What was being studied about pollination and plant function in 1919

Title: The physiology and biology of excretions.

Author: Stahl, Ernst.

Published in: Flora, volumn 113, pages 1-113, (1919).

Abstract: "With the disappearance of nitrates in many plants there is an increase in the Ca oxalate content. The supplying of org. and inorg. Ca compds. to Dianthus and other plants causes them to form oxalic acid continuously. Ca is inactivated through combination with other acids. The importance of the watery excretions of the plant lies in the field of salt economy. Plants with a large amt. of excretion show a rapid growth and are autotrophic, whereas plants lacking guttation are slow-growing and very often are mycotrophic. A function of the hydathodes may also be to rid the plant of certain substances which may cause injury if allowed to accumulate. The state of stomatal opening has a direct relation to nyctinastic, hydronastic, and chemonastic movements. The substances remaining after evapg. the guttation liquid to dryness always contain ash substances, often with large amts. of org. substances. Extra floral nectaries also excrete ash substances as well as sugars. In many cases there seems to be a certain relation between the ash content of a plant and the excretory ability. Those plants which secrete freely have a low ash content while those lacking the power of secretion (Chenopodium album) have a high ash content. There seems to be a relation between guttation and crystal formation. Plants with a large amt. of excretion show little crystal formation, whereas those with a large amt. of crystal formation show little or no guttation. There seems to be a relation between secretory activity and the type of protection against animal feeding. Thorns and spines are found mainly on plants with limited or no excretory activity. Plants (Equisetum, grasses) with an active guttation show a protective covering of silicates. Many leaves cease their excretory activity when they change position. This cessation of guttation is probably bound up with factors influencing transpiration. There is a certain relation between guttation and pollen production.

The Rosaceae with prolific pollen production are characterized by a heavy guttation, while the Papilionaceae with a limited pollen production are slow-growing and show little or no guttation."

Sooooo…if you were to extrapolate this information out a bit further you could form a hypothesis that roses grown in soil with higher mycorrhizae content that is effectively infecting the root systems of the roses, could possibly increase pollen production and viability. Or did I just totally miss the boat on that?

I do not know. It did not make much sense to me. Too many words that I never heard of or used in ways that I am not familar with.

Dave Z, can you interpret?

Boy, he IS all over the place. The points I find interesting are that he says that plants lacking guttation (how is that different from transpiration?) are slow-growing and very often are mycotrophic. In roses, he’s correlating heavy gluttation with heavy pollen production. One might interpret from this that it’s possible that an increase in mycorrhyzae might decrease gluttation, which therefore might decrease pollen production.

I had actually a slightly different take on that I suppose. He mentioned that the plants that were less vigorous with less gluttation, and less pollen production were often mycotrophic (dependent on mychorrizae). So I took that as a statement they produce less because they are dependent and therfor do not carry out these functions well when mychorrizae is low. I extrapolated in the assumption that those that are not dependent on mychorrizae for nutrient uptake (Roses) could benefit from the addition of mychorrizae. Perhaps not exacty what he was getting at here, but sort of goes in that direction I think. I did end up finding other articles last night that said this same thing a bit more clearly that this rather wordy, bouncing around like ping-pong, type of paper. LOL I’ll have to get them later today from my home computer again.

Oh by the way…I wondered the same thing about guttation. Turns out that it is different from transpiration in that water is secreted out of the leaf veins when water is not effectivey exiting through the transpiration process (where water exits through the stomata into the atmosphere). Pretty interesting…

Ping-pong paper is right! It’s less of an abstract and more of a random thought compilation LOL. He’d never get away with an abstract like that in my classes!

Thanks for posting the difference between gluttation and transpiration.

I’m surprised that mycorrhizae were known back then. It turns out that they were discovered in the 1880s.

There seem to be some contradictions in what he’s saying. For example, he says that members of the Rosaceae exhibit heavy guttation, but that thorns and spines are mainly found on plants that don’t exhibit heavy guttation. Members of the genus Rosa are certainly thorny. Maybe he was studying Rosaceae genera other than Rosa. I’ve rarely seen guttation in rose leaves, and I wouldn’t have called it heavy.

As to there being a relationship between guttation and pollen production, it seems far-fetched. Perhaps it is just a coincidence that resulted from his selection of plants to be studied.

Jim, I was rather surprised to read that they were aware of mycorrhizae as well, given that it seems like it is more of a recent focus. Perhaps the awareness didn’t necessarily trigger study into the actual effects and/or benefits of them at that time however? Very interesting though… And yeah, I tried to make sense of that part about the thorns as well, but wasn’t following him there, so I just focused on what had piqued my interest which was the nutrient uptake/mychorrhizae relation to pollen production.

Jude, not surprised to hear that from you! :astonished:) You’ve got that logical from step 1 to 2, then 3 process about you…not a 1 to 3 then back to 2 type of person at all! LOL This guy had me thinking of the absent minded professor a few times while reading through it. LOL

Oh, I did stumble on this photo while looking into some of this other stuff. I’ve never really looked for guttation myself (since I hadn’t actually looked into it before last night).

Link: www.visualsunlimited.com/browse/vu317/vu317136.html

Wow! Good find, Michelle!

Wow! Good find, Michelle!