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Abstract Detail

Reproductive Processes

Ball, Laymon [1], Fisher, Amanda [2].

Reproductive Biology of the Sonoran Desert Shrub Justicia californica (Acanthaceae).

Chuparosa (Justicia californica) is a Sonoran desert shrub in the otherwise mostly tropical plant family, Acanthaceae. Chuparosa has a late-winter bloom (March - June), and occurs throughout the Sonoran desert in Arizona, California, and four Mexican states: Baja California, Baja California Sur, Sinaloa, and Sonora. It is an important nectar-producing species for resident and migrating hummingbirds, and its flowers display a typical ornithophilous pollination syndrome: long, red corolla tubes with nectaries at the base. However, bees are also common visitors, and hawkmoths are infrequent visitors. To better understand the extent to which animal visitors may be driving the evolution of chuparosa’s floral morphology, we visited the Boyd Deep Canyon Desert Research Station, a University of California Natural Reserve near Palm Springs, California, several times between 2018 and 2019 and measured corolla and thecae morphology, nectar volume, tracked flower phenology, and observed frequency and duration of pollinator visits. We also studied chuparosa’s breeding system using seed set as a proxy for reproductive success. We tested the species’ ability to self with a self-pollinating mechanism, ability to self via hand-pollination, potential for agamospermy, and seed-set in flowers where hummingbirds were excluded versus seed set in open-pollinated flowers. We found Costa’s hummingbird (Calypte costae) and honey bees (Apis mellifera) to be the primary flower visitors at this location. We compare our results on chuparosa’s breeding system and pollinator observations to a study from the same location 40 years ago (D. Michener, 1979). Our study will help to understand the co-variation between corolla and anther morphology and how it relates to pollinator visitation in Justicia.

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1 - 5585 Pacific Coast Highway, Unit 210, Long Beach, CA, 90804, United States
2 - California State University, Long Beach, Biological Sciences, Mail Stop 9502, 1250 Bellflower Blvd, Long Beach, CA, 90840, United States

Breeding System
bee pollination
hummingbird pollination
flower morphology.

Presentation Type: Poster
Session: P, Reproductive Processes Posters
Location: Arizona Ballroom/Starr Pass
Date: Monday, July 29th, 2019
Time: 5:30 PM This poster will be presented at 5:30 pm. The Poster Session runs from 5:30 pm to 7:00 pm. Posters with odd poster numbers are presented at 5:30 pm, and posters with even poster numbers are presented at 6:15 pm.
Number: PRP003
Abstract ID:310
Candidate for Awards:None

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