Agata Konarska

University of Life Sciences in Lublin


The structure of floral nectaries of ivy (Hedera helix) was investigated under light, scanning, and transmission electron microscopes. The nectar of ivy is located on top of the inferior ovary forming a distinct undulating disc between the base of petals and the style. The ivy nectary represents open and persistent nectaries. During consecutive days of anthesis, nectaries change their colour from green to brown. The secretory epidermis is covered with a thick, deeply striated cuticle, and nectar is released by nectarostomata. Epidermal cells exhibited plastids with plastoglobules and a few starch grains as well as vacuoles containing anthocyanins, the content of which increased during the successive days of anthesis and nectar secretion. Multi-layered glandular parenchyma and, underneath,
subglandular tissue are located under the epidermis. The nectary was supplied by vascular bundles with phloem and xylem. Numerous chloroplasts were visible in the cytoplasm of the external layers of glandular parenchyma; they were either typical with small starch grains or untypical with circular arrangement of thylakoids. Amyloplasts containing storage starch grains and numerous small vacuoles were present in the cells of deeper layers of the nectar-bearing tissue. Druses, flocculent residue, myelin figures and spherical deposits of unknown origin were visible in the gland parenchyma vacuoles.


Hedera helix, floral nectaries, nectarostomata, micromorphology, anatomy, ultrastructure

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Agata Konarska 
University of Life Sciences in Lublin



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