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  • Author or Editor: Richard Craig x
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The objective of this study was to identify geranium cultivars that exhibit differential reactions to floral inoculation with Botrytis cinerea Per. ex. Fr. Sixty-two genotypes, including both cultivars and breeding lines, were evaluated from several Pelargonium species. Resistant genotypes included the diploid Pelargonium peltatum (L.) L'Herit. cultivar King of Balcon and the diploid Pelargonium ×hortorum L.H. Bail. cultivar Ben Franklin, as well as the diploid Pelargonium peltatum accession 93-1-33 developed from an accession obtained from South Africa. Susceptible genotypes included the putative tetraploid Pelargonium peltatum cultivar Simone. Floral resistance was not correlated with foliar resistance. Diploid genotypes appeared to have greater resistance than tetraploid genotypes, and P. peltatum cultivars more resistance than P. ×hortorum cultivars. In addition, the association of petal number and resistance was investigated.

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Interspecific hybrids of exacum (Exacum L.) display variable responses to zinc nutrition. Our research compared two genotypes with contrasting zinc efficiency phenotypes in terms of root cation exchange capacity (CEC), whole plant 65Zn uptake, and the effects of Cu+2 and Mg+2 on 65Zn uptake and partitioning to shoot tissues. Results show that the zinc efficient and inefficient genotypes had significantly different root CEC [27.2 and 16.9 cmol(+)·kg-1 root dry weight (DW), respectively] and whole plant 65Zn uptake rates (0.048 and 0.026 μmol·h-1·g-1 DW, respectively). In equimolar concentrations to Zn+2, Cu+2 reduced Zn+2 uptake by approximately 50% in both genotypes while supplemental Mg+2 enhanced Zn+2 uptake. In addition, Mg+2 facilitated a larger proportion of absorbed 65Zn to the upper shoot of the efficient genotype. We conclude zinc is absorbed through a specific Zn+2/Cu+2 transporter and that zinc efficiency in exacum is based on a combination of apoplastic and symplastic traits. In addition, a secondary Mg+2 × Zn+2 interaction may contribute to the zinc efficiency phenotype.

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Foliar evaluations for Botrytis resistance of greenhouse grown plants were performed on 45 cultivars and control genotypes including diploid and tetraploid zonal (P. ×hortorum L.H. Bailey) and ivy (P. peltatum (L.) L'Hér. in Ait.) pelargoniums. Additional evaluations were performed on eight species within section Ciconium and on progeny of a susceptible by susceptible cross-pollination involving the cultivars Ben Franklin and Marilyn. Differential levels of resistance were observed. Among many genotypes that exhibited resistance, two genotypes had consistently high levels of Botrytis resistance over several experiments. These two genotypes were the diploid P. peltatum accession 86-23-1 and the tetraploid P. ×hortorum cultivar Fox. The diploid P. ×hortorum cultivar Ben Franklin was a reliable susceptible control in all experiments. Plants grown outdoors generally had higher levels of resistance than comparable greenhouse grown plants. Orthogonal contrasts indicated no trends in resistance when comparing diploid and tetraploid pelargoniums, or when comparing among ivy, zonal, and floribunda types. Genotypes patented or introduced since 1990 have greater susceptibility than older genotypes. Cross-pollinations among susceptible parents resulted in susceptible progeny, while self-pollinations of a resistant parent resulted in resistant progeny.

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We propose the name Exacum Styer Group for an interspecific population derived from several Sri Lankan Exacum taxa. Confirmation of hybrid status was determined by the appearance of either unique trait combinations or intermediate forms of traits originally represented by individual native taxa. Through 12 sexual generations, the proposed cultivar-group continues to exhibit these unique traits and now forms a cohesive fertile population.

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Abstract

In order to reduce the cost of fumigation and weed control in seedling nurseries of peach (Prunus persica (L.) Batsch.), a number of herbicides, used with and without Nemagon as a nematicide, were evaluated. While necessary for soil fumigation, the presence or absence of Nemagon did not effect weed control or seedling performance. The best and most economical herbicides were the spring application of simazine at 4.5 kg ai/ha or the fall application of diuron at 3.4 kg ai/ha.

Open Access

The postharvest quality of regal pelargoniums [Pelargonium × domesticum L. H. Bailey] is limited by petal abscission. Cultivars that have diverse postharvest longevities were selected to study ethylene sensitivity and endogenous ethylene production. Petals of both intact and detached inflorescences abscised in response to low dosages of exogenous ethylene (0.5 μl·liter-1 for 1 hour). Ethylene sensitivity varied among cultivars and increased with floret age. Silver thiosulfate reduced ethylene sensitivity and often extended floret longevity beyond that of the controls. A climacteric-like rise in endogenous ethylene production occurred in excised gynoecia (including the receptacle) as floret age increased from 1 to 12 days postanthesis. Ethylene production increased a few days earlier and achieved a higher maximum rate in `Parisienne' than in `Virginia'; `Parisienne' also abscised petals earlier. Relatively low levels of endogenous ethylene may regulate petal abscission, since inflorescences were very sensitive to exogenous ethylene, and increased endogenous ethylene production preceded petal abscission.

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Ethylene induces significant petal abscission in regal pelargonium (Pelargonium ×domesticum L.H. Bailey). Three genotypes, `Elegance Silver' and its progeny, 00-43-1 and 00-43-2, were developed with exceptional production and postproduction characteristics. These genotypes had significantly enhanced individual floret longevity and whole plant longevity, and displayed more than twice as many florets as commercial cultivars. Dose response analysis demonstrated that `Elegance Silver' has reduced ethylene responsiveness throughout floret development, shown by lower petal abscission than other cultivars over a range of ethylene concentrations. Floret longevity was strongly correlated with ethylene responsiveness as indicated by S50 (ethylene concentration for 50% petal abscission), but not with ethylene production. These results suggest that reduced ethylene responsiveness is an important determinant of enhanced postproduction performance in the superior genotypes of regal pelargonium.

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Abstract

Several factors which influence the detection of tobacco ringspot virus (TRSV), by the enzyme linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) in leaf extracts of geranium (Pelargonuim × hortorum Bailey), were examined. Crude leaf extracts could be used in ELISA to rapidly index geraniums for TRSV, providing measures were taken to minimize the effect of leaf substances which were inhibitory to the ELISA reaction. Optimal detection of TRSV (50 ng/ml) was obtained by extracting leaves in a 20-fold excess (w/v) of either 0.02M phosphate buffer, pH 7.4 containing 0.15M NaCl, 0.05% Tween 20, and 2% polyvinyl pyrrolidone or 0.1M phosphate buffer, pH 7.0 containing 4% polyethylene glycol. Clarification of the extract with polyethylene glycol and NaCl provided a 5-fold higher test sensitivity. ELISA proved useful for the detection of TRSV in both clonal and seedling geranium leaves as well as in geranium seed. The test was found to be more reliable than a bioassay for the detection of virus in the latent stage of infection.

Open Access

Biochemical and morphological components of 16 Pelargonium species and the P. ×hortorum interspecific complex were examined. Inflorescences and leaves of each species were analyzed for anacardic acids and the presence of glandular trichomes. Three species of the section Ciconium, P. acetosum, P. frutetorum, and P. inquinans, produced anacardic acids in association with glandular trichomes. only P. inquinans and P. frutetorum contained ω5- anacardic acids. An evolutionary model for the origin of anacardic acids and ω5- desaturation is proposed.

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