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Australian Journal of Botany
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Protocols in ecological and environmental plant physiology


Australian Journal of Botany is an international journal for the publication of original research and reviews in plant science with relevance to Southern Hemisphere ecosystems including ecology and ecophysiology, conservation biology and biodiversity, forest biology and management, cell and molecular biology, palaeobotany, reproductive biology and genetics, mycology and pathology and structure and development. More...

Editor-in-Chief: Dick Williams


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Published online 24 June 2016
Self-compatibility and specialisation in a fly-pollinated Acianthera (Orchidaceae: Pleurothallidiinae) 
E. R. Pansarin, L. M. Pansarin, M. E. P. Martucci and L. Gobbo-Neto

In this study we report the reproduction biology of a South American orchid that exhibits flower characteristics related to pollination by flies, as a dung-like fragrance and dark flower structures. This paper shows the first case of self-compatibility in the orchid genus Acianthera and strong flower adaptation, since only a single fly species has been recorded as pollinator.

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Published online 21 June 2016
Reproductive biology of a medicinally important plant Leonurus cardiaca (Lamiaceae) 
Fatemeh Borna, Nabil M. Ahmad, Shuming Luo and Richard Trethowan

Leonurus cardiaca is self-compatible but bears protandrous flowers, which promote cross-pollination. The stigma becomes receptive 2 or 3 days after anthesis and anther dehiscence. A high degree of synchronisation in flowering was observed among the plants within each of the populations studied. A modified Brewbaker and Kwack (BK) medium was optimised for pollen viability tests.

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Published online 17 June 2016
Changes in irradiance and soil properties explain why typical non-arboreal savanna species disappear under tree encroachment 
Luiz Felipe Souza Pinheiro, Rosana Marta Kolb and Davi Rodrigo Rossatto

Savannas are fire-prone environments where species possess specific adaptations to deal with frequent fire events. In the absence of fire, the density of tree species can increase in typical savanna sites, creating a more shaded environment, where non-arboreal savanna species cannot thrive.

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Published online 17 June 2016
The relationship between salt gland density and sodium accumulation/secretion in a wide selection from three Zoysia species 
Akihiro Yamamoto, Masatsugu Hashiguchi, Ryo Akune, Takahito Masumoto, Melody Muguerza, Yuichi Saeki and Ryo Akashi

There is a little information about the type of secretion and accumulation of Na+, and its relationship to salt gland density in Zoysia spp., whereas it has been suggested that salt gland density, salt secretion and salt tolerance are positively correlated. In the present study, salt accumulation/secretion is different between Zoysia species and that salt gland density and salt secretion are not always positively correlated. Our findings will contribute to the molecular breeding of salt tolerance in zoysiagrasses.

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Published online 14 June 2016
Effect of nickel on pollen germination and pollen tube length in Arabis alpina (Brassicaceae) 
Dolja Pavlova

The mountain plant Arabis alpina is distributed in the Rila mountains, Bulgaria, on serpentine and non-serpentine substrates. The effect of nickel on pollen germination and pollen tube length of two different populations was studied and compared. Nickel inhibits pollen germination and pollen tube elongation causing different abnormalities, but pollen of the serpentine plants is less sensitive to higher Ni concentrations.

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Published online 14 June 2016
Agricultural weeds and coastal saltmarsh in south-eastern Australia: an insurmountable problem? 
Thomas Hurst and Paul I. Boon

Tall wheat grass, *Lophopyrum ponticum, is one of the most threatening and widely distributed weeds of saline coastal wetlands in south-eastern Australia. It could not be controlled in a coastal saltmarsh in Western Port (Victoria) by the monocot-specific herbicide Fluazifop-P, and although the broad-spectrum systemic herbicide glyphosate was more effective in controlling *L. ponticum infestations, this herbicide had severe effects on native plant species. Therefore, weed infestations remain a difficult-to-manage problem in the saline coastal wetlands in south-eastern Australia.

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Published online 14 June 2016
Changes in endogenous hormones and seed-coat phenolics during seed storage of two Suaeda salsa populations 
Yan-ge Xu, Ranran Liu, Na Sui, Weiwei Shi, Lei Wang, Changyan Tian and Jie Song

Seed storage is important to farmers, breeders and industries interested in seed processing and commercial trade. However, seeds of many species lose viability after short periods of storage, resulting in extensive losses and increased chances of extinction. The present results for the euhalophyte S. salsa, which has a high economic and ecological value, indicated that changes in the vigour of its dimorphic seeds during storage may be related to changes in endogenous hormones and seed-coat phenolics.

