The rate of absorption of distilled water by individual ‘Forever Yours’ cut roses was measured in continuous light (720 ft-c) and total darkness. Maximum water uptake in light (1.5 to 3.5 ml/hour) was found 24 to 48 hour (hr) after harvest followed by a gradual decline, while the lower (0.18 to 0.47 ml/hour) uptake in the dark persisted during the 120 hour study. Alternating 12 hour light and dark periods for 120 hours in a second study showed absorption rates change rapidly from light to dark or dark to light exposure. Statistical correlations were made among cut rose morphological parts and the rate of water uptake. Leaf area was found to be the factor most closely associated with water uptake in both light and dark. Anatomical studies revealed overall tissue degradation in rose stems kept in distilled water 5 days.
Received January 31, 1973. Michigan Agricultural Experiment Station Journal Article No. 6235.
The technical assistance by V. E. Shull, E. R. Emino, G. J. Gogue, and R. L. Hatch and financial assistance by Roses Inc. are gratefully acknowledged.