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  • Author or Editor: Dennis P. Stimart x
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Narrow-sense heritabilities and genetic correlations of ornamental quality traits of Antirrhinum majus (snapdragon) were evaluated with special reference to cut flower postharvest longevity (PHL). Inbreds P1 (16 days PHL) and P2 (3 days PHL) were hybridized to produce an F1 (P1 × P2) that was self-pollinated to produce an F2 population. The F2 were self-pollinated to produce F3 families and advanced through single-seed descent by self-pollination to the F5 generation. P1, P2, F1, F3, F4, and F5 were evaluated for ornamental quality traits. Quality traits were found to be quantitative and normally distributed. Narrow-sense heritability (h2) estimates were high and consistent across generations examined; PHL h2 ranged from 0.79 to 0.81 ± 0.06. Phenotypic and genotypic correlations revealed underlying physiological and pleiotropic interactions relevant to breeding programs aimed at simultaneous improvement of ornamental quality traits. PHL is inversely related to cut flower strength and days to flower, -0.44 ± 0.04 and -0.43 ± 0.44. Buds at discard is positively correlated to cut flower and plant diameter, cut flower weight and days to flower, 0.77 ± 0.05, 0.58 ± 0.06, 0.71 ± 0.06, and 0.77 ± 0.07, respectively. Gain from selection for quality traits of interest can be rapid.

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Stomatal density during plant development and inheritance of the trait were investigated with the goal of utilizing stomatal density as a correlated trait to cutflower postharvest longevity in Antirrhinum majus L. Inbred P1 (stomatal index = 0.2) was hybridized to inbred P2 (stomatal index = 0.3) to produce F1 (P1 × P2), which was backcrossed to each parent producing BCP1 (F1 × P1) and BCP2 (F1 × P2). P1, P2, F1, BCP1, and BCP2 were used to examine changes in stomatal density with plant development and early generation inheritance. An F2 (F1 self-pollinated), and F3, F4, and F5 families, derived by self-pollination and single seed descent, were used to obtain information on advanced generation inheritance. Stomatal density was stable over time and with development of leaves at individual nodes after seedlings reached two weeks of age. Therefore, stomatal density can be evaluated after two weeks of plant development from a leaf at any node. Stomatal density is quantitatively inherited with narrow sense heritabilities of h2 F2:F3 = 0.47 to 0.49, h2 F3:F4 = 0.37 ± 0.06 to 0.60 ± 0.07, and h2 F4:F5 = 0.47 ± 0.07 to 0.50 ± 0.07.

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Cotyledons from developing 6- to 8-week-old embryos of Liatris spicata (L.) Willd. (blazing star) were cultured on Murashige and Skoog medium containing 0, 0.4, 4.4, or 44.4 μm BA or 0, 0.2, 2.2, or 22.2 μm TDZ to induce adventitious shoot formation. The highest percentage of cotyledons forming the most shoots was on medium containing 2.2 μm TDZ. Cotyledon-derived callus cultured on medium containing 4.4 μm BA formed ≈16 times more adventitious shoots than on 2.2 μm TDZ. Adventitious shoots derived from cotyledons or callus produced roots when placed on MS medium containing 5.0 μm IBA. Regenerated plants that flowered in the field appeared homogeneous. Chemical names used: N6-benzyladenine (BA), thidiazuron (TDZ), indole-3-butyric acid (IBA).

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Three percent hydrogen peroxide (H2O2) was diluted with deionized water (dH2O) to 0.75%, 0.38%, 0.19%, 0.09%, or 0.05% H2O2 plus 1.5% sucrose for use in evaluation of Antirrhinum majus L. (snapdragon) cut flowers. Other vase solutions used as controls included; 300 ppm 8-hydroxyquinoline citrate (8-HQC) plus 1.5% sucrose; dH2O plus 1.5% sucrose; and dH2O. A completely random design with 7 replicationss was used. Flowering stems of three commercial inbreds and one F1 hybrid of snapdragon were cut when the first five basal florets opened. Each stem was placed in an individual glass bottle containing one of the eight different treatments. Flowering stems were discarded when 50% of the open florets wilted, turned brown, or dried. Postharvest life was determined as the number of days from stem cutting to discard. Addition of H2O2 to vase solutions at rates of 0.19 and 0.09% resulted in postharvest life not different from that obtained with 8-HQC plus sucrose. Hydrogen peroxide plus sucrose extended postharvest life of snapdragon cut flowers 6 to 8 days over dH2O and 5 to 7 days over dH2O plus 1.5% sucrose.

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One-centimeter hypocotyl explants from 2-week-old Antirrhinum majus L. (snapdragon) seedlings germinated and grown in vitro under 12-h cool-white fluorescent light and 12 h dark or 24 h dark were placed on Murashige and Skoog (MS) medium containing 0, 0.44, 2.22, 4.44, 8.88, or 44.4 μM N6-benzyladenine (BA). Cultures were maintained under the light/dark regime at 25°C. After 2 weeks, adventitious shoots were counted. A shoot was considered adventitious and counted if a stem and leaf developed. Shoots developed along the entire length of the hypocotyl sections. Mean shoot production per hypocotyl explant ranged from 2.4 to 6.1 shoots when seedlings were germinated and grown in 24 h darkness and 2.2 to 10.9 shoots when started in the light/dark regime. Highest shoot counts were attained /from hypocotyl explants when seedlings were germinated and grown under the light/dark regime for 2 weeks and transferred to 2.22, 4.44, or 8.88 μM BA. Shoot development appeared normal at the 2.22 and 4.44 μM level, while at 8.88 μM BA, development was slightly abnormal along with slightly more callus production.

