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Abstract Detail

Recent Topics Posters

Benson, Chris [1], Ballard, Harvey [2].

Studies on the perplexingly variable Viola subsinuata complex (Violaceae).

The predominately Appalachian violet, Viola subsinuata (Greene) Greene, is highly morphologically variable within populations and across its range. Some specialists, such as Ezra Brainerd, have suggested it is composed of subtly different regional ecotypes that intergrade at the edge of their ranges. Brainerd characterized a deeply divided-leaved “Great Lakes” ecotype, a shallowly lobed-leaved “Appalachian” ecotype, and a deeply divided-leaved southeastern ecotype. Others, such as Gil-ad, have suggested that Viola subsinuata represents an assemblage of hybrids between divided-leaved species (like the Midwestern prairie birdsfoot violet, Viola pedatifida G.Don) and various unlobed-leaved species. We have initiated systematic studies involving intensive field surveys, herbarium specimen examinations, and micromorphological examinations of lateral petal trichomes and seed coats using scanning electron microscopy. Our preliminary observations indicate that there may be at least three cryptic species in Viola subsinuata sensu lato, each hybridizing locally with unlobed-leaved species like the common woodland violet, Viola sororia Willd. Features on petal trichomes and seed coats are consistently different among the regional phenotypes. Plants intermediate between the phenotype extremes at each site and the co-occuring unlobed-leaved species are currently being investigated to confirm or refute hybridization as the explanation of within-site and species-wide variability.

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1 - Ohio University, Environmental & Plant Biology, 315 Porter Hall, Athens, OH, 45701, USA
2 - Ohio University, Department of Environmental and Plant Biology, 315 Porter Hall, Athens, OH, 45701, USA

phenotypic plasticity

Presentation Type: Recent Topics Poster
Session: P
Location: Hall D/The Shaw Conference Centre
Date: Monday, July 27th, 2015
Time: 5:30 PM
Number: PRT032
Abstract ID:1817
Candidate for Awards:None

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