Wang,H (reprint author),Chinese Acad Sci,Key Lab Plant Biodivers & Biogeog East Asia,Kunming 650201,Yunnan,Peoples R China.
An increasing global demand for food, coupled with the widespread decline of pollinator diversity, remains an international concern in agriculture and genetic conservation. In particular, there are large gaps in the study of the pollination of economically important and traditionally grown species in China. Many plant species grown in China are both edible and used medicinally. The country retains extensive written records of agricultural and apicultural practices, facilitating contemporary studies of some important taxa. Here, we focus on Yunnan in southwestern China, a mega-biodiversity hotspot for medicinal/food plants. We used plant and insect taxa as model systems to understand the patterns and consequences of pollinator deficit to crops. We identified several gaps and limitations in research on the pollination ecology and breeding systems of domesticated taxa and their wild relatives in Yunnan and asked the following questions: (1) What is known about pollination systems of edible and medicinal plants in Yunnan? (2) What are the most important pollinators of Codonopsis subglobosa (Campanulaceae)? (3) How important are native pollinator species for maximizing yield in Chinese crops compared with the introduced Apis mellifera ? We found that some crops that require cross-pollination now depend exclusively on hand pollination. Three domesticated crops are dependent primarily on the native but semidomesticated Apis cerana and the introduced A. mellifera. Other species of wild pollinators often play important roles for certain specialty crops (e. g., Vespa velutina pollinates Codonopsis subglobosa). We propose a more systematic and comprehensive approach to applied research in the future.
1.Chinese Acad Sci, Key Lab Plant Biodivers & Biogeog East Asia, Kunming 650201, Yunnan, Peoples R China 2.Chinese Acad Sci, Plant Germplasm & Genom Ctr, Germplasm Bank Wild Species, Kunming Inst Bot, Kunming 650201, Yunnan, Peoples R China 3.St Louis Univ, Dept Biol, St Louis, MO 63103 USA
Ren,Zong-Xin;Wang,Hong;Bernhardt,Peter;Li,De-Zhu.INSECT POLLINATION AND SELF-INCOMPATIBILITY IN EDIBLE AND/OR MEDICINAL CROPS IN SOUTHWESTERN CHINA, A GLOBAL HOTSPOT OF BIODIVERSITY,AMERICAN JOURNAL OF BOTANY,2014,63(6):933-950