We examined two aspects of treating plants with a cytokinin-containing seaweed extract (SWE). In the first series of experiments, we tested the hypothesis that immature lima bean (Phaseolus lunatus L.) and tomato (Lycopersicon esculentum Mill.) plants provided with exogenous cytokinins could recover from defoliation by a generalist insect herbivore, Spodoptera exigua (Hübner), more rapidly than plants without cytokinin supplements. However, the SWE inhibited growth of lima beans at all levels of herbivore damage. The SWE neither inhibited nor stimulated growth of tomatoes following defoliation. Because SWE effects largely were neutral for tomato growth, we conducted a second series of experiments to test the hypothesis that SWE treatments alter the attractiveness of tomato foliage to S. exigua larvae. In these experiments, we determined consumption of, and preference for, SWE-treated tomato foliage by S. exigua larvae. Repeated root applications of SWE led to increased consumption and preference by S. exigua. Repeated foliar applications did not alter consumption or preference compared with controls. Spodoptera exigua larvae gained significantly more mass when feeding on SWE-treated foliage compared with controls. While these data indicate that plant responses to exogenous cytokinin-containing materials depend on taxa and application method, the practical uses of SWE appear limited given the negative effects on plant growth and increased attractiveness of treated foliage to herbivores.
With the intensification of horticultural research around the world, increasing numbers of scientific manuscripts are being written in English by authors whose primary language is not English. English has become the standard language of science, and English language manuscripts are readily accessible to the global scientific community. Therefore, non-native English speakers are encouraged to publish appropriate studies in English. Reviewers of manuscripts written in English by non-native speakers are encouraged to focus on scientific content and to provide constructive criticisms to facilitate the international exchange of information. Problems associated with writing scientific manuscripts in English can impede the publication of good science in international journals. This article describes problems in horticultural manuscripts that are often encountered by authors who are non-native English speakers and provides suggestions and resources to overcome these problems. References have been selected that provide clear help for authors in horticulture and other plant sciences.