Student Research

Determining Whether Watermelon (C. lanatus) Pollen Remains Viable Over a Period of Time to Contribute to Secondary Pollen Transfer.

Pollinator performance has relied on measuring many factors, including the amount of pollen a given bee species can carry at a time, and the frequency a species visits flowers. However, it is possible that other factors are not being investigated that could otherwise contribute to our understanding of pollinator/pollination dynamics, such as secondary pollen transfer. This involves pollen being left on a non‐stigmatic surface of a flower (i.e. the petals) from a previous pollinator, which is then retransferred to the stigma by a subsequent pollinator. However, this process is still not fully understood, especially if the pollen grains are able to remain viable during the period they are on the petals to when they are retransferred, and therefore contribute to the pollen load on the stigma. My thesis proposal aims to investigate whether or not diploid pollen grains in watermelon (Citrullus lanatus (Thunb.), family Cucurbitaceae) can remain viable during secondary pollen transfer.

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