Original Articles

Sterile Lanterna camara: fact or theory

Published in: South African Journal of Plant and Soil
Volume 4, issue 4, 1987 , pages: 171–174
DOI: 10.1080/02571862.1987.10634968
Author(s): J.J. SpiesDepartment of Agriculture and Water Supply, Republic of South Africa, Henriette, du PlessisDepartment of Agriculture and Water Supply, Republic of South Africa

Abstract

Attempts are being made to legalize the sale of ‘sterile’ Lantana camara varieties in South Africa. Several so-called sterile varieties have been investigated cytogenetically. All these. plants proved to be triploids.(2n = 33). A mechanism exists through which an unexpectedly high frequency of pollen with 11 chromosomes is formed in these plants. This pollen is fertile and is involved in cross-pollination. All these plants formed sexual embryo sacs and, with the exception of one plant, viable seeds. These plants are capable of hybridizing with existing populations and intensifying the problems caused by L. camara in this way. Legalizing the sale of ‘sterile’ L. camara varieties will therefore be disastrous and all varieties must be considered to be noxious weeds.

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