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Thomas G. Ranney

Leaf gas exchange and chlorophyll fluorescence measurements were used as indices for evaluating heat tolerance among five species of birch: paper (Betula papyrifera), European (B. pendula), Japanese (B. platyphylla var. japonica `Whitespire'), Himalayan (B. jacquemontii), and river (B. nigra). Measurements were conducted on individual leaves at temperatures ranging from 25C to 40C. Carbon exchange rates (CER) were depressed for all species at 40C. However, there was considerable variation in both absolute and relative (percent of maximum) CER among species at 40C; river birch maintained the highest absolute and relative CER while CER of paper birch was reduced the most. Although stomatal conductance of paper birch decreased at higher temperatures, internal leaf CO2 increased indicating that reduced stomatal conductance was not responsible for decreased CER. Stomatal conductance of river birch increased at higher temperatures which provided for enhanced uptake of CO2 and greater evaporative cooling. Variable chlorophyll fluorescence decreased similarly for both species with increasing temperatures. Measurements of dark respiration rates over the range of 25C to 40C suggested that the primary factor influencing variation in CER at higher temperatures was due to variation in respiration rates at higher temperatures.

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D.M. Quinn, B.K. Behe, J.R. Kessler, and J.S. Bannon

In the summer of 1995 and 1996, 245 and 400 annual plant cultivars were evaluated for heat tolerance and landscape performance. Nine transplants of each cultivar were installed in raised beds amended with controlled-release fertilizer as per soil analysis recommendations, under full-sun and overhead irrigation, at the E.V. Smith Research Center in Shorter, Ala. (lat. 32° 30′ N, long. 85° 40′ W). No mainte-nance, with the exception of one midseason pruning of petunia, was performed on any of the cultivars. Catharanthus roseus 'Blush Cooler' was the best performer in 1995 with a mean rating of 4.1 (of 5.0). Salvia farinacea `Victoria Blue' and Petunia ×milliflora `Fantasy Pink' performed well, with a mean rating of 3.5. In 1996, the cultivar with the highest mean rating was Gomphrena globosa `Lavender Lady' (4.1). Second highest was G. globosa `Strawberry Fields' (4.0). Other cultivars that performed well in 1996 and had high mean ratings were Verbena × speciosa `Imagination' (3.6) and Melampodium paludosium `Derby' and `Medallion' (3.5 and 3.5).

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Laura G. Jull, Thomas G. Ranney, and Frank A. Blazich

Seedlings of six provenances of Atlantic white cedar [Chamaecyparis thyoides (L.) B.S.P.] (Escambia Co., Ala., Santa Rosa Co., Fla., Wayne Co., N.C., Burlington Co., N.J., New London Co., Conn., and Barnstable Co., Mass.) were grown in controlled-environment chambers for 12 weeks under 16-hour photoperiods with 16-hour days/8-hour nights of 22/18 °C, 26/22 °C, 30/26 °C, 34/30 °C or 38/34 °C. Considerable variation in height, foliage color, and overall plant size was observed among plants from the various provenances. Seedlings from the two most northern provenances (Massachusetts and Connecticut) were most heat sensitive as indicated by decreasing growth rates at temperature regimes >22/18 °C. In contrast, plants from New Jersey and the three southern provenances (North Carolina, Florida, and Alabama) exhibited greater heat tolerance as indicated by steady or increasing growth rates and greater top and root dry weights as temperature regimes increased above 22/18 °C. Growth rates of seedlings from the four aforementioned provenances decreased rapidly at temperature regimes >30/26 °C suggesting low species tolerance to high temperatures. There were no significant differences in seedling dry matter production among provenances when temperature regimes were ≥34/30 °C. Net shoot photosynthesis and dark respiration of plants did not vary by provenance; however, net photosynthesis was temperature sensitive and decreased at temperature regimes >26/22 °C. Foliar respiration rates increased as temperature increased from 22/18 °C to 26/22 °C, but then remained relatively constant or decreased at higher temperature regimes. Plants at temperatures ≥34/30 °C exhibited severe stunting, chlorosis, and necrosis on branch tips. However, tissue concentrations of N, P, K, Ca, Mg, Fe, Zn, Cu, and Mn generally increased with temperature regimes >30/26 °C indicating that mineral nutrient concentration was not a limiting factor at high temperatures.

