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Photoperiodism in the Plant Kingdom


THE announcement of the formative effect of such a dilute factor as relative length of day and night, introduced by Garner and Allard1 as photoperiodism, has become the subject for many studies by ecologists and physiologists. Although different investigators hold divergent and conflicting views as to the exact class even of forms and races within a species, not to speak of the class of distinct species, there seems to be a general consensus of opinion as to the existence in the plant kingdom of three categories or groups of plants in respect of the so-called photoperiodic response or photoperiodic adaptation. The existence, however, of the very large neutral group which possesses no clearly defined critical photoperiod2 might almost alone indicate the invalidity of that classification; but the fundamental fallacy lies in the study of photoperiodism as an isolated episode, without any reference to the preceding (including seed ripening) and subsequent periods in the life-history of the plants.

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WHYTE, R., OLJHOVIKOV, M. Photoperiodism in the Plant Kingdom. Nature 143, 301–302 (1939).

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