Ovule and Seed Production Patterns in Relation to Flower Size Variations in Actinomorphic and Zygomorphic Flower Species

AoB Plants. 2019 Sep 23;11(5):plz061. doi: 10.1093/aobpla/plz061. eCollection 2019 Oct.


Zygomorphic flower species tend to show lower flower size variation than actinomorphic flower species. Have these differences also brought an association in ovule and seed production that has arisen due to natural selection in these species? Flowers were collected from 29 actinomorphic and 20 zygomorphic flower species, and fruits were collected from 21 actinomorphic and 14 zygomorphic flower species in Miyagi and Aomori prefectures, in Japan. The coefficient of variations (CVs) of flower sizes, mean ovule sizes of flowers, ovule numbers of flowers and mean seed sizes of fruits were calculated. The CV of flower sizes was marginally different between the floral symmetry types; tending to be lower in the zygomorphic flower species than in the actinomorphic flower species. The CVs of mean ovule sizes and ovule numbers of flowers increased with increase in the CV of flower sizes in the actinomorphic flower species but not in the zygomorphic flower species. Mean ovule number of flowers tends to increase with increase in mean flower size in the actinomorphic flower species but not in the zygomorphic flower species. The degrees in variations in ovule size and number of flowers were influenced by the interaction of floral symmetry type and flower size variation, suggesting that floral symmetry also has brought an evolutionary association in ovule production by flowers.

Keywords: Angiosperms; ovule number variation; ovule size variation; seed size variation; selection through pollinators.