Godwin Norense Osarumwense Asemota

Keywords: Adaptation, divergence angle, double-bunching, fibonacci, pseudostem.

Abstract: Bifurcation and phyllotaxy are common and important processes in plants. Plantain leaf bifurcation occurs naturally in Lagos, Nigeria, especially for double-bunching plantains. Plantain leaf bifurcation studies are important because of the perceived special qualities impacted to the plantain pseudostem. Quasi-quantitative techniques were used for this study. As a result, both the physical presentation of the divided leaflets and bunches overhang characteristics were used to predict the most likely positioning of the plantain bunches overhang based on the work done by the plantain pseudostem itself. The results showed that the divergence angle of about 10° between the divided leaflets does not seem to agree with the tenets of the Fibonacci sequence of using the golden mean. The 90° bunches overhang can be used to predict at least two overhang positions. That is, in the same direction and also at 180° out of phase with each other. Similarly, the bifurcated leaflets presentation with four edges to the atmosphere seems to confer some compensatory adaptation to the environment. The thermodynamic implication of the four edges in the bifurcated leaflets ensure increased random mixing and transfer of greater amounts of carbon dioxide, water vapour and energy for improved photosynthate production. Consequently, plantain leaf bifurcation is an efficient self-organising method for coping with more food production under nutrients constraints.

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