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Cut flowers of a short(S) lived (3 days) inbred, a long(L) lived (15 days) inbred and their hybrid (F1, 7.3 days) of Antirrhinum majus L. were evaluated for water loss when held in deionized water under continuous fluorescent light at 25°C. Flowering stems for water loss evaluation were harvested when the basal five to six florets expanded. Cut stems were placed in narrowed-necked bottles with the open area between the stem and bottle sealed with Parafilm. Stem weight and water weight in the bottle were taken every 24 h. Water loss evaluation was continued until 50% of the open florets on the flowering stem wilted or turned brown. Overall, water loss from all accessions was highest 24 h postharvest, declined rapidly between 24 to 96 h, and remained unchanged throughout the remainder of postharvest life. Between 24 to 96 h, the slope of the line for water loss was greatest for L, least for S, and intermediate for the F1. It appears that longest postharvest life of A. majus is associated with the most rapid decline of water loss immediately postharvest to a level, which remains constant.

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Flowering stems from three commercial inbreds and their F1 hybrids of Antirrhinum majus L. were cut when the first eight basal florets opened. Tops of the stems were removed above the eighth floret and florets were removed leaving two, four, six, or eight open florets on a stem. A completely random design with 10 replications was used. Flowering stems were placed in plastic storage containers 35 × 23 × 14 cm (L × W × H) with 2.5 L deionized water for postharvest evaluation. Evaluation took place under continuous cool-white fluorescent light (9 μmol·m–2·s–1) at 24°C Postharvest life was determined as the number of days from cutting to discard when 50% of the open florets on a flowering stem wilted, turned brown, or dried. Results showed postharvest life increased as the number of open florets on a stem decreased. Mean postharvest life increased as much as 4.7 days when only two florets remained on a stem. These results indicate a direct relationship between number of florets on a cut flower stem and postharvest life.

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The role of the number of adventitious roots of Malus domestics Borkh. `Gala' microcuttings in vitro on ex vitro root and shoot growth was investigated. Root initiation treatments consisted of IBA at 0, 0.15, 1.5, 15, and 150 μm in factorial combination with media at pH 5.5, 6.3, and 7.0. IBA concentrations significantly influenced final root count and shoot fresh and dry weights, but not plant height, leaf count, or root fresh and dry weights at 116 days. Between 0 and 0.15 μm IBA, final root counts were similar, but at 1.5, 15, and 150 μm IBA, root counts increased by 45%, 141%, and 159%, respectively, over the control. The pH levels did not affect observed characteristics significantly. There was no significant interaction between main effects. A significant positive linear relationship was found between initial and final root count. The results suggest a limited association between high initial adventitious root count and subsequent growth. Chemical name used: 1 H -indole-3-butyric acid (IBA).

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Efforts to improve postharvest longevity of fresh-cut flowers has only recently turned toward selection and breeding. Conventional methods to extend keeping longevity of cut flowers depend on use of chemical treatment placed in holding solutions. Postharvest longevity studies were initiated with Antirrhinum majus L. (snapdragon) to determine: if natural genetic variation existed for cut-flower longevity, the inheritance of the trait, heritability, and associated physiology. Evaluation of commercial inbreds held in deionized water revealed a range in cut-flower longevity from a couple of days to 2.5 weeks. The shortest- and longestlived inbreds were used as parents in crosses to study the aforementioned areas of interest. Information will be presented on inheritance of cut flower longevity based on populations evaluated from matings for generation means analysis and inbred backcross method. Also presented will be information on stomata, transpiration, carbohydrate, fresh-weight change, and forcing temperature relative to postharvest longevity.

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Stomatal density is being investigated as a highly correlated trait to postharvest longevity (PHL) and subsequently may be used for selection in early generations of breeding germplasm. To this end, leaf imprints were created from Antirrhinum majus L. (snapdragon) P1, P2, F1, BC1 (F1×P1), BC2 (F1×P2), F2, and F3 plants and evaluated for stomatal densities. Cut flowers of P1, P2, F1, BC1 (F1×P1), BC2 (F1×P2), and F3 were harvested after the first five flowers opened and evaluated for PHL. Additionally, cut flowers from these lines were evaluated for leaf surface area. Populations for evaluation were grown in the greenhouse in winter and spring 1999-2000 in a randomized complete-block design according to standard forcing procedures. Twenty-five cut flowering stems of each genotype were held in the laboratory in deionized water under continuous fluorescent lighting at 22 °C for PHL assessment. The end of PHL was defined as 50% of the flowers drying, browning, or wilting. Data will be presented on the correlation between stomatal density and PHL.

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