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Gregory E. Welbaum, Zhen-Xing Shen, Jonathan I. Watkinson, Chun-Li Wang, and Jerzy Nowak

and soil analysis. Muskmelon seeds (cv. Top Mark; Monsanto, St. Louis) were planted in black plastic transplant trays, [12 cells, 4 cm (length) × 3 cm (width) × 5.5 cm (depth), 60 cm 3 per cell], equally filled with soilless growing medium (Sunshine

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Shinsuke Agehara and Daniel I. Leskovar

stimulating post-stress growth of muskmelon seedlings. Materials and Methods Abscisic acid solutions. The formulation of ABA used in this study was VBC-30025 (Valent BioSciences, Libertyville, IL) containing 90% of (+)-cis, trans-ABA. A stock solution was

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Liangli Yu, Denys J. Charles, Amots Hetzroni, and James E. Simon

The volatiles of muskmelon (Cucumis melo L. reticulatis cv. Mission) were sampled by dichloromethane extraction and dynamic headspace methods and analyzed by gas chromatography (GC) and GC–mass spectroscopy (MS). A total of 34 constituents were identified, with esters contributing 8%–92% of the total volatiles. Butyl propionate, ethyl 3-methylpentanoate, hexadecanoic acid, methyl (methylthio)acetate, propyl butyrate, phenylpropyl alcohol, and vanillin, were recovered only by solvent extraction, while hexanal was only detected using dynamic headspace sampling. Methyl butyrate 35.2%, ethyl acetate 17.1%, butyl acetate 11.6%, ethyl propionate 8.3%, and 3-methylbutyl acetate 6.3% were the major constituents by solvent extraction sampling method. Butyl acetate 35.5%, 3-methylbutyl acetate 20.9%, ethyl acetate 7.3%, 2-butyl acetate 5.6%, and hexyl acetate 3.8% were the major constituents recovered by headspace sampling. Fruit tissue was also separated into five layers (exocarp, outer mesocarp, middle mesocarp, inner mesocarp, and seed cavity) and the volatile constituents differed significantly in content and composition by tissue.

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Dean E. Knavel

A short-internode mutant of `Mainstream' muskmelon (Cucumis melo L.), designated Main Dwarf, was crossed with 13 normal and six short-internode cultivars or breeding lines. Regardless of whether Main Dwarf was crossed with a normal or short-internode line, the F1 family was normal for internode length. From crosses of Main Dwarf with normal lines, the F2 families segregated in a 3 normal: 1 short-internode ratio and the families from backcrosses to Main Dwarf segregated 1 normal: 1 short internode. Crosses of Main Dwarf with short-internode lines produced F2 families that segregated in a 9 normal: 7 short internode ratio and families from backcrosses to Main Dwarf that segregated 1 normal: 1 short internode. The segregation data from crosses of Main Dwarf with normal lines indicate that Main Dwarf has a recessive gene that conditions short internode. The segregation data from crosses of Main Dwarf with short-internode lines (five conditioned by si-1 and one conditioned by si-2) indicate that the recessive gene for short internode in Main Dwarf is not allelic to si-1 or si-2. The gene for short internodes in Main Dwarf is designated si-3.

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H.Y. Hanna

A study was conducted in Summer 1996 and 1997 to determine the residual effects of planting nematode-resistant vs. susceptible tomato (Lycopersicon esculentum Mill.) cultivars and use of white vs. black polyethylene mulch on the growth and yield of a subsequent muskmelon (Cucumis melo L.) crop. Tomato cultivars were planted in early April and harvested in June and early July. Muskmelons were planted in late July on the same beds. Muskmelons, planted after the nematode-resistant tomato cultivar Celebrity, produced significantly greater marketable yield and more fruit per hectare in both years than did muskmelons planted after the nematode-susceptible tomato cultivar Heatwave. Plant dry weight of muskmelons was greater and the percentage of their galled roots was smaller when planted after nematode-resistant tomatoes than when planted after nematode-susceptible ones. Mulching tomatoes with black or white polyethylene had no significant effect on growth, yield, and root galling of subsequent muskmelon crops.

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Melkizedek O. Oluoch and Gregory E. Welbaum

Priming (controlled hydration followed by drying) has been shown to decrease seed storage life in some species The germinablity of primed (0.3 M KNO3, 6 d, 25°C) and unprimed muskmelon (Cucumis melo L., cv. PMR 45) seeds were compared after storage for 9 yrs at less than 20°C and 6% moisture content (MC) (dwt basis). Germination performance was compared at 30°C in water and polyethylene glycol solutions of -0.2, -0.4, -0.6, -0.8, and -1.0 MPa water potential or in water at 15, 20, and 25°C. Seeds were also germinated in field soils at 17, 19, and 21% (dwt. basis) MC in a greenhouse, Some seeds were subjected to controlled deterioration at 20% MC and 45°C for 72 hrs prior to testing. The germination percentage and rate of stored, primed seeds at 30°C and all water potentials was less than stored, unprimed seeds. At 30°C, stored, unprimed seeds germinated more rapidly and to higher percentages at -0.2 MPa than in water, while germination percentages and rates of stored, primed seeds were essentially the same. At 15, 24, and 25°C, stored, primed seeds outperformed unprimed seeds in all germination tests. In saturated soils at 21% MC, there was no germination of either stored, primed or unprimed seed. At 17% soil MC, stored, primed seeds germinated 73% compared to only 56% for unprimed seeds. The enhancement due to priming was retained after 9 yrs of storage at germination temperatures <30°C. At higher temperatures, the germination of unprimed seeds was superior to primed.

