Evolution of long scapes in Drosera

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Evolution of long scapes in <i>Drosera</i>
Evolution of long scapes in Drosera

Conventional wisdom is that long scapes in insectivorous plants have evolved to provide spatial separation between flowers and traps, preventing pollinators from being captured. However, Anderson studies two sympatric species with identical pollinators, Drosera cistiflora, with an upright growth form but a short scape, and D. pauciflora with a basal rosette of traps and a very long scape, and finds that no pollinators are trapped by either species. Manipulation of flower height in D.cistiflora suggests that long scapes probably evolved to attract pollinators.


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