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Keywords:

  • Geitonogamy;
  • Hound’s-Tongue;
  • multilocus DNA fingerprinting (GATA)4;
  • selective abortion

We measured the relationship between selfing rates and flower number in an experimental population of bumblebee pollinated Cynoglossum officinale, with plants differing in flower number. Results were compared with the prediction of a model based on pollen dynamics and pollinator behaviour. The selfing rate, as measured by multilocus oligonucleotide DNA fingerprinting, increased with flower number and ranged from 0% to 70%. Flowers on large plants received an equal number of visits from bumblebees as flowers on small plants. On large plants more flowers in a row were visited, inducing geitonogamy. The overall relationship between selfing rate and number of flowers can be explained by pollen dynamics and pollinator behaviour without invoking postpollination processes such as differential pollen tube growth and abortion.