Original Research

Aspects of pollination and floral development in Ficus capensis Thunb. (Moraceae)

H. Baijnath, S. Ramcharun
Bothalia | Vol 14, No 3/4 | a1257 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/abc.v14i3/4.1257 | © 1983 H. Baijnath, S. Ramcharun | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 05 November 1983 | Published: 06 November 1983

About the author(s)

H. Baijnath, Botany Department, University of Durban-Westville, South Africa
S. Ramcharun, Botany Department, University of Durban-Westville, South Africa

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Abstract

A unique obligatory symbiosis exists between Ficus capensis Thunb., and its pollinator, Ceratosolen capensis Grandi. Flowers from both aerial and geocarpic syconia may be pollinated and produce seeds. Females of C. capensis possess specialized mesothoracic pockets in which pollen is transferred from ripening syconia to receptive ones. A second primary sycophile, Sycophaga cyclostigma Waterston, appears to be ineffective in pollination.Several secondary sycophiles oviposit through the syconial wall. Strong sexual dimorphism exists in most sycophilous wasps. All female flowers have the potential to produce either seeds or galls and variation is merely one of gross morphology. Flowering is distinctly asynchronous. Seeds are dispersed by various fruit predators and germinate very easily under warm humid conditions.


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