The advantages of clonal growth

Assign the morphological types to the corresponding drawings (by dragging and dropping the text boxes on the plants).

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1 - Morphological types
  • In clonal plants, rapid increases in size are possible and this enhances later survival and also the reproductive potential by seeds.
  • Movement is possible, which means that bad environments can be left for better ones.
  • Space can be occupied by horizontal growth and heterogeneously distributed resources (water, nutrients) can be captured to the disadvantage of potential competitors.
  • Structurally integrated clonal plants are able to transport resources to support part of a clone that suffers from stress, poor resources or losses due to herbivores or pathogens.
  • Because mother plants support young ramets, they have much lower mortality than young seedlings.
  • Competitors can be invaded and displaced; clonal growth is the most efficient way of an established population to persist.
  • The mortality risk of a genetic individual is low, successful individuals are able to rapidly increase in numbers.
  • Clonal reproduction incurs no cost of sex.