Abstract Meiotic chromosome numbers and observations were made in eleven species belonging to nine different genera of Bambusoideae. The numbers include counts in eight species that have never been investigated cytologically:Arundinaria aff.amabilis (n=24), Chusquea bambusoides (n=ca. 20),Cryptochloa dressleri (n=11), Olyra ciliatifolia (n=11), Sucrea monophylla (n=11), Raddia brasiliensis (n=11), Strephium distichophyllum (n=11), andPariana aurita (n=22). The generaStrephium andSucrea have not been studied previously with respect to their chromosomes. The significance of these results are discussed in relation to the over 140 published counts in the subfamily, which indicates a preponderance of polyploidy in the woody members, or bamboos, but not in their herbaceous allies. Aneuploidy is rare in the former but frequent in the latter. It is postulated that the herbaceous bambusoids, which flower every year and produce recombinants regularly and in short-time cycles, could have tolerated successive reductions of the linkage groups and their genetic flexibility. These changes would not have been favored in the bamboos, which have more genetic constancy due to the long lapse (often 20120 years) between flowering generations.
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