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Stephanie Solt and Leonard Perry

In the wild, Trillium seeds are reported to take 2 years to germinate, producing the radicle the first year and the cotyledon the second year. The accepted treatment has been to stratify the seeds using a temperature sequence of 3 months cold–3 months warm–3 months cold–3 months warm. It also has been reported that Trillium seeds treated with GA3 will germinate with no temperature treatment. The objective of this experiment was to determine the effects and optimum concentration of GA3 on the seed of Trillium grandiflorum. Seeds were soaked for 12 h in concentrations of GA3 K-salts at 500, 1000, 2000, or 4000 ppm dissolved in distilled water with five replicate petri dishes of 20 seeds each (100 seeds per treatment) in a randomized complete-block design in a growth chamber (zero light). Results were analyzed using ANOVA.

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Keith Woeste, Douglas Shaw, Gale McGranahan, and Robert Bernatzky

We characterized a population of hybrids between English walnut and Northern California black walnut (Juglans regia X J. hindsii) and their backcrosses (BC) using both genomic markers and morphological traits. ANOVA and regression methods were used on three years' data to identify a subset of five variables that describe the morphological variability among backcross populations and their parents (R2 = 0.89). Genomic markers were identified using randomly amplified polymorphic DNA (RAPD). A subset of 60 markers specific to the donor species (J. hindsii) were scored in 50 backcrosses to estimate the percent recipient genome in each evaluated BC. The backcrosses were ranked using each method of evaluation; correlation between the ranks was 0.423 and highly significant. Each evaluation method has advantages but neither was able to reliably identify elite progeny.

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A. Plotto, A. N. Azarenko, M. R. McDaniel, and J.P. Mattheis

`Gala' apples were harvested at weekly intervals for 6 weeks, refrigerated at 0C, and evaluated by a consumer panel monthly over a 6 month period for overall liking, firmness, sweetness, tartness and flavor intensities. Firmness, titratable acidity and soluble solids concentration were also measured. Initial analysis of sensory data revealed multicollinearity for overall liking, sweetness, and flavor. The five descriptors explained 75 % of the dataset variation in the first two factors. An orthogonal rotation separated overall liking, flavor and sweetness, and firmness and tartness into two independent factors. The distribution of mean scores along these independent factors showed that panelists could perceive changes due to ripening and maturation. The multivariate factor analysis was better than univariate ANOVA at illustrating how apple maturity stages were apparent to untrained panelists. Firmness was the only instrumental variable correlated to firmness ratings in the sensory tests. None of the analytical measurements could explain overall liking.

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Debra Guenther and Frank Stonaker

The Specialty Crops Program at Colorado State University conducted research of hardneck garlic (Allium sativum ophioscorodon) production on certified organic land at the Horticulture Field Research Center northeast of Fort Collins, Colo., during the garlic growing seasons of 2002–03 and 2003–04. Winter mulches and irrigation treatments were studied during the first season. It was found that garlic that was covered by any type of winter mulch (grass hay, single or double layers of floating row cover) resulted in better yields (higher average bulb weight) than garlic which was not covered at all (ANOVA, F = 2.93, P = 0.034). Yields from sprinkler and furrow irrigation were essentially the same; however, furrow irrigation used nearly 30% more water. Too little water was applied to the drip-irrigated treatment and yield suffered. Our findings suggest that yields are negatively impacted when less than 12 inches of combined precipitation and irrigation are received. During the second season, clove planting spacings of 3, 4.5, and 6 inches, and flame weeding and scape removal effects on yields were studied. The bulbs that grew at a 6-inch spacing were significantly larger than those grown at 3 and 4.5 inches (ANOVA, F = 46.5, P < 0.001). Flame weeding had no significant effects on yields (t-test, P = 0.6) and may be more economical compared to hand weeding depending on fuel costs. Removing the scapes did result in slightly higher bulb weights (t-test, P = 0.06). Removing scapes takes extra labor and may not be worth the time for only slightly higher bulb weights; however, selling the edible scapes may offset the cost and generate extra income.

