Plants from Open and Shade habitats in two natural populations (Vršac and Avala) were grown in two densities (High and Low). As expected, density had significant effect on most of measured traits and that effect was concordant with Shade avoidance syndrome predictions. Genetic differences between populations both in mean trait values and in plastic responses to density were also detected. Number of leaves and flowers showed plasticity in Avala population only, while shoot weight was plastic in both populations but with greater plasticity in Avala population. Differences between habitats for plant height and number of internodes were present in Vršac population only. Habitat difference in response to density was revealed for seed weight and it was due to lack of response in plants originated from Shade habitat in Vršac population. This study showed that not only populations, but also subpopulations occupying different habitats can differ genetically in their plastic response to density, and that between-habitat differences can be population-specific.
Russian Journal of Genetics – Springer Journals
Published: Mar 15, 2006
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