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Published online 10 June 2016
Patchy distribution and varied habitats of Macrozamia lucida cycads explained by constancy in a key environmental variable 
L. A. Kaye, G. H. Walter and S. Raghu

Identifying the primary environmental variables that influence the distribution of a species is complicated where the species in question occurs across a variety of different habitats. We found that elevated moisture was a critical factor influencing the patchy distribution of Macrozamia lucida cycads; despite the patches being located across a variety of habitats. Understanding of the environmental space occupied by this species can enable us to anticipate its conservation needs better, now and in the context of global environmental change.

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Published online 07 June 2016
Sufficient sample size to study seed germination 
João Paulo Ribeiro-Oliveira, Marli A. Ranal, Denise Garcia de Santana and Leandro Alves Pereira

The sample size can affect inferences about the germination process and, as a consequence, compromise restoration and/or conservation efforts. In this context, we offer a practical tool for calculating the sufficient sample size to seed germination. Our results demonstrate that is possible to prepare protocols to test the germination process for any species, with a reduced number of seeds.

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Volume 64 Number 3 2016

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Herbivory and the success of Ligustrum lucidum: evidence from a comparison between native and novel ranges 
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Lía Montti , María Marta Ayup , Roxana Aragón , Weilong Qi , Honghua Ruan , Romina Fernández , Sergio A. Casertano and Xiaoming Zou
pp. 181-192

Invasive plant species may benefit from a reduction in herbivory in their introduced range. Here, we evaluated leaf herbivory of an invasive tree species (Ligustrum lucidum Aiton) in its native and novel ranges, and determined the potential changes in leaf traits that may be associated with the patterns of herbivory.


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Impact of high-severity fire in a Tasmanian dry eucalypt forest 
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Lynda D. Prior , Grant J. Williamson and David M. J. S. Bowman
pp. 193-205

Dry eucalypt forests are renowned for their flammability and ability to recover from fire, yet there is little hard data on the effects of high-severity fires. We showed that fire in long-unburnt (>15 years) dry eucalypt forest remnants in the driest part of Tasmania caused high levels of tree mortality, particularly in the understorey acacias and banksias. Our study highlighted the need to reduce fuel loads in these fragmented forests to reduce tree mortality caused by fire.

    | Supplementary Material (323 KB)

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Chromosome evolution in Bulbine glauca (Asphodelaceae or Xanthorrhoeaceae subfam. Asphodeloideae) indicates six species, not one 
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Iain S. F. Moore , Elizabeth A. Brown , Ian R. H. Telford and Jeremy J. Bruhl
pp. 206-218

Novel chromosome counts are presented for a wide sample of Australian populations of Bulbine glauca. The species complex shows a variable asymmetric karyotype across its distribution, indicating karyotypic evolution involving structural rearrangements. There appear to be six distinctive groups within the complex based on karyomorphology.


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An unspecific phytotoxin oxalic acid and its effect on sunflower proteome 
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Maryam Monazzah , Sattar Tahmasebi Enferadi , Mohammad J. Soleimani and Zohreh Rabiei
pp. 219-226

Oxalic acid is the main pathogenicity factor of plant pathogen Sclerotinia sclerotiorum. The present study aimed to further characterise the initial stages of pathogen invasion and the plant–pathogen interaction through simulation of Sclerotinia attack by treating sunflower plant with oxalic acid. Studies of the proteins and enzymes involved in Sclerotinia-sunflower interactions could lead to the improvement of sunflower resistance against S. sclerotiorum in early stages of growth carried out in the laboratory instead of field.


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The phenology and seed production of Cucumis melo as an invasive weed in northern Iran 
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Sima Sohrabi , Javid Gherekhloo , Behnam Kamkar , Ali Ghanbari and Mohammad Hassan Rashed Mohassel
pp. 227-234

The estimated thermal time for seven sowing dates for Cucumis melo were ~411, 448, 733, 672, 604, 558 and 251 Celcius degree days, respectively. The mean number of fruits per plant and seeds per fruit were significantly different at each sowing date. Wild melon could produce a lot of fruits and seeds (up to 5000) within a growth cycle (average in 75 days).


