Achene micromorphology of the genus Potentilla L. (Rosaceae) in Iran and its systematic application


Abstract: Achene micromorphological evidence belonging to 32 species of Potentilla from Iran were studied using scanning electron microscopy (SEM). Multivariate analysis was used to estimate the potential contribution of the quantitative and qualitative traits to the species relationships. Based on the present results, the achene micromorphological traits exhibited considerable variations. The SEM observations revealed 4 types of achene shapes, 4 main types and 6 sub types of surface patterns, 3 types of wax, 8 types, 15 subtypes, and 4 categories of sculpturing, 2 types of anticlinal cell boundaries, and 3 types of outer periclinal walls. In addition, the results demonstrated variations in the hilum dimensions, ventral ridge thickness, lumen dimension, distance between the hilum and style scare, apical width, the distance between 2 ribs, and rib thickness. Cluster analysis and principal component analysis of the data displayed that the achene characters were taxonomically informative and can be used as reliable criteria to distinguish species of the genus. An identification key to the Iranian species of Potentilla based on the achene diagnostic micromorphological characters was presented. The evolutionary trends of some micromorphological traits were also evaluated at the sectional level.

Keywords: Achene, micromorphology, Potentilla, Rosaceae, scanning electron microscopy, taxonomy

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