Journal Article

Is axis position within tree architecture a determinant of axis morphology, branching, flowering and fruiting? An essay in mango

Frédéric Normand, Abdoul Kowir Pambo Bello, Catherine Trottier and Pierre-Éric Lauri

in Annals of Botany

Published on behalf of The Annals of Botany Company

Volume 103, issue 8, pages 1325-1336
Published in print June 2009 | ISSN: 0305-7364
Published online April 2009 | e-ISSN: 1095-8290 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/aob/mcp079
Is axis position within tree architecture a determinant of axis morphology, branching, flowering and fruiting? An essay in mango

More Like This

Show all results sharing these subjects:

  • Ecology and Conservation
  • Evolutionary Biology
  • Plant Sciences and Forestry

GO

Show Summary Details

Preview

Background and Aims

Growth and reproductive strategies of plants are often related to particular, although usually poorly characterized, spatial distributions of shoots within the plant's architecture. In this study it is therefore hypothesized that a close relationship exists between architectural position, axis morphology (length, diameter, leaf area), and functional behaviour (branching, flowering and fruiting). The study focused on the architectural position of mango growth units, defined here as being the relative position, apical or lateral, on the parent growth unit, i.e. growing from the apical or a lateral meristem, respectively.

Methods

Stem length and leaf characteristics (area, dry weight) were measured on apical and lateral growth units of four mango cultivars over two years. Branching, flowering and fruiting were assessed for both growth unit types using an exhaustive description of tree vegetative and reproductive growth over two years. The relationships between growth unit diameter and flowering and fruiting were assessed for one of the four cultivars.

Key Results

A pronounced morphological dimorphism was observed for the four cultivars. Across cultivars, stem length was significantly 1·31–1·34 times longer and total leaf area was 2·54–3·47 times larger in apical compared to lateral growth units. Apical growth units tended to branch, flower and fruit more than lateral growth units. The relationship between growth unit diameter and flowering rate was quadratic and dependent on growth unit position. The relationship between growth unit diameter and fruiting rate was linear and independent of growth unit position.

Conclusions

Morphological traits of mango growth units were clearly involved in the determinism of flowering and fruiting, although in different ways. The results, however, showed that current hypotheses of flowering, such as carbohydrate availability and florigenic promoters, are not sufficient in themselves if they neglect the hierarchical relationships between axes, i.e. their relative position, apical or lateral.

Keywords: Axis dimorphism; branching; flowering; fruiting; growth unit; Mangifera indica; mango; Reunion Island

Journal Article.  8758 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Ecology and Conservation ; Evolutionary Biology ; Plant Sciences and Forestry

Full text: subscription required

How to subscribe Recommend to my Librarian

Users without a subscription are not able to see the full content. Please, subscribe or login to access all content.