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Haishan An, Jiajia Meng, Fangjie Xu, Shuang Jiang, Xiaoqing Wang, Chunhui Shi, Boqiang Zhou, Jun Luo and Xueying Zhang

Vegetative propagation by cuttings is a very popular method. However, blueberry propagation using cuttings is still a main factor limiting its expansion because its results can vary according to the blueberry cultivar and environmental factors. This study aimed to evaluate the rooting abilities of hardwood cuttings for six blueberry cultivars (O’Neal, Misty, Diana, Biloxi, Bluebeauty, and Coville) using three different exogenous indole-butyric acid (IBA) concentrations (1000, 2000, and 3000 ppm), and to determine if the cutting position (basal, central, apical) affects rooting performance. A control treatment (0 ppm IBA) was also performed. After 90 days of each treatment, rooting percentage, average root length, and average root number per cutting were assessed and used to calculate rooting index, which is a measure of rooting ability. The rooting percentages of hardwood cuttings differed largely among cultivars and were highest for ‘Bluebeauty’ (68.55%), followed by ‘Biloxi’ (68.01%). The rooting index values of these two cultivars (33.59 and 35.18, respectively) were significantly higher than those of the other four cultivars. The rooting response of blueberry hardwood cuttings to IBA concentrations was quadratic, and 1000 and 2000 ppm IBA were sufficient to express the maximum rooting percentage in most cultivars. The rooting abilities of basal, central, and apical cuttings were similar with treatments with high IBA concentrations. The effects of the cultivar, IBA concentration, and interaction between them on rooting percentage, average root length, and average root number were significant; however, the effects of the cutting position on the rooting percentage and average root length were not. This suggested that the rooting abilities of blueberry hardwood cuttings were significantly influenced by the cultivar and IBA concentration rather than by the cutting position.

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Daniel F. Warnock and Charles E. Voigt

Greenhouse production of rosemary (Rosmarinus officinalis L.) as small potted Christmas tree topiaries for holiday sales has become necessary for many companies marketing to large retail outlets. Topiaries must be sheared multiple times to obtain an acceptable Christmas tree shape. Cultivars vary in physical attributes, suggesting that they may respond differentially to mechanical shearing during production. This study assessed sixteen rosemary cultivars for their potential as potted Christmas tree shaped topiaries. Beginning July 2001, rosemary plants derived from vegetative propagation of shoot tips were provided high fertility and maximum light in a greenhouse. From August to October, plants were pruned monthly for a total of three shearing events. The crop was considered mature on the targeted market date of 5 Dec. Final plant quality was visually assessed using a 1 to 5 scale that accounted for taper, plant-to-pot ratio, canopy density, foliage quality, and overall appeal, with one point being removed for each factor not meeting industry expectations. The cultivars varied in their performance as Christmas tree shaped topiaries with most being unacceptable due to minimal basal branching or excessive leaf burn that negatively impacted shape, taper, and aesthetics. Six of the cultivars, `Taylor's Blue', `Herb Cottage', `Joyce DeBaggio' (Golden Rain), `Shady Acres', `Rexford' (Rex), and an unnamed clone, were suitable for commercial use having visual ratings ranging from 3.8 to 4.5. These cultivars had equally healthy foliage with little damage. `Taylor's Blue', `Shady Acres', `Joyce DeBaggio' (Golden Rain), the unnamed clone, and `Herb Cottage' had foliar damage ratings ranging from 3.3 to 3.8 and were not significantly different from the most healthy cultivars, `Logee White' (Thinleaf White), `Salem', and `Hill Hardy', all of which had mean ratings of 4.0. These cultivars should be examined for additional attributes that may enhance their performance as Christmas tree shaped topiaries.

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E.K. Gubrium, D.G. Clark, H.J. Klee, T.A. Nell and J.E. Barrett

We are studying the horticultural performance of two model plant systems that carry a mutant gene that confers ethylene-insensitivity: Never Ripe tomatoes and petunia plants transformed with the mutant etr1-1 gene isolated from Arabidopsis thaliana. Having two model systems to compare side-by-side allows us to determine with greater certainty ethylene's role at different developmental stages. Presence of the mutant etr1-1 gene in transgenic petunias was determined using three techniques: PCR analysis, the seedling triple response assay (inhibition of stem elongation, radial swelling of stem and roots, and an exaggerated apical hook when grown in the dark and in the presence of ethylene), and the flower wilting response to pollination, which is known to be induced by ethylene. Flowers from ethylene-insensitive petunias took almost four times as long to wilt after pollination as wild-type plants. It is well known that fruit ripening in Never Ripe tomato is inhibited, and a similar delayed fruit ripening phenotype is observed in petunia plants transformed with etr1-1. In an effort to maintain ethylene-insensitive petunia plants by vegetative propagation, we observed that the rate of adventitious root formation was much lower with transgenic plants than in wild-type plants. In subsequent experiments on adventitious root formation in Never Ripe tomato, we observed the same result. Therefore, while ethylene-insensitive tomato and petunia plants appear phenotypically normal for many characters, other factors are altered by the presence of this mutation. The fact that these changes are present in two model systems helps to define the role of ethylene perception in plant growth and reproduction.

