Biodiversity & Conservation

, Volume 15, Issue 10, pp 3207–3234 | Cite as

Reproductive Traits and Phenology of Plants in Tropical Dry Evergreen Forest on the Coromandel Coast of India

  • M. Arthur Selwyn
  • N. Parthasarathy


Qualitative reproductive traits of 84 plant species belonging to 41 families were studied in tropical dry evergreen forest on the Coromandel coast of India. Majority of species had rotate type, white-coloured, scented flowers, rewarding nectar and pollen and pollinated chiefly by bees. An association between floral traits and pollination spectrum is evident. Bee pollination was prevalent in pollination systems. Among the fruit types, drupe and berry were common in black and red colour respectively, and dispersed by zoochorous mode. Seeds of brown- and green-coloured dry fruits, without any reward were disseminated by wind and explosion. The reproductive phenophase of trees and lianas occurred mostly during the dry period from January to June, which receives rainfall of less than 50 mm a month. However, shrubs showed a peak in flowering and fruiting in wet period. Detailed phenological observations of 22 woody species revealed a seasonal and unimodal pattern in flowering. Although some species were in flower round the year, flowering activity was skewed towards the dry season. The fruiting activity showed a bimodal pattern, one peak in dry season and another in wet season. Many species displayed a temporal aggregation in flowering and fruiting. The significant relation was obtained between reproductive traits and phenology of plants in the tropical dry evergreen forest.


Flower traits Fruit traits Life-forms Phenology Pollination systems Seed dispersal modes Tropical dry evergreen forest 


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© Springer 2006

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Ecology and Environmental SciencesPondicherry UniversityPondicherryIndia

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