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Thread: Lollons

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    Tropical Fish Enthusiast jimscott's Avatar
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    Not sure if this is the right forum for this topic, but occasionally the term lollon has been used, but I do not not know hat part of the plant it is or its function. I have seen thin, stringy, non-flowering, non-leaf plant parts projecting from my utrics. Are they lollons or potential flower stalks?

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    Strictly speaking, Utricularia don't have true leaves or roots, these should all be referred to as stolons. The term 'lolon' was coined by Tamlin to refer to those stolons which have a photosynthetic (they are green), leaf function and occur above the soil (L for leaf and olon from stolon). The name seems to have stuck amongst growers here at Terra Forums.

    Taylor, in his book 'The Genus Utricularia - a taxonomic monograph' (the utric bible), uses the term leaf for these structures, whilst acknowledgeing that they are not true leaves.

    Vic
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    Tropical Fish Enthusiast jimscott's Avatar
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    Interesting. How are they different than the "green structures" that are wider and shorter, that I would refer to as being leaves? Does that make sense?

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    Moderator Colieo's Avatar
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    I believe what you are thinking of are the lolons (photosynthetic stolons). There are also "rolons", the parts of the plants under the substrate, doing the root-like buisness. Does that make sense?

    Cole
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    Tropical Fish Enthusiast jimscott's Avatar
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    Stolons and lolons and rolons, oh my! Under the substrate? These are above the substrate. Are they like probing above ground?

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    N=R* fs fp ne fl fi fc L Pyro's Avatar
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    Jim,

    What you call a "leaf" is what the group her commonly refers to a "lolons" for the reason Vic cited. And then there are the "rolons" that Cole talked about. Anything that is transitional (i.e. it is growing half ont the surface and half under the surface) I generally refer to as just a stolon. And then there are the aerial stolons that you get with some species like nelumbifolia that are a means of 'jumping ship' to a new location.
    'My love was science- specifically biology and, more specifically, when placed in a common jar, which of two organisms would devour the other.'

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    Please could someone let me know the reason why the leaf-like organs of Utricularia should be called stolons. As I understand it, a stolon is a horizontal stem bearing leaves and roots at the nodes - this description more-or-less fits for what Taylor terms the stolons of Utricularia, but not the 'leaves'.

    It may well be true that Utricularia lacks 'true' leaves & roots, but that does make the whole plant composed of modified stems. To the best of my knowledge, neither Taylor nor Lloyd use the term 'photosynthetic stolon' (In The Genus Utricularia and The Carnivorous Plants respectively.
    If you can gain access to it, this article contains a useful discussion of Utricularia morphology:

    Rolf Rutishauser and Brigitte Isler
    Developmental Genetics and Morphological Evolution of Flowering Plants, Especially Bladderworts (Utricularia): Fuzzy Arberian Morphology Complements Classical Morphology
    Ann Bot 2001 88: 1173-1202, 10.1006/anbo.2001.1498

    Their mainthesis is that, rather than compartmentalising morphology into rigid boxes of leaves, shoots, roots etc., we should remember that plants result from complex developmental processes and need not conform to conventional ideas of morphology. It may not be that Utricularia have lost their roots without trace, but that genes usually responsible for root development are involved in the development of various organs such as the stolons and rhizoids. My own view is that, in the absence of clear evidence in favour of calling them something different, there is nothing wrong with calling the leaf-like organs leaves.

    Giles

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    gardenofeden's Avatar
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    hear hear!!
    leaves is the most appropriate term!!
    Stephen
    Sarracenia rosea?...don't be ridiculous!

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