Polyploidization plays a critical role in plant evolution. The majority of neopolyploids do not become established, either because they have fewer potential mates, or may not be able to successfully compete with co-occurring progenitors at lower ploidy levels. Casazza et al. assess floral traits and ecological preferences that might be involved in establishment and persistence for polyploids of Primula marginata and Primula allionii and their hexaploid progenitors.
The results might explain the origin of polyploidized populations, suggesting that dodecaploids established and persisted by occupying geographical areas not yet filled by their closest relatives yet without significant evolution in their climatic and pollination niches.