Clonal integration in Panicum trugidum

Many invasive plants are clonal, however little is known about clonal integration. The discussion expounds more on clonal integration on Panicum turgidum, a drought and salt tolerant plant that is used for erosion control, thatching, fodder, and production of flour (Al-Khateeb 2006). Further, it focuses on the establishment of raments either randomly and genetically. The discussion also outlines the major benefits of clonal integration in plants.Panicum turgidum is plant that is very common in Arabia, Senegal, Pakistan and in most parts across the Sahara desert (Al-Khateeb 2006). The plant is widely referred as Tuman, Taman or Thaman in Arabia and Egypt (Al-Khateeb 2006). In Sahara Arabics, it is referred to as Markouba or Merkba. Other names that commonly refers to Panicum turgidum is Guinchi and Du-ghasi especially in Somalia (Al-Khateeb 2006). Most plants do not tolerate in saline areas, however, Panicum Turgidum is a salt resistance plant (xerohalophyte). Photosynthesis in saline plants is generally lower compared to non-saline environment. This is attributed to the limited uptake of carbon dioxide, reduced stomata size, and chlorophyll content. this leads to reduction in plant growth (Hartnett 1993). Competition among the plant also reduces the quantum yield of photosynthesis. It also limits the growth of leaves, stolon length and ramets.Connected raments of clonal Panicum turgidum plants share carbohydrates, water, and nutrients through clonal integration. Studies have shown that clonal integration in Panicum turgidum facilitates establishments of newly produced ramets. Clonal integration also improves chances of survival and reproduction of adult ramets in Panicum turgidum. Importantly, it also helps genets to occupy more open space. The discussed positive effects of clonal integration in Panicum turgidum help the plants to have competitive edge over plants

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