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Differences in trace element profiles of three subspecies of Silene parnassica (Caryophyllaceae) growing on ophiolitic substrate 
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Sanja Đurović , Ksenija Jakovljević , Uroš Buzurović , Marjan Niketić , Nevena Mihailović and Gordana Tomović
pp. 235-245

Silene parnassica is distributed on mountains of the south-western Balkan Peninsula, inhabiting both limestone and ophiolitic substrate. Comparison of trace element profiles and the differences in uptake and translocation of trace elements in plants from five populations belonging to three subspecies of Silene parnassica growing on ophiolitic substrates showed that all three subspecies act as strong Ni accumulators.


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Comparing the impacts of different types of recreational trails on grey box grassy-woodland vegetation: lessons for conservation and management 
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Mark Ballantyne , Donna Louise Treby , Joseph Quarmby and Catherine Marina Pickering
pp. 246-259

Recreational trails can impact natural vegetation with the type and severity of impacts differing among trail types. We compared five types of trails in endangered remnant woodland and found that all trails caused vegetation loss and compositional change but that wider and hardened trail types (e.g. tarmac) caused the most marked changes with low species richness, reduced shrubs and bulbs and high weed abundance along trail edges. Wider bare earth trails caused high levels of soil loss. Decision makers must more adequately understand the ecological impacts of different trail types before their construction.


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Influence of abiotic stress preconditioning on antioxidant enzymes in shoot tips of Lomandra sonderi (Asparagaceae) prior to cryostorage 
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B. Funnekotter , A. Sortey , E. Bunn , S. R. Turner and R. L. Mancera
pp. 260-268

Plants exposed to a range of light, temperature and sugar conditions may exhibit improved survival to cryopreservation for valuable germplasm. Antioxidant activity of superoxide dismutase and glutathione reductase was measured upon preconditioning treatments and showed changes relating to post-cryogenic survival. Understanding how antioxidants perform during cryopreservation is vital for improving protocols used in future conservation efforts.

    | Supplementary Material (275 KB)

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Sexual differences in morphology and aboveground biomass allocation in relation to branch number in Morus alba saplings 
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Huihui Huan , Bixia Wang , Gang Liu , Xiao Xu and Xinhua He
pp. 269-275

Five-branch male Morus alba saplings exhibited significantly greater leaf number and area, and leaf and aboveground biomass at the plant level than did female ones, whereas no such sexual differences in single-branch saplings were found. These results demonstrated that branch multiplication could result in sexual differences in plant growth in dioecious plants.


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These articles have been peer reviewed and accepted for publication. They are still in production and have not been edited, so may differ from the final published form.

    BT16054  Accepted 14 June 2016
    Using historic maps and citizen science to investigate the abundance and condition of survey reference `blaze´ trees
    Peter Spooner, Jake Shoard

    BT15281  Accepted 17 June 2016
    Anatomy and development of the reproductive units of Mapania pycnostachya and Hypolytrum schraderianum (Mapanioideae, Cyperaceae)
    Mariana Monteiro, Vera Scatena, Aline Oriani

    BT15230  Accepted 14 June 2016
    Ovule and megagametophyte development in selected species of Apeibeae and Grewieae (Malvaceae-Grewioideae) from South America and its systematic implications
    Elsa Lattar, Beatriz Galati, María Ferrucci


The Most Read ranking is based on the number of downloads from the CSIRO PUBLISHING website of articles published in the previous 12 months. Usage statistics are updated daily.

