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Ovule ontogeny of Tabebuia pulcherrima Sandwith (Bignoniaceae): embryo sac development

Keywords: Embryo sac , megagametogenesis , female germ unit , cellularization , Tabebuia

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The chalazal megaspore develops in a Polygonum-type embryo sac. The amyloplast-rich endothelium is partially degraded during the expansion of the micropylar portion of the megagametophyte. Organization of the mature embryo sac is determined by the patterns of vacuolation, nuclear migration, spindle orientation and cellularization. The egg cell is slightly chalazal in relation to the synergids, and its micropylar end does not touch the micropylar channel. At the chalazal pole of the egg apparatus, the common walls between the synergids, the egg and central cells, despite their tenuity, are present in the mature megagametophyte. The polar nuclei do not fuse before fertilization and the antipodals are persistent until the first stages of endosperm formation. The taxonomic significance of some embryological characters for the Bignoniaceae is discussed.


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