Yan Rui: A Novel Cultivar of Xanthoceras sorbifolium Bunge

Authors:
Xuebin Wang State Key Laboratory of Efficient Production of Forest Resources, Beijing Forestry University, No. 35 Qinghua East Road, Haidian District, Beijing 100083, China; Key Laboratory for Silviculture and Conservation, Ministry of Education, Beijing Forestry University, No. 35 Qinghua East Road, Haidian District, Beijing 100083, China; and Beijing Laboratory of Urban and Rural Ecological Environment, No. 35 Qinghua East Road, Haidian District, Beijing 100083, China

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Yan Ao State Key Laboratory of Efficient Production of Forest Resources, Beijing Forestry University, No. 35 Qinghua East Road, Haidian District, Beijing 100083, China; Key Laboratory for Silviculture and Conservation, Ministry of Education, Beijing Forestry University, No. 35 Qinghua East Road, Haidian District, Beijing 100083, China; and Beijing Laboratory of Urban and Rural Ecological Environment, No. 35 Qinghua East Road, Haidian District, Beijing 100083, China

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Yellow-horn (Xanthoceras sorbifolium Bunge) is a deciduous shrub or small tree species that is native to China and is mainly distributed in 16 provinces in Northeast, Northwest, and North China. It is an important woody oil tree species known as the “northern Camellia oleifera” owing to the similarities between these two species (Chang et al. 2019). Yellow-horn has high ecological, ornamental, edible, and medicinal value (Liu et al. 2017). Seed kernels can be used to produce edible oils (Ao and Ma 2012), and the leaves and flowers are used in tea and medicine. In addition, it is often used in landscaping because of its aesthetic shape, bright flower color, and long flowering period (Xu et al. 2010). Because of these valuable traits, yellow-horn has attracted considerable attention in recent years and has been widely cultivated (Yang et al. 2021). Great progress has been made in the cultivation of yellow-horn varieties (Wang et al. 2019). Yellow-horn is widespread throughout northern China. Its distribution across a heterogeneous set of habitats has resulted in the development of numerous varieties of the plant. Great progress has been made in the collection of yellow-horn germplasm and the construction of core germplasm (Shen et al. 2017). Recently, with outstanding characteristics in leaf shape, flower shape, flower color, fruit, and yield, many cultivars have been cultivated successively, including, Yan xia (Chen et al. 2021), Yan Ya (Zhao et al. 2022), and Yan Dong (Lian et al. 2022). Currently, more than 30 cultivars of yellow-horn have been licensed as new varieties by the National Forestry and Grassland Administration.

‘Yan Rui’ emerged from the rich morphological variation characteristics of yellow-horn in Jul 2016 in Shandong Province and was selected for cultivation. As a new cultivar, Yan Rui is propagated through grafting to ensure that each plant inherits the excellent ornamental characteristics of the parent tree. Furthermore, it exhibits strong adaptability to cold and drought and can grow well on saline–alkali land with electrical conductivity <2.28 ms/cm and pH 7.0 ∼8.7. In Jun 2021, ‘Yan Rui’ was licensed as a novel variety by the National Forestry and Grassland Administration.

Origin

In 2016, the ‘Yan Rui’ mother tree was discovered in a yellow-horn nursery in Dongying City, Shandong Province, China. The flowers on this tree displayed more petals (six to seven) compared with the typical number (five) in flowers of other yellow-horn trees, making it unique. The Mengguan 1 cultivar is similar to ‘Yan Rui’ with excellent ornamental value. The differences in their characteristics are listed in Table 1 and Fig. 1. Scions of ‘Yan Rui’ were collected from the mother tree in Jul 2016 and grafted immediately onto 1-year-old yellow-horn seedling rootstocks. The second-generation grafting was performed in Jul 2017, with scions collected from the plants grafted in 2016; the survival rate was >95%. The flowers of grafted plants of the 2 years (2016 and 2017) exhibited the same stable characters as the mother tree, indicating that the mutation was stable. The stability of the flower’s character and general uniformity of ‘Yan Rui’ were verified through the use of grafted plants distributed across multiple areas in China, that is, Chifeng City, Inner Mongolia (Fig. 2A), Chaoyang City, Liaoning Province (Fig. 2B), and Sanmenxia City, Henan Province (Fig. 2C).

