|Pollination biology of Eriocaulon parkeri in Connecticut|In: Aquatic Botany. Elsevier Science: Tokyo; Oxford; New York; London; Amsterdam. ISSN 0304-3770, more
Breeding; Reproduction; Eriocaulaceae; Eriocaulon parkeri; USA, Connecticut [Marine Regions]; Fresh water
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- Sawyer, N.W.
- Mertins, D.S.
- Schuster, L.A.
Eriocaulon parkeri B. L. Robinson is a monoecious, pioneer species of tidal mudflats that displays characteristics that suggest outcrossing as a preferred breeding system. Analyses of breeding system dynamics, fruit set, and pollen and seed viabilities were undertaken in Connecticut and Wisconsin to test the hypothesis of entomophyly and outcrossing as a preferred breeding strategy. Potential pollinators included syrphid and long-legged flies. Seed viability was estimated at 94 ± 16% (n = 133); pollen viability at 88 ± 13%. Pollen production averaged 500 grains per flower. Pollen–ovule ratios within inflorescences averaged 196:1, suggesting facultative autogamy. Seed set in natural populations averaged 74%, not significantly different between early and late season plants or between greenhouse controls and hand pollinations. Emasculated plants produced small amounts of seed under controlled greenhouse conditions. Pollen tube growth through the styles of E. aquaticum, a related species, was much more prevalent than that of E. parkeri. Results suggest that E. parkeri relies heavily on geitonogamy for seed production. Some seed may be produced by agamospermy.