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The game-show format, used recurrently in an undergraduate-level, introductory plant propagation course, fostered a friendly, competitive incentive for students to master facts and concepts critical to understanding processes in plant physiology. Because student teams, rather than individuals, served as the contestants in each game, and because game points were never translated into grade points, participants and observers learned from and enjoyed the exercises without anxiety. Propagation-specific clues and questions were prepared for “Wheel of Fortune,” “Win, Lose, or Draw,” and other games. These were followed up at the end of each semester with several play-off rounds of a plant propagation variant of “Jeopardy!”, which served as an excellent means of course synthesis and review of key concepts. The format allowed for liberal use of humor as an effective pedagogical tool and resulted in the hands-on contributions of former students in construction of new game quizzes and puzzles for subsequent semesters.

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The only method for large scale production of pure hybrid seed in Zinnia elegans involves the use of male sterile individuals. The male sterile trait, however, is a three gene recessive which at best produces only 50% male sterile progeny from seed. Since no method of clonal propagation is available, seed-produced female lines require labor intensive field roguing to insure removal of all normal flowered individuals. Clonal micropropagation was investigated as a means of mass producing male steriles for use as female lines. Sterilization procedures were developed for seed and axillary bud explants. Shoot proliferation media containing various levels of BAP, 2ip, and kinetin were screened using in vitro germinated seedling explants of the inbred line `Orange Starlight'. Microshoots demonstrated a high rooting percentage after 2 weeks on basal medium without growth regulators. Plantlets were easily acclimated in 1 to 2 weeks in a high humidity environment. In vitro derived plants of identified male sterile plants were phenotypically evaluated as to their suitability for use in field production.

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The only method for large scale production of pure hybrid seed in Zinnia elegans involves the use of male sterile individuals. The male sterile trait, however, is a three gene recessive which at best produces only 50% male sterile progeny from seed. Since no method of clonal propagation is available, seed-produced female lines require labor intensive field roguing to insure removal of all normal flowered individuals. Clonal micropropagation was investigated as a means of mass producing male steriles for use as female lines. Sterilization procedures were developed for seed and axillary bud explants. Shoot proliferation media containing various levels of BAP, 2ip, and kinetin were screened using in vitro germinated seedling explants of the inbred line `Orange Starlight'. Microshoots demonstrated a high rooting percentage after 2 weeks on basal medium without growth regulators. Plantlets were easily acclimated in 1 to 2 weeks in a high humidity environment. In vitro derived plants of identified male sterile plants were phenotypically evaluated as to their suitability for use in field production.

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Abstract

Rooting of cuttings of 4 clones of Mugo pine (Pinus mugo var. mughus Zeneri) averaged 75% when collected in June and dipped in a solution of 0.6% indolebutyric acid (IBA) plus 0.5% benomyl in 95% ethyl alcohol. Cuttings collected in March and June rooted better than those of September or December. Clones varied in rootability.

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Use of a liquid media during micropropagation has promoted improved proliferation and rooting response in several species. In this experiment, a double phase system (a combination of liquid and agar solidified medium) was applied to three cultivars of miniature roses (Rosa chinensis var. minima) to determine the effects on shoot quality and subsequent ex-vitro rooting. Applications of liquid media to the surface of agar solidified media were made at 0, 2, and 4 weeks. Evaluation via computerized image analysis after eight weeks of proliferation revealed equal or greater values for shoot length, area and weighted density (equivalent to fresh weight) for cultures receiving overlay, regardless of timing, compared to the solid media control. Additionally, application of a liquid overlay improved rooting response by up to 20% over the control and resulted in a tendency for a greater number of roots of greater length and area than the treatment without liquid media overlay.

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