• The aim and scope of plant morphology—II

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    • Keywords


      Plant morphology; organic evolution; structure and function; organ definition; statistics and phylogeny

    • Abstract


      Evolution was in the beginning applied to the species. When genetics established the independent inheritance of characters, evolution also began to be analysed in terms of characters or organs, each considered independent in its evolutionary trend. Subsequently, however, this rule of independence began to be violated in the attempts to determine evolutionary status by correlation. Furthermore, the circumscription of an organ for evolutionary correlation is equivocal. With regard to the vegetative and floral morphology of the angiosperms, the concepts of old formal morphology in terms of fundamental organs were more definite and evolution has not been able to offer anything better. Many of the concepts of formal morphology havein toto been transferred to evolution.

      The principles laid down by Carlquist, in what he has proposed to be a function oriented approach to angiosperm morphology, appear to be based on undue assumptions with a mixing up of homology and evolution. The decline of evolution as the directive force behind plant morphology necessitates new approaches that could impart dynamism to this basic discipline of botanical study.

    • Author Affiliations


      K Periasamy1 B G L Swamy1

      1. Department of Botany, University of Madras Postgraduate Centre, Tiruchirapalli - 620 020
    • Dates


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