Table 1.

Comparison of ‘Yan Rui’ and ‘Mengguan 1’ flowers.

Table 1.
Fig. 1.
Fig. 1.

Comparison of ‘Yan Rui’ and ‘Mengguan 1’. (A) The typical six to seven petals in ‘Yan Rui’ flowers. (B) ‘Mengguan 1’ usually has five petals.

Citation: HortScience 59, 4; 10.21273/HORTSCI17682-23

Fig. 2.
Fig. 2.

The nurseries and flowers of ‘Yan Rui’ in different regions of China: (A) in Chifeng City, Inner Mongolia; (B) in Chaoyang City, Liaoning Province; and (C) in Sanmenxia City, Henan Province.

Citation: HortScience 59, 4; 10.21273/HORTSCI17682-23

Plant Characteristics

‘Yan Rui’ could be cultivated in northern China. It is a small- to medium-sized deciduous tree. The current year branches of ‘Yan Rui’ are green (L* = 90, a* = 99, b* = 20) or purplish-red (L* = 31, a* = 12, and b* = 18) [according to the LABORATORY color model, L denotes lightness; A denotes red to green; and B denotes yellow to the blue (Dong et al. 2022)]. The leaves of ‘Yan Rui’ are imparipinnate and lanceolate in shape. The young leaves are yellow green (L* = 66, a* = −17, b* = 64), and the mature leaves turn green (L* = 27, a* = −24, b* = 34). The leaves are slightly curly and hairless. Raceme flowers of ‘Yan Rui’ appear before or simultaneously with the leaves. The inflorescence is cylindrical with a green (L* = 49, a* = −13, b* = 48) or purple (L* = 27, a* = 2, b* = 29) axis. The petals are broadly ovate and slightly rolled along their length. The color of the petals varies at different flowering stages. The upper part of the petals is white (L* = 96, a* = −1, b* = 2) during all flowering stages. The lower part of the petals is yellow (L* = 61, a* = −4, b* = 64) at the early flowering stage, light purple-pink (L* = 48, a* = 32, b* = 28) at the full flowering stage, and purplish-red (L* = 25, a* = 45, b* = 33) at the final flowering stage. An outstanding feature of ‘Yan Rui’ is the number of petals. There are typically six to seven petals in ‘Yan Rui’ (Fig. 1), whereas other varieties of yellow-horn generally have five petals. Flowering begins in late April or early May and lasts for 20 d in Shandong Province. There are three to four carpels in the spherical fruit of ‘Yan Rui’. The transverse and longitudinal diameters are ∼4–6 and 4–8 cm, respectively. The seeds are spherical, black-brown (L* = 65, a* = −3, b* = 2), and shiny. The seed kernel oil content is ∼50% to 60%, and it can be used to produce biodiesel and edible oils.

Dissemination of the Cultivar

‘Yan Rui’ is highly adaptable and sun-loving, showing tolerance to cold and drought. This cultivar prefers fertile, well-drained soil that is slightly neutral to alkaline. It should not be planted in humid areas because excessive water can cause root rot. ‘Yan Rui’ thrives in regions with continental monsoon climates. Its natural distribution range in China spans from 28°34′N to 47°20′N and from 73°20′E to 120°25′E. The average annual temperature in these areas ranges from 3.3 to 15.6 °C, with a low of −36.4 °C and a high of 38.9 °C. Annual precipitation varies from 43 to 969 mm, and frost-free periods last between 120 and 233 d.

Grafting and budding can be used for propagation in spring and summer, respectively. The scions for grafting should be selected from branches with healthy terminal buds. After grafting, it is necessary to water and fertilize the plants over time. The transplantation of grafted plants is generally performed in winter or early spring. The suggested planting density is 2 m × 3 m, with 0.16 plants per square meter.

Fertilization is recommended two or three times per year, typically before flowering, after flowering, and during the period of rapid fruit growth. Watering should be performed after fertilization. Good drainage is important during the rainy season. Dense, overlapping, crossed, delicate, and diseased branches should be pruned to enhance tree growth. For old trees with poor growth and low yields, thinning, shrinking, truncation, and other cultivation techniques should be adopted to promote regeneration. In addition, attention should be paid to the control of pests and diseases, including root rot, sooty blotch, and wilt disease (Liu 2022).

