Bromeliaceae: Profile of an Adaptive Radiation by David H. Benzing

By David H. Benzing

This e-book provides a synthesis of the huge details to be had at the biology of Bromeliacea, a mostly neotropical kinfolk of approximately 2700 defined species. the writer emphasizes reproductive and vegetative constitution, comparable body structure, ecology, and evolution, instead of floristics and taxonomy. Guiding questions contain: Why is that this relatives inordinately winning in arboreal (epiphytic) and different in general annoying habitats and why is that this relations so vital to huge fauna past pollinators and frugivores within the woodland cover? notable and infrequently novel mechanisms that mediate water stability, tolerance for top and coffee exposures, and mutualisms with ants have acquired a lot research and make allowance attention-grabbing comparisons between plant taxa and aid clarify why contributors of this taxon show extra adaptive and ecological style than so much different households of flowering crops. This quantity concentrates on functionality and underlying mechanisms, hence it is going to around out a literature that another way quite often ignores uncomplicated biology in want of taxonomy and horticulture.

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A modest third section contains short chapters authored by specialists who treat several genera and the ethnobotany and conservation of Bromeliaceae. As information continues to accumulate, additional, specialized subjects will be able to be included in future volumes, along with updates of the core chapters on basic structure and function, ecology and family history. Part two Basic structure, function, ecology and evolution 2 Vegetative structure All of the impressive functional and ecological variety expressed by some 2700 species of Bromeliaceae is grounded on a single body plan, or what Hallé et al.

In section. (F) Shield. All parts redrawn from Tomlinson (1969). largest sympodial types. Monocarpic Puya raimondii at maturity exceeds all the other Bromeliaceae in mass and height and probably in the number of years required for its unitary body to achieve ¯owering size (Fig. 2C). The individual bromeliad shoot typically consists of a short stem bearing a few to many, closely placed, alternate, usually spirally arranged, strapshaped to ®liform leaves. Just two organs, one leaf and an enlarged prophyll, constitute each typically rootless ramet of neotenic Tillandsia usneoides (Figs.

Axillary buds occur along the entire length of the typical bromeliad shoot, but few ¯ush and, except for the lateral-¯owered species, those that do produce the standard one or two reiterative ramets (Fig. 14). Some of the longer-stemmed saxicoles (Tillandsia diaguitensis) and certain scrambling Pitcairnia species (Fig. 12B) branch less predictably, possibly according to physiological status or some external cue like photoperiod. Pitcairnia riparia branches whenever its stolons encounter obstructions that block forward progress.

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