Propagation of Sciadopitys verticillata (Thunb.) Sieb. & Zucc. by Stem Cuttings and Properties of Its Latex-like Sap

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  • 1 Department of Biological Sciences, East Tennessee State University, Box 70703, Johnson City, TN 37614
  • | 2 James H. Quillen Veterans Affairs Medical Center, Mountain Home, TN 37684; and Division of Infectious Diseases, Department of Internal Medicine, James H. Quillen College of Medicine, East Tennessee State University, Johnson City, TN 37614

To improve the success of vegetative propagation of Sciadopitys verticillata, stem cuttings were subjected to three treatments designed to minimize the accumulation of a latex-like sap at the cut ends of stems. A 24-hour soak in water before a hormone dip significantly enhanced rooting success and root mass. The water soak pretreatment was more beneficial to hardwood cuttings compared with softwood cuttings. Cuttings from shade-grown source trees showed the highest rooting success, but source tree age, height, and place of origin were not important factors. The water-insoluble latex-like sap had strong antibacterial activity against 3 of 11 bacterial species tested, but activity was not related to bacterial Gram reaction or the bacterial natural environment. In contrast, pine resins and latexes from selected angiosperms showed no antibacterial activity. The antibacterial component of the Sciadopitys latex-like sap was heat stable and therefore probably not protein based.

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