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Corrie Cotton and Gregory E. Welbaum

Maturity at harvest determines seed viability and vigor. However, separating seeds from different stages of development can be difficult using existing seed sorting technologies. New technology non-destructively sorts seeds based on their chlorophyll fluorescence (CF), so seeds with the same dry weight but with different physiological maturates can be separated. We determined whether chlorophyll content of muskmelon (Cucumis melo L. cv. Top Mark) seeds changes during development and whether those changes were related to viability and vigor. Seed viability and vigor were determined using an Association of Official Seed Analysts wet paper towel germination test. `Top Mark' seeds from nine stages of development were run through the SeedMaster Analyzer (Satake USA Inc., Houston, Texas), which calculated the chlorophyll content of each seed. The CF signal was fed into a computer to obtain a frequency histogram. Forty, 45, and 55 days after anthesis (DAA) seeds had germination percentages of 96%, 98%, and 100%, respectively, the highest in the study. Fifty-five DAA had greater seed vigor and viability and contained the lowest CF values; 207 on the 1000-value scale. The less-mature seeds contained higher chlorophyll content and had the lowest seed vigor and viability. Seed vigor and chlorophyll content were negatively correlated in this study. All seeds with high CF values had low vigor, but not all seeds with low CF values have high vigor. Seed aging during storage can reduce viability and vigor independent of chlorophyll content. Based on chlorophyll content, the SeedMaster Analyzer can non-destructively remove immature, low-vigor seeds that have the same physical characteristics and weight as more mature seeds. Chlorophyll fluorescence technology may allow the seed industry to further improve seed quality and maximize vigor.

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Bruce D. Whitaker and Gene E. Lester

Increases in phospholipase D [PLD (EC 3.1.4.4)] and lipoxygenase [LOX (EC 1.13.11.12)] activities are thought to play a critical role in senescence of mesocarp tissues in netted and nonnetted muskmelon (Cucumis melo L.) fruits. We have cloned and characterized two full-length cDNAs, CmPLDα1 and CmLOX1, encoding PLDα and LOX proteins in honeydew melon (C. melo Inodorus Group cv. Honey Brew). Relative levels of expression of the corresponding genes were determined by semi-quantitative RT-PCR in developing and mature fruit mesocarp tissues [20-60 d after pollination (DAP)], as well as in roots, leaves, and stems from 4-week-old and flowers from 6- to 7-week-old plants. The coding regions of CmPLDα1 and CmLOX1 cDNAs are, respectively, 2427 and 2634 nucleotides long, encoding proteins 808 and 877 amino acids in length. CmPLDα1 is very similar to PLDα genes from castor bean (Ricinis communis L.), cowpea (Vigna unguiculata L.), strawberry (Fragaria ×ananassa Duch.) and tomato (Lycopersicon esculentum Mill.) (77% nucleotide identity), and is the first PLD gene cloned from a cucurbit species. CmLOX1 has 94% nucleotide identity to a cucumber (Cucumis sativus L.) LOX gene expressed in roots and 80% identity to cucumber cotyledon lipid body LOX. In general, transcript of CmPLDα1 was much more abundant than that of CmLOX1, but relative levels of transcript in the various organs and tissues were similar for the two genes. Expression was highest in roots, flowers, and fruit mesocarp tissues. CmPLDα1 expression in fruit was essentially constitutive throughout development, although maximum levels occurred at 50 and 55 DAP, respectively, in middle and hypodermal mesocarp. CmLOX1 expression was generally higher in middle than in hypodermal mesocarp with maximum transcript levels occurring at 55 and 50 DAP, respectively. Overall, the patterns of expression of CmPLDα1 and CmLOX1 are consistent with a model in which their encoded enzymes act in tandem to promote or accelerate senescence in fruit mesocarp tissues.

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Kevin M. Crosby, John L. Jifon, and Daniel I. Leskovar

improved fruit quality, disease resistance, and productivity. Western shipper melon ( Cucumis melo L., Reticulatus Group) varieties are among some of the important Cucurbit crops grown in Texas for the summer fresh markets. Twelve muskmelon cultivars

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W. Patrick Wechter, Amnon Levi, Kai-Shu Ling, Chandrasekar Kousik, and Charles C. Block

) and muskmelon (also called cantaloupe or melon) ( Cucumis melo ). Records show that nearly two billion pounds of muskmelons were produced in the United States in 2008 with a market value of $371 million ( USDA, NASS, 2009 ). Pest and disease pressures