Pollen morphology and viability in Bromeliaceae


An. Acad. Bras. Ciênc.




ABSTRACT Pollen morphology characterization is important in taxonomy, conservation and plant breeding, and pollen viability studies can support breeding programs. This study investigated pollen morphology and male fertility in 18 species of Bromeliaceae with ornamental potential. For morphological characterization, pollen grains were acetolyzed and characterization of exine was done using scanning and transmission electron microscopy. Pollen viability was investigated by in vitro germination and histochemical tests. Species belonging to Aechmea and Ananas genera presented medium size pollen, except for Ae. fasciata, with large pollen. Al. nahoumii, P. sagenarius and the Vriesea species analyzed showed large pollen, except for V. carinata, with very large pollen. Pollen of Aechmea, Ananas and P. sagenarius presented bilateral symmetry, diporate, exine varying from tectate to semitectate. Al. nahoumii and Vriesea species presented pollen with bilateral symmetry, monocolpate; exine was semitectate, reticulate and heterobrochate. Germination percentage and tube growth were greater in SM and BKM media. Histochemical tests showed pollen viability above 70% for all species, except for Ananas sp. (40%). Pollen morphology is important for the identification of species, especially in this family, which contains a large number of species. High rates of viability favor fertilization and seed production, essential for efficient hybrid production and conservation.

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