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M.D. Richardson

Bermudagrass (Cynodon spp.) turf is often overseeded with a cool-season species such as perennial ryegrass (Lolium perenne L.) to provide an improved winter surface for activities such as golf or athletic events. Perennial ryegrass can become a persistent weed in overseeded turf due to the heat and disease tolerance of improved cultivars. Intermediate ryegrass is a relatively new turfgrass that is a hybrid between perennial and annual ryegrass (L. multiflorum Lam.). Very little information is available on intermediate ryegrass as an overseeding turf. Greenhouse, field, and growth chamber studies were designed to compare two cultivars of intermediate ryegrass (`Transist' and `Froghair') with three cultivars of perennial ryegrass (`Jiffie', `Racer', and `Calypso II') and two cultivars of annual ryegrass (`Gulf' and `TAM-90'). In a greenhouse study, the perennial ryegrass cultivars had finer leaf texture (2.9-3.2 mm), shorter collar height (24.7-57.0 mm), and lower weight/tiller (29-39 mg) than the intermediate and annual cultivars. In the field studies, the intermediate cultivar Transist exhibited improved turfgrass quality (6.1-7.1) over the annual cultivars (4.5-5.8) and the other intermediate cultivar Froghair (5.4-5.7). However, neither of the intermediate cultivars had quality equal to the perennial ryegrass cultivars (7.0-7.9). The perennial ryegrass cultivars exhibited slow transition back to the bermudagrass compared to the annual and intermediate ryegrass cultivars. In the growth chamber study, the annual and intermediate cultivars all showed increased high-temperature stress under increasing temperatures compared to the perennial cultivars, which did not show stress until air temperature exceeded 40 °C. Collectively, these studies indicate that the intermediate ryegrass cultivar Transist may have promise as an overseeding turfgrass due to its improved quality compared to annual types and a lack of heat tolerance relative to perennial cultivars, but with transition qualities similar to perennial ryegrass.

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Abbas Lafta, Thomas Turini, German V. Sandoya, and Beiquan Mou

, which may negatively impact the agricultural production and food availability ( Karl and Trenberth, 2003 ; Wurr et al., 1996 ). Heat tolerance is the ability of plants to grow and perform well under high temperature stress. Development of new crop

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Karen E. Burr, Stephen J. Wallner, and Richard W. Tinus

Greenhouse-cultured, container-grown seedlings of interior Douglas fir [Pseudotsuga menziesii var. glauca (Beissn.) France], Engelmann spruce [Picea engelmannii (Parry) Engelm.], and ponderosa pine (Pinus ponderosa var. scopulorum Engelm.) were acclimated and deacclimated to cold in growth chambers over 19 weeks. Heat tolerance and cold hardiness of needles, and bud dormancy, were measured weekly. Heat tolerance of Douglas fir and Engelmann spruce needles increased with development through the first complete annual cycle: new needles on actively growing plants; mature needles, not cold-hardy, on dormant plants; cold-hardy needles on dormant and quiescent plants; and mature, needles, not cold-hardy, on actively growing plants. Heat tolerance of ponderosa pine needles differed in two respects. New needles had an intermediate tolerance level to heat, and fully cold-hardy needles were the least tolerant. Thus, the physiological changes that conferred cold hardiness were not associated with greater heat tolerance in all the conifers tested. In none of these species did the timing of changes in heat tolerance coincide consistently with changes in cold hardiness or bud dormancy.

