Genetic structure and morphological variation of British populations of the hybrid Potamogeton x salicifolius

J. B. Fant*, C. D. Preston

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

18 Scopus citations


Potamogeton x salicifolius Wolfg. is one of the three most frequently recorded Potamogeton hybrids in the British Isles and Europe. It is thought to be the hybrid between P. lucens and P. perfoliatus. Its scattered distribution suggests that it has arisen several times in Britain. Most British populations of P. x salicifolius can be identified by their morphological characteristics, which are intermediate between those of the putative parents P. lucens and P. perfoliatus. However, the population at the Ouse Washes, Cambridgeshire, differs from other populations in its greater similarity to P. lucens. A genetic study of eight British populations, using six isozyme systems, revealed that most populations consist of a single multi-enzyme phenotype. This suggests that they were the result of a single hybridization event and are therefore maintained through vegetative reproduction. By contrast, the Ouse Washes population consists of three multi-enzyme phenotypes. This variation is likely to have resulted from multiple hybridization events, although we cannot exclude the possibility that the plants are partially fertile. The isozyme systems studied were unable to identify P. lucens and P. perfoliatus unambiguously, and consequently did not provide evidence for their putative parentage of P. x salicifolius. However, at a local level the banding patterns of the hybrids were generally consistent with the local multi-enzyme phenotypes of these putative parents.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)99-111
Number of pages13
JournalBotanical Journal of the Linnean Society
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 2004


  • Genetic variability
  • Hybrid origin
  • Isozymes
  • PAGE
  • Population structure
  • Vegetative propagation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Ecology, Evolution, Behavior and Systematics
  • Plant Science


Dive into the research topics of 'Genetic structure and morphological variation of British populations of the hybrid Potamogeton x salicifolius'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this