Availability

A small number of samples of ‘Yan Rui’ are available commercially from Beijing Forestry University. Requests for cuttings for research purposes may be addressed to Dr. Yan Ao (e-mail: aoyan316@163.com).

References Cited

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  • Chen YX, Zhang ZS, Wang KX, Ou LJ, Ao Y. 2021. ‘Yan Xia’: A novel cultivar of Xanthoceras sorbifolium Bunge with ornamental value. HortScience. 56:511512. https://doi.org/10.21273/hortsci15481-20.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Chang ZJ, Li H, Bu LF. 2019. Quality comparison of cold pressed and hot pressed Xanthoceras sorbifolia Bunge seed oils. Zhongguo Youzhi. 4:121123. https://doi.org/DOI:CNKI:SUN:ZYZZ.0.2019-10-026.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Dong LL, Zhang WD, Xu WH. 2022. Underwater image enhancement via integrated RGB and LAB color models. Signal Process Image Commun. 104:13. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.image.2022.116684.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Lian C, Li YY, Li HY, Zhao YX, Zhou J, Wang SJ, Lian JR, Ao Y. 2022. ‘Yan Dong’: A new cultivar of Xanthoceras sorbifolium Bunge. HortScience. 57:10571058. https://doi.org/10.21273/hortsci16695-22.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Liu XR. 2022. Development and cultivation techniques of Xanthoceras sorbifolia in northern China. Contemporary Hort. 45(1):6364. https://doi.org/10.14051/j.cnki.xdyy.2022.01.023.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Liu YL, Huang ZD, Ao Y, Li W, Zhang ZX. 2017. Transcriptome analysis of yellow horn (Xanthoceras sorbifolia Bunge): A potential oil-rich seed tree for biodiesel in China. PLoS One. 8(9):e74441. https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0074441.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Shen Z, Duan J, Ma LY. 2017. Genetic diversity of Xanthoceras sorbifolium Bunge germplasm using morphological traits and microsatellite molecular markers. PLoS One. 12(6):E0177577. https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0177577.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Wang X, Zheng YQ, Su SC, Ao Y. 2019. Discovery and profiling of microRNAs at the critical period of sex differentiation in Xanthoceras sorbifolium Bunge. Forests. 10(12):1141. https://doi.org/10.3390/f10121141.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Xu DX, Yu HZ, Wu ZY, Hu CY, Wang Y, Yu Y, Lu GJ. 2010. Xanthoceras sorbifolium biology. Beijing Science Press, Beijing, China.

  • Yang F, Han SS, Nan Y, Chen XJ, Sun YB, Liu SC, Ma BP. 2021. Progress in research and development of Xanthoceras sorbifolia. China J Chinese Materia Medica. 46:43344343. https://doi.org/10.19540/j.cnki.cjcmm.20210524.603.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Zhao YX, Ma XT, Li HY, Chen YX, Wang SJ, Zhou J, Ao Y. 2022. ‘Yan Ya’: A new cultivar of Xanthoceras sorbifolium Bunge. HortScience. 57:326327. https://doi.org/10.21273/hortsci16324-21.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Fig. 1.

    Comparison of ‘Yan Rui’ and ‘Mengguan 1’. (A) The typical six to seven petals in ‘Yan Rui’ flowers. (B) ‘Mengguan 1’ usually has five petals.

  • Fig. 2.

    The nurseries and flowers of ‘Yan Rui’ in different regions of China: (A) in Chifeng City, Inner Mongolia; (B) in Chaoyang City, Liaoning Province; and (C) in Sanmenxia City, Henan Province.

