J Syst Evol ›› 2014, Vol. 52 ›› Issue (2): 195-214.doi: 10.1111/jse.12072

• Research Articles • Previous Articles     Next Articles

Comparative floral development in the tribe Mentheae (Nepetoideae: Lamiaceae) and its bearing on the evolution of floral patterns in asterids

1Somayeh NAGHILOO* 1Masoumeh KHODAVERDI 2Zahra ESMAILLOU 2Mohammad Reza DADPOUR 3Paula J. RUDALL   

  1. 1(Department of Plant Biology, Faculty of Natural Sciences, University of Tabriz, Tabriz 5166616471, Iran)
    2(Department of Horticultural Sciences, Faculty of Agriculture, University of Tabriz, Tabriz 5166616471, Iran)
    3(Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew, Richmond Surrey, TW9 3NJ, UK)
  • Received:2013-04-16 Online:2013-11-20 Published:2014-01-20

Abstract: A comparative developmental study of flowers was carried out using epi-illumination light microscopy on four genera of Lamiaceae (Nepeta, Rosmarinus, Salvia, andZiziphora), representing all three subtribes of Mentheae. All species examined share unidirectional (adaxial to abaxial) sepal initiation, except Rosmarinus, which has the reverse unidirectional sequence, starting abaxially. Initiated but suppressed bracteoles were detected only in Rosmarinus. In Rosmarinus, Salvia, and Ziziphora, initiation of petals and stamens proceeds unidirectionally from the abaxial side. Floral initiation of Nepeta has bidirectional inception of petals and unidirectional stamen initiation from the adaxial side. Temporal overlap in organ initiation between petal and stamen whorls occurs in all taxa, though this feature is more prominent in Rosmarinus. Significant structural and developmental features that distinguish the four genera include: (1) polysymmetric calyx tube, highly tomentose corolla and deeply four-partitioned ovary in Nepeta; (2) monosymmetric two-lipped calyx and shallowly four-partitioned ovary in Ziziphora; and (3) suppression of adaxial stamens in Salvia and Rosmarinus. Adaxial stamens are absent from Rosmarinus, but reduced stamens remain as staminodia in Salvia. In a phylogenetic context, the late monosymmetry of Nepeta and very early monosymmetry of Rosmarinus could both be regarded as derived conditions compared with the early monosymmetry ofSalvia and Ziziphora.

Key words: epi-illumination light microscopy, floral ontogeny, Mentheae, zygomorphy expression.

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