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Brazilian Journal of Botany

Print version ISSN 0100-8404On-line version ISSN 1806-9959

Abstract

LEITE, Ana Virgínia  and  MACHADO, Isabel Cristina. Reproductive biology of catingueira (Caesalpinia pyramidalis Tul., Leguminosae-Caesalpinioideae), an endemic species of Caatinga. Rev. bras. Bot. [online]. 2009, vol.32, n.1, pp.79-88. ISSN 1806-9959.  http://dx.doi.org/10.1590/S0100-84042009000100008.

The Leguminosae comprises 293 species in the Caatinga, and only eight were studied for pollination and, or breeding system. We analysed the floral biology, pollinators and breeding system of Caesalpinia pyramidalis Tul. The pollen tube growth was observed eight, 24 and 48 hours after hand pollinations. There were 5.7 ± 0.9 ovules/flower, 66.9 ± 47.8 flowers and 2.1 ± 1.2 fruits per inflorescence and 2.88 ± 1.44 seeds/fruit. Nectar production was about 1.0 µL during the first day of anthesis, 0.5 µL in the second day, and there was no production in the third day. C. pyramidalis is self-incompatible but self-pollen tubes grew down to the embryo sac. Species of Xylocopa and Centris are important pollinators of C. pyramidalis. During the visits, the bees promote mostly geitonogamy which favours the loss of fruits, and generates a low fruit/flower ratio (0.03). However, high seed/ovule ratio (0.50) shows highest investment in seeds by cross-pollination, reducing the effects of geitonogamy.

Keywords : Caatinga; Centris; late-acting self-incompatibility; preemergent reproductive success; Xylocopa.

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