  • Ao Y, Ma GQ. 2012. Research progress on the production of biodiesel from Aronia vulgaris seed oil. For Res Manage. 3:5156. https://doi.org/10.13466/j.cnki.lyzygl.2012.03.003.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Chen YX, Zhang ZS, Wang KX, Ou LJ, Ao Y. 2021. ‘Yan Xia’: A novel cultivar of Xanthoceras sorbifolium Bunge with ornamental value. HortScience. 56:511512. https://doi.org/10.21273/hortsci15481-20.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Chang ZJ, Li H, Bu LF. 2019. Quality comparison of cold pressed and hot pressed Xanthoceras sorbifolia Bunge seed oils. Zhongguo Youzhi. 4:121123. https://doi.org/DOI:CNKI:SUN:ZYZZ.0.2019-10-026.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Dong LL, Zhang WD, Xu WH. 2022. Underwater image enhancement via integrated RGB and LAB color models. Signal Process Image Commun. 104:13. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.image.2022.116684.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Lian C, Li YY, Li HY, Zhao YX, Zhou J, Wang SJ, Lian JR, Ao Y. 2022. ‘Yan Dong’: A new cultivar of Xanthoceras sorbifolium Bunge. HortScience. 57:10571058. https://doi.org/10.21273/hortsci16695-22.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Liu XR. 2022. Development and cultivation techniques of Xanthoceras sorbifolia in northern China. Contemporary Hort. 45(1):6364. https://doi.org/10.14051/j.cnki.xdyy.2022.01.023.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Liu YL, Huang ZD, Ao Y, Li W, Zhang ZX. 2017. Transcriptome analysis of yellow horn (Xanthoceras sorbifolia Bunge): A potential oil-rich seed tree for biodiesel in China. PLoS One. 8(9):e74441. https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0074441.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Shen Z, Duan J, Ma LY. 2017. Genetic diversity of Xanthoceras sorbifolium Bunge germplasm using morphological traits and microsatellite molecular markers. PLoS One. 12(6):E0177577. https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0177577.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Wang X, Zheng YQ, Su SC, Ao Y. 2019. Discovery and profiling of microRNAs at the critical period of sex differentiation in Xanthoceras sorbifolium Bunge. Forests. 10(12):1141. https://doi.org/10.3390/f10121141.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Xu DX, Yu HZ, Wu ZY, Hu CY, Wang Y, Yu Y, Lu GJ. 2010. Xanthoceras sorbifolium biology. Beijing Science Press, Beijing, China.

  • Yang F, Han SS, Nan Y, Chen XJ, Sun YB, Liu SC, Ma BP. 2021. Progress in research and development of Xanthoceras sorbifolia. China J Chinese Materia Medica. 46:43344343. https://doi.org/10.19540/j.cnki.cjcmm.20210524.603.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Zhao YX, Ma XT, Li HY, Chen YX, Wang SJ, Zhou J, Ao Y. 2022. ‘Yan Ya’: A new cultivar of Xanthoceras sorbifolium Bunge. HortScience. 57:326327. https://doi.org/10.21273/hortsci16324-21.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
Xuebin Wang State Key Laboratory of Efficient Production of Forest Resources, Beijing Forestry University, No. 35 Qinghua East Road, Haidian District, Beijing 100083, China; Key Laboratory for Silviculture and Conservation, Ministry of Education, Beijing Forestry University, No. 35 Qinghua East Road, Haidian District, Beijing 100083, China; and Beijing Laboratory of Urban and Rural Ecological Environment, No. 35 Qinghua East Road, Haidian District, Beijing 100083, China

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Yan Ao State Key Laboratory of Efficient Production of Forest Resources, Beijing Forestry University, No. 35 Qinghua East Road, Haidian District, Beijing 100083, China; Key Laboratory for Silviculture and Conservation, Ministry of Education, Beijing Forestry University, No. 35 Qinghua East Road, Haidian District, Beijing 100083, China; and Beijing Laboratory of Urban and Rural Ecological Environment, No. 35 Qinghua East Road, Haidian District, Beijing 100083, China

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Contributor Notes

This work was supported by the National Key R&D Program of China (2022YFD2200402).

Y.A. is the corresponding author. E-mail: aoyan316@163.com.

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  • Fig. 1.

    Comparison of ‘Yan Rui’ and ‘Mengguan 1’. (A) The typical six to seven petals in ‘Yan Rui’ flowers. (B) ‘Mengguan 1’ usually has five petals.

  • Fig. 2.

    The nurseries and flowers of ‘Yan Rui’ in different regions of China: (A) in Chifeng City, Inner Mongolia; (B) in Chaoyang City, Liaoning Province; and (C) in Sanmenxia City, Henan Province.

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