Testing potential selective agents acting on leaf shape in Ipomoea hederacea: predictions based on an adaptive leaf shape cline
Article first published online: 20 JUN 2013
© 2013 The Authors. Ecology and Evolution published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd.
This is an open access article under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits use, distribution and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.
Ecology and Evolution
Volume 3, Issue 8, pages 2409–2423, August 2013
How to Cite
Ecology and Evolution 2013; 3(8): 2409–2423
- Issue published online: 12 AUG 2013
- Article first published online: 20 JUN 2013
- Manuscript Accepted: 6 MAY 2013
- Manuscript Received: 29 APR 2013
- NSERC Canada
- flowering time;
- insect herbivory;
- Ipomoea hederacea (ivyleaf morning glory);
- leaf shape;
- relative growth rate;
- selective agents;
Leaf shape is a highly variable phenotype, and is likely influenced by many sources of selection. Ipomoea hederacea exhibits an adaptive latitudinal cline in leaf shape, which is controlled by a single Mendelian locus: lobed individuals dominate the north with entire-shaped individuals mostly in the south. We test if the following candidate selective agents, suggested by the literature, are responsible for the cline: differential insect herbivory, genetic correlations with other clinal traits like flowering time and growth rate, and thermoregulatory differences. We planted 1680 F3 individuals, segregating for leaf shape, in the north of I. hederacea's range, where we expected lobed genotypes to have higher fitness. Individuals were assigned to insect removal or control treatments, and we scored herbivory, flowering time, growth rate, leaf temperature, and fitness (seed number). Herbivory, flowering, and growth rate had significant fitness effects, but none differed between leaf shapes. Lobed leaves were consistently warmer at night, but no performance advantage was detected. Finally, we detected no overall fitness differences between leaf shape genotypes, whether we controlled for other traits under selection or not. Our data suggest these candidate selective agents may not be important contributors to the cline, and alternative approaches to understanding the mechanisms maintaining the leaf shape cline in I. hederacea may be necessary.