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Unformatted text preview: Introduction Plant communities are often exposed to intraspecific competition. Plants have a greater chance of survival if they demonstrate a plastic response (Sultan 2003). Plasticity is the ability of an organism to change its phenotype in response to environmental conditions. Plasticity is very important for sessile organisms because such immobile organisms must adapt to their environment or risk death (Griffith and Sultan 2006). Plasticity plays an important role in population regulation and establishing an ideal plant density for maximum productivity (Buckley and Ramula 2009). Brassica napus L., commonly known as canola, is a highly cultivated crop in North American agriculture. The seeds of canola produce an oil, low in saturated fat, that is suitable for human consumption (Ahmad and Gul 2004). Mature Brassica napus shows a plastic response by reducing plant production and increasing percent mortality with increasing densities. An experiment with Brassica napus was conducted to demonstrate the effect of three different densities on plasticity and plant mortality. Methods Various densities of mature Brassica napus were tested for effects of plastic response and percent mortality. Seeds were planted at densities of 2, 20 and 200 seeds per flat (325 m ). Seeds were 64 days old at time of harvest. Four replications of each density were used, giving a total of twelve flats. Variables at time of harvest....
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