Stem Anatomy Influences Rooting of Cuttings from Bur Oak, Quercus macrocarpa

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  • 1 Montana State Univ., Plant Sciences and Plant Pathology, Bozeman, MT 59717
  • | 2 Montana State Univ., Plant Sciences and Plant Pathology, Bozeman, MT 59717

Bur oak, Quercus macrocarpa Michaux, does not root readily from cuttings, and is considered a recalcitrant species. A method producing industry-acceptable levels of rooted cuttings has not been determined. In this study, we explored the possibility of a physical barrier to root initiation. Bur oak stems exhibit a pentarch vascular cylinder, with roots and leaf traces only initiating at the five “points” of the vascular system. External to this vascular system is a series of sclerified tissue, both fibers and sclerenchyma. Both light microscopy and electron microscopy were utilized to determine whether a combination hedging and etiolation treatment of parent plants would inhibit formation of sclerified tissues.

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