Master's Theses

Date of Award

Fall 1978

Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)

Department

Biology

Advisor

Robert Nicholson

Abstract

The purpose of this study was to examine selected aspects of the life history and autecology of slimflower scurfpea (Psoralea tenuiflora Pursh.). To measure growth rate and phenology, naturally occurring seedlings were marked after germination in early April. Seedlings lived for 10 weeks and grew to an average height of 14 cm at which time shoots died but the roots remained alive. Mature plants were sampled weekly. Standing crop, frequency, density, biomass per plant, number of stems per plant, biomass per unit area, and leaf: stem ratio were estimated throughout the 1978 growing season. One- stemmed plants were more frequent than three-stemmed plants per unit area but three-stemmed plants produced as much biomass per unit area as the one stemmed plants. Mature slimflower scurf pea started growth during the second week in April, reached maximum standing crop by the middle of June and produced flowers and seeds from June until frost or stem abscission. Tests of interspecific association were attempted between slimflower scurfpea and Japanese brome (Bromus Japonicus), and slimflower scurf pea and we stern ragweed (Ambrosia psilostachya). No segregation of populations was found. Insect herbivory was noted on all plant parts. Most damage was done by a moth larva (Schinia jaquaria) that consumed 43% of the slim flower scurfpea seeds from one sample in 1977. Herbivory by three other insects was documented (Apion oblitum, Diabrotica, sp., and Diaphreomera velii).

Rights

Copyright 1978 David L. Price

Comments

Notice: This material may be protected by copyright law (Title 17 U.S. Code).

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