Diversity, mutation and fire strategies in Grevillea

A flower of Leucospermum, a group of species in the Proteaceae

A flower of a Leucospermum spe­cies, a genus in the Proteaceae (edit: replaces an incor­rect Grevillea photograph)

Grevillea rhizo­matosa is a spread­ing shrub that exhib­its mul­tiple breed­ing strategies includ­ing self-compatibility, self-incompatibility and clonal­ity (with and without ster­il­ity).Gross et al. com­pare genetic diversity among pop­u­la­tions and find that somatic muta­tions con­trib­ute sig­ni­fic­antly to gene diversity in sterile pop­u­la­tions, the accu­mu­la­tion of which is the likely cause of male and female ster­il­ity. They con­clude that high levels of genetic diversity may there­fore not always be syn­onym­ous with sexual fit­ness and genetic health, and hypo­thes­ize that fre­quent fires drive selec­tion for clonal reproduction.

Annals of Botany Office.

The Annals of Botany Office is based at the University of Leicester.

2 Responses

  1. Selina says:

    The photo with the art­icle doesn’t appear to fea­ture a Grevillea — but some­thing in the Acanthaceae? (Ruelllia)?

    Here’s some more inform­a­tion.

  2. Many thanks for the cor­rec­tion, Selina. I don’t have a Grevillea pho­to­graph so replaced it with, at least, another Proteaceae (taken in Albany, WA, 21 September).

    Thanks also for the link to the NSW Threatened Plant Database, http://​threatene​d​spe​cies​.envir​on​ment​.nsw​.gov​.au “In New South Wales, 1080 nat­ive spe­cies, pop­u­la­tions and eco­lo­gical com­munit­ies are lis­ted as threatened with extinc­tion. This web­site shows you what they look like, where and how they live, why they’re threatened, and what we can do to help bring them back from the brink of extinction.

    Species, pop­u­la­tions and eco­lo­gical com­munit­ies
    Detailed pro­files on each threatened spe­cies, pop­u­la­tion and eco­lo­gical com­munity in NSW.
    Information on what’s liv­ing in a par­tic­u­lar type of hab­itat or region of NSW.”