Petiole anatomical characteristics of true mangrove species in Kerala
S Surya, N Hari
Petiole anatomy of 15 mangrove species in Kerala was investigated to identify and determine its systematic significance that may be useful in species identification and classification. Variations in petiole anatomical attributes were obvious that they could be used as systematic evidence to taxonomically delineate these taxa even at species level. The use of petiolar anatomical features in systematic description of mangrovespecies is maiden and innovative and reported for the first time. Findings in this study have shown some common characters and variations in the petiole anatomical characteristics. Petiole anatomical characteristics observed included petiole outlines, patterns of petiole vascular bundles, presence of sclerenchyma cells, presence of phloem sclerenchyma cells, presence of tanniferous and idioblast cells, presence and types of crystals, presence of lignified parenchyma cells, and presence and types of trichomes. Results showed that petiole anatomical characteristics can be used as additional data in identification and classification of species in the genus.