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Data from: Effectiveness of modern leaf analysis tools for the morpho-ecological study of plants: the case of Primula albenensis Banfi et Ferl

Citation

Giupponi, Luca; Giorgi, Annamaria (2019), Data from: Effectiveness of modern leaf analysis tools for the morpho-ecological study of plants: the case of Primula albenensis Banfi et Ferl, Dryad, Dataset, https://doi.org/10.5061/dryad.0722ps8

Abstract

Scientific and technological progress has led to the creation of analysis tools that have revolutionized traditional studies of morphology and plant ecology. Recent methods and tools which, on the basis of leaf samples, allow the development of geometric morphometric analyses and the evaluation of functional strategy are good examples. These methods, still little used, have never been applied on the same leaf samples to obtain information on their morphometry and on the ecology of the plants at the same time. This article discusses the effectiveness of modern leaf analysis tools for geometric morphometrics (outline analysis) and studies of functional strategies based on the competitor-stress tolerator-ruderal (CSR) scheme, using a study of a steno-endemic plant of the Alps, Primula albenensis Banfi et Ferl. as an example. These aspects were analyzed using the same leaf samples collected in the only two areas where this species grows. CSR analyses revealed that P. albenensis is not a stress-tolerant species (C:S:R = 37:1:62), as previously thought. Moreover, no significant intraspecific differences emerged as regards functional strategy. Instead, outline analysis highlighted a significant difference (p < 0.001) between the leaves collected in the two sampling areas which differ mainly in the width of the leaf blade and petiole. The results of this study and others reported in the literature therefore suggest that these modern methods of leaf analysis are cheap, effective and relatively simple to perform. Furthermore, researchers are able to carry out geometric morphometric and CSR analysis using the same samples of leaves in order to maximize the information content provided by the analysis of plant material which is sometimes not easily available.

Usage Notes

Location

Orobic pre-Alps
Italian Alps