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Tae-Ho Han, Herman J. van Eck, Marjo J. De Jeu, and Evert Jacobsen

An F1 population, derived from an intraspecific cross between two Alstroemeria aurea accessions, was used to map quantitative trait loci (QTL) involved in ornamental and morphological characteristics. One QTL for leaf length was mapped on linkage group three of both parents near marker E+ACCT/M+CGCA-I165 explaining 20% and 14.8% phenotypic variation. Two putative QTL were detected on leaf width on A002-3 and A002-6. One QTL and three putative QTL, involved in the leaf length/width ratio were identified accounting for 46.7% of the phenotypic variance in total. Significant interaction was observed between two QTL, S+AC/M+ACT-I162 and S+AC/M+AGA-I465 in a two-way analysis of variance (ANOVA). For the main color of the flower one QTL and putative QTL accounted for up to 60% of phenotypic variance suggesting simple genetic control of flower color. A two-way ANOVA of these QTL suggested an epistatic interaction. A QTL was detected for color of the inner side of outer lateral tepal with 26.5% of the phenotypic variance explained. This QTL was also associated with main color of the flower just below the 95% threshold value. Two QTL were detected with the Kruskal-Wallis test for the tip color of inner lateral tepal near QTL for other flower color traits. Consequently flower color traits were significantly correlated. A QTL and a putative QTL for the flower size was mapped near marker E+ACCG/M+CGCT-I193 and E+ACCG/M+CGCG-197, respectively. One putative QTL was detected for the stripe width of the inner lateral tepal.

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Ann Marie Connor, James J. Luby, and Cindy B.S. Tong

Variation in antioxidant activity (AA), total phenolic content (TPH), and total anthocyanin content (ACY) was examined in 1998 and 1999 in fruit of 52 (49 blue-fruited and 3 pink-fruited) genotypes from a blueberry breeding population. The species ancestry included Vaccinium corymbosum L. (northern highbush blueberry), V. angustifolium Ait. (lowbush blueberry), V. constablaei Gray (mountain highbush blueberry), V. ashei Reade (rabbiteye blueberry), and V. myrtilloides Michx. (lowbush blueberry). Using a methyl linoleate oxidation assay (MeLO) on acidified methanolic extracts of the berries, a 5-fold variation was found in AA in 1998 and a 3-fold variation in 1999 among the blue-fruited genotypes. Analyses of variance (ANOVA) revealed variation among genotypes (P < 0.0001) in single and combined years, regardless of inclusion of pink-fruited selections and adjustment for berry size. While mean AA of all genotypes did not change between the 2 years, ranking of some genotypes for AA changed significantly between 1998 and 1999. Of the 10 genotypes that demonstrated the highest AA in 1998, four were among the 10 genotypes that demonstrated highest AA in 1999. Similarly, of the 15 genotypes with the highest AA, 10 were the same both years. As with AA, mean TPH of all genotypes did not change between years and ANOVA demonstrated genotypic variation regardless of adjustment for berry size/weight or exclusion of pink-fruited selections. Changes in genotype rank occurred between years. The difference in TPH between lowest- and highest-ranking blue-fruited genotypes was ≈2.6-fold in both 1998 and 1999. Seven of the 10 highest-ranking genotypes were the same both years and TPH correlated with AA (r = 0.92, P < 0.01) on a genotype mean basis for combined years. ACY correlated less well with AA (r = 0.73, P < 0.01 for combined years). When genotypes were categorized into six groups according to species ancestry, V. myrtilloides and V. constablaei × V. ashei crosses ranked highest and second highest, respectively, for AA in both years. The groups comprised of V. corymbosum genotypes, V. angustifolium genotypes, and those with both V. corymbosum and V. angustifolium in their lineage were indistinguishable from each other. Samples from some of the genotypes were analyzed for oxygen radical absorbance capacity and ferric-reducing antioxidant power, and these aqueous-based antioxidant assays correlated well with the lipid emulsion-based MeLO (all r ≥ 0.90, P < 0.01). The three antioxidant assays may be equally useful for screening in a blueberry breeding program and the choice of assay may depend on the goal of the program and the resources available.

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Stephen B. Gaul, Eric D. Nelson, and Michael R. Evans

Rooted cuttings of 22 different Euphorbia pulcherrima Willd. ex Klotzsch cultivars were grown in root substrate inoculated with 0, 5000,15,000, and 30,000 oospores of Pyuthium ultimum Trow per 10-cm containers. The root substrate was a mixture of 50% peat, 30% perlite, and 20% soil, adjusted to a pH 5.5. Plants were grown in a greenhouse with a temperature range of 15-32 °C, and were fertilized daily with 200 ppm N (Excel 15-5-15, Scotts Co. Marietta, Ga). After 8 weeks, roots were rated for disease incidence and root fresh and dry weights were determined. The data were analyzed using ANOVA with six blocks in a 22 × 4 factorial design, linear regression, and cluster analysis. Significant differences among the responses of the cultivars were found. The slopes of the regression equations, using the log10 of the inoculum level for the X axis, were more positive for disease incidence and more negative for fresh and dry root weights in the more susceptble cultivars. The cultivars were separated, by the cluster analysis, into three groups, less susceptible, moderately susceptible, and highly susceptible. Cultivars Marblestar and Galaxy Red were representative of less susceptible, `Pepride' and `Jolly Red' were representative of moderately susceptible, and `Snowcap' and `Success' were representative of highly susceptible cultivars.

