Floral morphology, embryology, and relationships of the Berberidaceae.
Australian Journal of Botany
17(1) 69 - 79
The floral morphology and development of the gametophytes in Berberis umbellata and Mahonia leschenaultii have been studied.
All the perianth members have three traces each in B. umbellata while in M. leschenaultii the members of the outer three whorls have five veins each and those of the fourth three veins each. The vascular supply for the inner two whorls of perianth and the stamens arises as conjoint traces. The wall of the gynoecium is traversed by numerous bundles with some concentrated in the placental region. The dorsal and ventral bundles are differentiated in M. leschenaultii but not in B. umbellata. The tricarpellary interpretation of the gynoecium is shown to be unconvincing. The gynoecium is regarded as monocarpellary.
The mature anther wall is five-layered including the epidermis, of which the innermost layer forms the tapetum of secretory type. The tapetal cells are four to eight-nucleate. The hypodermal wall layer develops into a fibrous endothecium in M. leschenaultii. In B. urnbellata, the endothecium develops U-shaped thickenings. Division of pollen mother cells is successive. Pollen tetrads are usually isobilateral. Mature pollen grains are three-colpate and two-celled.
The ovule is anatropous, bitegmic, and crassinucellate. In B. umbellata, a rudimentary aril is formed as an outgrowth of the funiculus. The single hypodermal archesporial cell in the young ovule cuts off a parietal cell. Development of the embryo sac is of the Polygonum type. The synergids show filiform apparatus and are persistent. The antipodals are large and persistent in M. leschenaultii and ephemeral in B. umbellata. The relationships of the Berberidaceae (sensu Hutchinson 1959) to the Menispermaceae, Lardizabalaceae, and the Ranunculaceae (sensu lato) are discussed.
Full text doi:10.1071/BT9690069
© CSIRO 1969