Monocarpic plans

lou jost
Tue, 22 Mar 2011 11:53:32 PDT
If the term "monocarpic" is to be useful, I would think it needs a more technical definition, or it needs to be qualified by modifiers. It would most useful, I think, to save this word for the unambiguous cases, in which the plant as a genetic entity dies shortly after flowering. Offshoots are genetically the same individual as the original plant, and are connected to the original plant through its own living tissue, at least initially, so Cardiocrinum could not be monocarpic in this strict sense. Most species of bromeliads also flower and then slowly die, and produce offshoots as they die, or perhaps a bit before they die. Are these bromeliads monocarpic? And if so, then what about sympodial orchds like Cattleyas? The flowering growth dies after flowering, though it can take many years; meanwhile it sprouts one or more new growths. Are these orchids monocarpic? Nobody I know would say that. So it seems to me if you don't want to slide down the slippery
 slope of ambiguity that leaves the word virtually meaningless, it would be best to use a stricter definition.


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