Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Carex phacota

Carex phacota is one of the 20-odd Carex species (Cyperaceae) in Hong Kong. It was assessed to be very rare without recent specimens. However several localities have been found recently because of more nature lovers getting interest in the diversity of local flora.

Along the inflorescence, there is only one terminal staminate spikelet where all the other spikelets are pistillate. As most of the Carex species, if not all, are wind-pollinated, the pistillate spikelet right next to the staminate spikelet received most pollen grains from the latter due to their spatial closeness from field observation. I am interested to see if this is a kind of mechanism to assure fruit production by self-pollination with this "companion pistillate spiklet".

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