Original Articles

Variation in important pasture grasses. II. Cytogenetic and reproductive variation

DOI: 10.1080/02566702.1988.9648104
Author(s): J.J. SpiesDepartment of Agriculture and Water Supply,, G.E. Gibbs RussellDepartment of Agriculture and Water Supply,


The chromosome numbers and reproductive variation of seven important pasture grasses from South Africa are compared. This comparison indicates that all these species form polyploid complexes, all reproduce both sexually and either apomictically or vegetatively, and some form of hybridization or cross‐fertilization occurs in each species. The ecological success of these species can, therefore, be attributed to the fact that they combine the advantages of polyploidy and apomixis and, at the same time, bypass the disadvantages with their hybridization potential.

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