Orchids are fascinating for many reasons: their reproductive strategies, their pollination systems and the various morphological adaptations they have evolved, including the presence of pollen grains agglomerated into two masses, called pollinia, which form a structure known as a polli-narium. After withdrawal from a flower, the pollinarium undergoes a bending movement such that the pollen masses become correctly orientated to strike the stigma. We evaluated the dura-tion of pollinator visits to inflorescences and the effects of temperature on pollinaria reconfigu-ration in eight orchid species in order to analyze the effects of increasing air temperature on the changes in bending time, and thus on geitonogamy levels. The impact of temperature on insect behavior was not assessed because our priority was to understand the effects of temperature on the process of pollinaria reconfiguration. All the examined species showed natural reconfigura-tion times that were 1.7–3.0 times longer than the pollinator residency times. A higher tempera-ture showed a reduction in bending time regardless of the species tested. However, the bending time was never shorter than the residence time of the insects on the flower. Our data showed that high temperatures had a limited effect on the pollinarium reconfiguration time, thus indi-cating that high temperatures had a limited effect on folding compared to the effect that it had on the viability of the pollen.

Pollinaria Reconfiguration Mechanism of Widespread Euro-Mediterranean Orchids: The Effects of Increasing Air Temperature

Lanzino Micaela
;
Palermo Anna Maria;Pellegrino Giuseppe
2022

Abstract

Orchids are fascinating for many reasons: their reproductive strategies, their pollination systems and the various morphological adaptations they have evolved, including the presence of pollen grains agglomerated into two masses, called pollinia, which form a structure known as a polli-narium. After withdrawal from a flower, the pollinarium undergoes a bending movement such that the pollen masses become correctly orientated to strike the stigma. We evaluated the dura-tion of pollinator visits to inflorescences and the effects of temperature on pollinaria reconfigu-ration in eight orchid species in order to analyze the effects of increasing air temperature on the changes in bending time, and thus on geitonogamy levels. The impact of temperature on insect behavior was not assessed because our priority was to understand the effects of temperature on the process of pollinaria reconfiguration. All the examined species showed natural reconfigura-tion times that were 1.7–3.0 times longer than the pollinator residency times. A higher tempera-ture showed a reduction in bending time regardless of the species tested. However, the bending time was never shorter than the residence time of the insects on the flower. Our data showed that high temperatures had a limited effect on the pollinarium reconfiguration time, thus indi-cating that high temperatures had a limited effect on folding compared to the effect that it had on the viability of the pollen.
orchids, pollinarium, pollinators, pollinaria bending, pollinaria reconfiguration
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: http://hdl.handle.net/20.500.11770/334221
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