8.4.6  Conclusion

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Multiple phytochrome genes and response classes, together with blue-light receptors, confer on plants a remarkable repertoire of light-sensing systems that operate through all stages of the life cycle and are effective across every light condition present in nature (Table 8.12). Starting with triggering or inhibiting germination, and the conversion from etiolated seedling growth to development of photosynthetic apparatus, photoreceptors assist plants to optimise their development, and phytochrome later becomes involved in photoperiod perception for flowering (see Section 8.3.2). Coping with growth under forest canopies, attempts to avoid shade and to perceive neighbouring plants — these all relate to sensing of direct sunlight and of light transmitted or reflected by other vegetation.

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