oa African Entomology - Glandular trichomes on the exotic Solanum sisymbriifolium Lamarck (Solanaceae): effective deterrents against an indigenous South African herbivore



An examination of the leaves of several native and exotic Solanum species revealed that they all possessed glandular and non-glandular trichomes. The density of glandular trichomes was, however, very much lower on the leaves of the indigenous species than on the leaves of a weed species, Solanum sisymbriifolium Lamarck, and two other South American Solanum species. This difference could have contributed to the depauperate faunas supported by the exotic species. The morphology and behaviour of an indigenous Solanum-feeding tortoise beetle, Conchyloctenia tigrina Oliver (Coleoptera: Chrysomelidae), and a South American tortoise beetle, Gratiana spadicea (IQug) (Coleoptera: Chrysomelidae), were compared. The study revealed that while the exudate produced by the glandular trichomes afforded S. sisymbriifolium a level of resistance to C. tigrina, it is probably only one of the factors limiting the recruitment of indigenous herbivores onto S. sisymbriifolium.


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