Rank Paper Details
1. Published 23 February 2016
The Christmas tree project: comparing the effects of five treatments on the health of cut Christmas trees (Pinus radiata, Pinaceae)

Olyvea Akres, Isabella Cavallaro, Cynthia Cheng, Madison Dixon, Darcy Goddard, Tamara Hofbauer, Sidney Mahr, Taylor Mason, Lulu Miskin, Chloe Morgan, Eleanor Nettleton, Amelia Purseglove, Bella Rosenberg, Lucia Salgado, Jasmin Sardi, Emily Scarlis, Sophie Snyman, Isabella Spagnardi, Oona Swinson-Dulhunty, Lilla Szentmariay, Nikki Zimmerman, Angela T. Moles and Julia Cooke

2. Published 9 December 2015
Problems with using mean germination time to calculate rate of seed germination

Elias Soltani, Farshid Ghaderi-Far, Carol C. Baskin and Jerry M. Baskin

3. Published 6 October 2015
Post-fire succession during the long-term absence of fire in coastal heathland and a test of the chronosequence survey method

Marc Freestone, Timothy J. Wills and Jennifer Read

4. Published 6 October 2015
Recovery of treeless subalpine vegetation in Kosciuszko National Park after the landscape-scale fire of 2003

K. L. McDougall, N. G. Walsh and G. T. Wright

5. Published 9 December 2015
The mistletoe flora of southern Western Australia, with a particular reference to host relationships and fire

A. N. Start

6. Published 25 June 2015
The flora of ultramafic soils in the Australia–Pacific Region: state of knowledge and research priorities

Antony van der Ent, Tanguy Jaffré, Laurent L'Huillier, Neil Gibson and Roger D. Reeves

7. Published 6 October 2015
Grevillea (Proteaceae) seed coats contain inhibitors for seed germination

Xuanli Ma, Jingnan Guo, Xinyan Han and Guijun Yan

8. Published 4 April 2016
Estimating density-dependent impacts of European rabbits on Australian tree and shrub populations

Greg Mutze, Brian Cooke and Scott Jennings

9. Published 23 February 2016
Hakea, the world’s most sclerophyllous genus, arose in southwestern Australian heathland and diversified throughout Australia over the past 12 million years

Byron B. Lamont, Tianhua He and Sim Lin Lim

10. Published 23 May 2016
Impact of high-severity fire in a Tasmanian dry eucalypt forest

Lynda D. Prior, Grant J. Williamson and David M. J. S. Bowman

11. Published 9 December 2015
Differences in seedling water-stress response of two co-occurring Banksia species

M. M. Holloway-Phillips, H. Huai, A. Cochrane and A. B. Nicotra

12. Published 6 October 2015
Chromium and nickel accumulation in the macrophytes of the Kawasi wetland on Obi Island, North Maluku Province, Indonesia

R. Amin, M. Edraki, D. R. Mulligan and T. H. Gultom

13. Published 6 October 2015
Causes of infertility in the endangered Australian endemic plant Borya mirabilis (Boryaceae)

Noushka H. Reiter, Neville G. Walsh and Ann C. Lawrie

14. Published 7 August 2015
Reproductive success of Acacia longifolia (Fabaceae, Mimosoideae) in native and invasive populations

Marta Correia, Sílvia Castro and Susana Rodríguez-Echeverría

15. Published 9 December 2015
Influence of seed dimorphism and provenance on seed morphology, dispersal, germination and seedling growth of Brachyscome ciliaris (Asteraceae)

Rina Aleman, Manfred Jusaitis, Joan Gibbs, Phillip Ainsley, Fleur Tiver and Sophie Petit

16. Published 7 August 2015
An evaluation of the genetic structure of seed sources and the maintenance of genetic diversity during establishment of two yellow box (Eucalyptus melliodora) seed-production areas

Linda M. Broadhurst, Graham Fifield, Bindi Vanzella and Melinda Pickup

17. Published 15 September 2015
Knowledge of the reproductive ecology of the invasive Salix cinerea, in its invaded range, assists in more targeted management strategies

Tara Hopley and Andrew G. Young

18. Published 4 April 2016
Architecture of four tree species from different strata of a semideciduous forest in southern Brazil

Thaís M. Haddad, Mariana F. Hertel, Edmilson Bianchini and José A. Pimenta

19. Published 15 September 2015
Conservation biology of two endemic Beyeria species (Euphorbiaceae) from southern Western Australia

Brian J. Vincent, Sarah Barrett, Anne Cochrane, Julie A. Plummer and Michael Renton

20. Published 25 June 2015
Structure, floristics and diversity of tropical montane rain forests over ultramafic soils on Mount Kinabalu (Borneo) compared with those on non-ultramafic soils

Shin-ichiro Aiba, Yoshimi Sawada, Masaaki Takyu, Tatsuyuki Seino, Kanehiro Kitayama and Rimi Repin

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