Photonastic Control of Leaflet Orientation in Melilotus indicus (Fabaceae).
- A Schwartz, S Gilboa, D Koller
- Plant physiology
The ontogenetic change taking place in the facultative photoperiodic response of A. retroflexus to inductive short-day (SD) conditions was studied by exposing plants to continuous induction after different initial exposures to long-days (LD), and comparing the kinetics of their developmental responses (cumulative number of plants with reproductive apices, flowering stage, and height of the apical dome). As the plants progressed from emergence to “autonomous” flowering (i.e., in non-inductive conditions), their response to continuous induction became progressively more rapid. Reproductive development was initiated following a progressively shorter lag-phase after the start of induction, but its subsequent rate remained unchanged. Until the onset of reproductive development, the undifferentiated upper part of the shoot apex (apical dome) elongated much more rapidly in SD than in LD. However, in both cases reproductive development was initiated when the apex had elongated to about the same extent, after which its elongation accelerated considerably, but to similar rates in both photoperiods. The data indicate that progress towards reproductive development takes place in inductive (SD), as well as in non-inductive (LD) photoperiods, but one cycle of the latter is as effective as 0.20–0.25 of a cycle of the former. —Plants induced at different stages in ontogeny started to change their subsequent branching pattern (ratio of leafy to leafless branches) as soon as induction was delayed beyond “autonomous” flowering.