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  • Author or Editor: D.J. Norman x
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One cut-flower and 14 pot anthurium cultivars were screened for resistance to anthurium blight by spraying four isolates of Xanthomonas campestris pv. dieffenbachiae (McCulloch and Pirone) Dye onto leaf surfaces in replicated experiments. Varying degrees of resistance were observed among the 15 cultivars tested. The pot cultivars Julia and Gemini were the most resistant, while the cut-flower cultivar Hearts Desire was the most susceptible. Each cultivar displayed different degrees of resistance to individual isolates of the pathogen. The results of this research permit the selection of clones with greater resistance for use in breeding and also create a baseline for comparing resistance of newly developed cultivars.

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Twenty commonly grown Dieffenbachia cultivars were tested for their resistance to diseases affecting production caused by the following bacterial and fungal pathogens: Xanthomonas campestris pv. dieffenbachiae (McCulloch and Pirone) Dye, Erwinia chrysanthemi Burk, Fusarium solani Sacc, and Myrothecium roridum Tode ex Fr. Two isolates of each pathogen were used to compare heterogenic pathogen populations to the relatively homogenetic asexually produced cultivars. Cultivars having horizontal resistance toward tested pathogens could then easily be identified. The cultivars Camille, Compacta, and Parachute showed the broadest horizontal resistance, with resistance toward three of the four pathogen groups tested. Disease resistance identified in this research permits the selection of plants to be used in breeding, and also creates a baseline to compare resistance of newly developed cultivars.

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Species and cultivars of Dieffenbachia Schott. (Araceae Juss.) have been important ornamental foliage plants for many decades. Their attractive foliar variegation, adaptability to interior environments, and ease of production are major reasons for their importance as ornamental foliage plants. Approximately 20 cultivars are commercially produced in Florida. Previously, most new cultivars were clones introduced from the wild or chance mutations of existing cultivars. Currently, cultivars are introduced into production from plant breeding programs (Henny 1995a, b; Henny and Chen, 2003; Henny et al., 1987). The hybrid Dieffenbachia `Sterling' was developed by the tropical foliage plant breeding program at the Mid-Florida Research and Education Center.

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A model that computes orchard foliage temperature distributions in a heated orchard is described. The energy balance for individual foliage elements is computed, considering thermal radiation from the environment, plus the radiative and convective effects of an array of orchard heaters. The model is used to analyze various heater configurations and densities, and to determine rates of fuel consumption required for frost protection. The results indicate that radiative heating of the foliage by the heaters is as important as convective heating of the air, even though only one-fifth of the fuel contributes to radiation emission. Further, results suggest several simple passive methods for increasing the efficiency of orchard heating.

Open Access

Twenty-two spathiphyllum cultivars were evaluated for resistance to Cylindrocladium root rot (CRR). Four isolates of the fungus Cylindrocladium spathiphylli Shoult., El-Gholl & Alf. were selected from two different locations each in Florida and Hawaii. Spores of isolates were applied as a soil drench in replicated experiments using a randomized complete block design. The most severe symptoms were those produced by C. spathiphylli isolates from Hawaii. None of the spathiphyllum cultivars tested were highly resistant to CRR although resistance among the cultivars was observed. The cultivars Chris and Textura were the most promising cultivars, having fairly uniform resistance to the four isolates of C. spathiphylli. The cultivars Cupido, Daniel, Frederik, Jetty, and Vanessa were moderately resistant when combined data from all tests were analyzed. Results from this research permit the selection of more resistant breeding lines and also creates a baseline against which resistance of newly developed cultivars can be compared.

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