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Kathleen Delate

Organic farming has increased to a $4.2 billion industry in the U.S. and continues to expand ≈20% annually. In Iowa alone, organic acreage for all crops has increased from 13,000 in 1995 to 120,000 in 1998. Organic farmers have requested an unbiased analysis of natural soil amendments/fertilizers and compost products on the market for certified organic vegetable and herb production. In our first-year trials at the ISU Muscatine Island Research Farm in 1998, a total of 1,120 `Hungarian wax' pepper plants were transplanted into rows at 31 × 61-cm spacing. Four replications of seven fertilization treatments were planted within the field. The goal of the fertilization program was to obtain equivalent nitrogen and calcium rates in the organic and conventional systems. Leaf height was not significantly different in plants fertilized with organic compost (poultry litter-based) at 50 and 100 kg/ha N compared with conventional fertilizers (at 100 kg/ha N). All organic and conventional treatments had greater biomass than the organic and conventional controls (no fertilizer), respectively (ANOVA, P = 0.05). First harvest fresh weights were greater in the organic treatments, with the greatest number of peppers and greatest fresh weight in the compost plus Bio-Cal® (a liming industry by-product) treatment. Total pepper fresh weight over the five harvest periods was not significantly different among treatments, demonstrating to organic farmers that comparable yields can be obtained in systems employing alternatives to synthetic nitrogen fertilizer.

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Rebecca Grumet, Mary Barczak, Chris Tabaka, and Robert Duvall

A simple, aboveground method to study cucumber (Cucumis sativus L.) root growth was developed using a subsurface herbicide banding technique. Those plants with roots that grow deeper or faster reach the herbicide sooner and exhibit herbicide injury symptoms sooner. Greenhouse pot trials showed that 0.25 or 0.50 kg simazine/ha could be used to produce distinctive symptoms; time to symptom expression increased with the depth of the band from the soil surface. Root washing experiments verified that root length was associated with response time. In field trials, response time and severity of symptoms varied with herbicide concentration, depth, and distance from the seed row, thereby providing an indication of where the roots were in the soil. About 100 diverse cucumber genotypes were tested for differences in root growth rate in the greenhouse and in the field. Time to symptom expression was normally distributed among the genotypes; analysis of variance (ANOVA) indicated significant genotypic differences. This system can be used for cultural or physiological studies, or nondestructively for selection and breeding purposes. If the herbicide is placed sufficiently deep to prevent damage to the cotyledons, the plants are capable of flowering and producing fruit. Chemical name used: 6-chloro-N, N′-diethyl-1,3,5-triazine-2,4-diamine (simazine).

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John D. Downes

Animal waste disposal from large operations is an increasing problem, and its value as a fertilizer needs to be determined. Strip tests often are unreplicated creating problems in analysis. In an unreplicated Georgia farm test involving a three manure (0, 1, 2 loads/acre) × 3 N (0, 70, 90 lb/acre) factorial on corn yield from the control plot was not included, making n = 8, and precluding the usual ANOVA and means comparisons. Partial budget analysis is compared to regression analysis and economic evaluation at varying input costs and corn prices. Best estimates were obtained by finding the N equivalent of manure [(56.4 lb N)/load] and regressing yield on sum of N (Nf + Nm), which estimated Y = –14.0 + 1.1724N – 0.00324NN, RR = .982, F = 136.38, P > F =.000, sye = 3.0 bushel/acre, from which Nmax = 181, Ymax = 92.1 bushel/acre. Nopt varied from 139 to 172 bushel/acre with cost N varying from $0.14/lb (manure cost) to $0.40/lb, and corn prices from $1.50 to $2.50/bushel. Manure thus valued at 16.92 per load when costing $8.00, assuming 56.4 lbs/load N. Major point was estimation N equivalent of manure from yield effects and then regression yield on N. Equation easily converted to one in M.