Provenance Variations in Morphological Characteristics of Acacia karroo Hayne Seedlings

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Khalil, A.A. M.
Abdelkheir, R. M.
Ibrahim, A.M.
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Faculty of Agriculture, University of Khartoum, Shambat, Sudan
This study was carried out to assess the extent of intraspecific variation in morphological characteristics of the seedlings of Acacia karroo. Ten provenances from the natural range of the species in southern Africa were collected from Namibia, South Africa, Zimbabwe and Mozambique. The morphological attributes were assessed in 5-month-old seedlings grown in the nursery using large containers filled with a mixture of silt and sand. The results showed significant (P£0.05) variations among provenances in morphological characteristics and biomass production and allocation. Clinal variations in number of leaves per seedling, number of pinnae per leaf and number of leaflets per pinna, with variations in rainfall, longitude and altitude gradients were detected, an attestation of adaptability of these traits to water availability and elevation. The observed variation among the provenances could be used for selection of seed sources suitable for plantation establishment in specified ecoclimatic zones.
Page(s):12 (2), 219-234,11Ref.