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Katy M. Rainey and Phillip D. Griffiths

The genetic basis for heat tolerance during reproductive development in snap bean was investigated in a heat-tolerant × heat-sensitive common bean cross. Parental, F1, F2, and backcross generations of a cross between the heat-tolerant snap bean breeding line `Cornell 503' and the heat-sensitive wax bean cultivar Majestic were grown in a high-temperature controlled environment (32 °C day/28 °C night), initiated prior to anthesis and continued through plant senescence. During flowering, individual plants of all generations were visually rated and scored for extent of abscission of reproductive organs. The distribution of abscission scores in segregating generations (F2 and backcrosses) indicated that a high rate of abscission in response to heat stress was controlled by a single recessive gene from `Majestic'. Abscission of reproductive organs is the primary determinant of yield under heat stress in many annual grain legumes; this is the first known report of single gene control of this reaction in common bean or similar legumes. Generation means analysis indicated that genetic variation among generations for pod number under heat stress was best explained by a six-parameter model that includes nonallelic interaction terms, perhaps the result of the hypothetical abscission gene interacting with other genes for pod number in the populations. A simple additive/dominance model accounted for genetic variance for seeds per pod. Dominance [h] and epistatic dominance × dominance [l] genetic parameters for yield components under high temperatures were the largest in magnitude. Results suggest `Cornell 503' can improve heat tolerance in sensitive cultivars, and heat tolerance in common bean may be influenced by major genes.

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Kerry M. Strope and Mark S. Strefeler

Four heat-tolerant (`Celebration Cherry Red', `Celebration Rose', `Lasting Impressions Shadow', and `Paradise Moorea') and three non-heat-tolerant (`Lasting Impressions Twilight', `Danziger Blues', and `Pure Beauty Prepona') cultivars were identified using a Weighted Base Selection Index. These cultivars were used as parents in a full diallel crossing block with reciprocals and selfs. Progeny from five parents (25 crosses) were evaluated for heat tolerance. Four floral (fl ower number, flower diameter, flower bud number, and floral dry weight) and five vegetative characteristics (visual rating, leaf size rating, vegetative dry weight, branch number, and node number) were evaluated with emphasis placed on continued flowering under long-term heat stress. In addition, progeny from all seven parents (49 crosses) were evaluated for inheritance of adaxial leaf color, abaxial leaf color, vein color, and flower color. Significant differences were found in each data category (P < 0.001) with the exception of node number, which was not significant. Flower number varied from 0 to 2, flower diameter varied from 0 to 41 mm, floral dry weight varied from 14 to 105 mg, bud number varied from 0 to 12, branch number varied from 5 to 15, and vegetative dry weight varied from 220 to 607 mg. General and specific combining abilities of the parents were evaluated as was heritability. It was found that the four heat-tolerant cultivars had higher general combining abilities. Heat tolerance has low heritability and is controlled by many genes.

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Tim D. Davis, Daksha Sankhla, and Narendra Sankhla

Carnation cultivars `German Red' and `Chabaud' were planted in the field in Dallas, Texas, on 26 May 1994. During the subsequent 3 months, the average daily high temperature was 33C, and the average daily low temperature was 22C. `German Red' plants increased in height and diameter several-fold during this period. In contrast, `Chabaud' did not increase in height or diameter. `German Red' plants began flowering in early August, and by 2 Sept., all of the plants were blooming. None of the `Chabaud' plants produced flowers, and only 50% of the original plants were still alive on 2 Sept. Mean shoot dry weight per plant on 2 Sept. was 71.6 g for `German Red' and only 2.4 g for `Chabaud'. These results document the extraordinary heat tolerance of `German Red' carnation. This plant not only survived the summer, but also grew and began blooming during the hottest time of the year.

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Katsumi Suzuki, Tadashi Tsukaguchi, Hiroyuki Takeda, and Yoshinobu Egawa

Pod yield of `Kentucky Wonder' green bean (Phaseolus vulgaris L.) decreased at high temperatures due to a reduction of pod set. A highly positive correlation was observed between pod set and pollen stainability in flowers that were affected by heat stress about 10 days before anthesis. Pollen stainability was decreased by heat stress applied 8 to 11 days before flowering under controlled environment conditions. When mean air temperature during this period exceeded 28 °C, pollen stainability decreased under field conditions. Low pollen stainability indicated sensitivity to high temperatures about 10 days before flowering. A heat-tolerant cultivar showed higher pollen stainability than did heat-sensitive cultivars under high temperatures. These results demonstrated that heat tolerance at an early reproductive stage could be evaluated by analyzing pollen stainability using flowers developed under high temperatures.