African Journal of
Plant Science

  • Abbreviation: Afr. J. Plant Sci.
  • Language: English
  • ISSN: 1996-0824
  • DOI: 10.5897/AJPS
  • Start Year: 2007
  • Published Articles: 757

Full Length Research Paper

Taxonomic significance of foliar epidermal characters in the Caesalpinoideae

Aworinde David Olaniran*
  • Aworinde David Olaniran*
  • Department of Biological Sciences, Ondo State University of Science and Technology, Okitipupa, Ondo State, Nigeria.
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Fawibe Oluwasegun Olamide
  • Fawibe Oluwasegun Olamide
  • Department of Biological Sciences, Federal University of Agriculture Abeokuta, Ogun State, Nigeria.
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  •  Received: 31 July 2014
  •  Accepted: 21 October 2014
  •  Published: 31 October 2014

Abstract

A detailed morphological study of the leaf epidermis of some species in the genera Bauhinia  Linn., Caesalpinia Linn.  Daniellia Hutch. & Dalz. and Senna  Linn in Nigeria was undertaken in search of useful and stable taxonomic characters.  The study reveals several interesting epidermal features some of which are novel in the genera. Leaf epidermal characters such as epidermal cell types, stomata types and the presence of trichomes were constant in some species and variable in others, making them to be of great significance in determining the relationships among and within species. Stomata were amphistomatic in all the species except in Senna alata, Senna  siamea and Senna  siberiana which are epistomatic. The species showed variability in their stomata length, width, density and index, which was reflected in their taxonomic delimitations.

 

Key words: Taxonomy, Leaf epidermis, Bauhinia, Caesalpinia, Daniellia, Senna.