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Nicole Smith and Prem L. Bhalla

Brassica oleracea is an important vegetable crop, which includes fully cross-fertile cultivars such as broccoli, Brussels sprouts, cabbage, cauliflower, collard, kohlrabi, and kale. F1 hybrids are desirable, as plants grown from hybrid seeds benefit from the heterotic effect of crossing genetically distinct pure lines. But, there is no practical and reliable method to create male sterility for hybrid seed production that is suitable for Brassica vegetables. We have been working to induce nuclear male sterility in cauliflower (Brassica oleracea var. botrytis) by antisense inhibition of Bcp1, a unique anther-specific gene of Brassica. The production of nuclear male-sterile lines will enable male lines with superior agronomic traits to be converted to female parents. Thus, vegetative propagation of parent plants for hybrid seed production by tissue culture is desirable. To achieve this objective, we compared various plant tissues, including stem, petiole, leaf, leaf rib, flower stem, pedicel, flower bud, and petal as explants for tissue culture propagation of an Australian cultivar (B-4) of cauliflower, Brassica oleracea var. botrytis. Four different MS based media containing different amounts of BAP, NAA, GA3, and silver nitrate were used. The cultures were incubated at 25°C with a 16-hr photoperiod. Initial response was visible within 10 days, but percentage callus, root, and shoot formation was scored after 3 weeks of culturing. Of all the explants tested, pedicel explants showed maximum shoot initiation and leaf explant did not respond to regeneration under the conditions tested. The results from these on going experiments will be presented and discussed.

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K.J. Vining, Q. Zhang, A.O. Tucker, C. Smith and T.M. Davis

Mentha longifolia, a wild relative of the polyploid, cultivated Mentha (mint) species, was evaluated as a potential model system for genetic research relevant to the cultivated mints. Fourteen Mentha longifolia accessions maintained by the US Department of Agriculture (USDA), Agricultural Research Service, National Clonal Germplasm Repository (NCGR), were highly diverse with respect to geographic origin, oil composition, verticillium wilt resistance, aspects of morphology, and molecular marker polymorphism. Accession CMEN 584 was the only carvone chemotype, while CMEN 682 was the only accession with high menthol content. Trans-piperitone oxide was the primary oil component of accessions CMEN 17 and CMEN 18, while pulegone was most abundant in CMEN 20, CMEN 500, CMEN 501, and CMEN 585. Four accessions—CMEN 585, CMEN 17, CMEN 501, and CMEN 81—were consistently resistant to verticillium wilt, while CMEN 584 and CMEN 516 were highly susceptible. Pairwise similarity coefficients were calculated and a UPGMA (unweighted pair-group analysis) tree was constructed on the basis of 63 informative randomly amplified polymorphic DNA (RAPD) marker bands. CMEN 585 and CMEN 584 shared the greatest number of bands (16), and formed a distinct cluster in the UPGMA tree. Seven pairs of accessions had no bands in common, emphasizing the high degree of molecular diversity represented by these accessions. The favorable features of diploid (2n = 2x = 24) genome constitution, comparatively small genome size (400 to 500 Mb), self-fertility, fecundity, and diversity with respect to economically relevant traits, contribute to M. longifolia's potential usefulness as a model system for the cultivated mints. As a perennial species amenable to vegetative propagation, M. longifolia's spectrum of susceptibility/resistance to an important vascular wilt disease encourages its further evaluation as a system for broader studies of plant–microbe interactions and disease resistance mechanisms.

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Larry A. Rupp, William A. Varga and Roger Kjelgren

Bigtoothmaple(Acer grandidentatum Nutt.) is of interest for its fall color and potential use in water-conserving landscapes. Clonal propagation of desirable selections would be beneficial. Since bigtooth maple commonly self-propagates by layering, we explored mound layering as a means of vegetative propagation. A stool bed was established in 1999 with seedlings grown from northern Utah seed. Beginning in 2001, seedlings were dormant pruned to their base and shoots allowed to grow until early July, when treatments were applied. At the time of treatment application for the reported experiments, shoot bases were girdled with 24-gauge copper wire, covered with conifer wood shavings, and kept moist during the growing season. The effects of rooting hormones and enclosure of the rooting environment on rooting were examined. On 7 July 2002, 32 trees were randomly selected and the four tallest shoots within each tree were treated with either 0, 1:5, 1:10, or 1:20 (v/v) solutions of Dip-N-Gro© rooting hormone (1% IBA, 0.5% NAA, boron). There was no significant difference in rooted shoots between treatments and 81% of the trees had at least one rooted shoot. On 9 July 2004, 39 trees were selected and two shoots per tree were girdled. One-half of the stool bed area was treated by underlaying the shavings with BioBarrier© (17.5% trifluralin a.i.). Measurements on 12 Nov. 2004 showed no apparent treatment effect on rooting and 90% of the trees had at least one rooted shoot. This research demonstrates that mound layering is an effective means of rooting shoots of juvenile bigtooth maples. Further research will examine the effectiveness of the technique in propagating mature clones.

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Duane W. Greene

requirements, seed germination success, preferred methods of propagation, and suggested times for most effective vegetative propagation are given. Sensitivity to abiotic and biotic stress is mentioned. The performance of grafted trees is critiqued. The species

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Douglas A. Cox

General Aspects of Propagation, Seed Propagation, Vegetative Propagation, Tissue Culture Propagation, and Propagation of Selected Plant Species. Most parts are divided into chapters (21 overall) containing at least five subheadings. Each chapter ends with

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James L. Brewbaker

widely studied as clones using vegetative propagation methods of Shi and Brewbaker (2006) . Description Yield and psyllid resistance. Interspecific hybrids of L. leucocephala ssp. glabrata × L. esculenta are arboreal, vigorous vegetatively, and

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Freek Vrugtman

parentage in 1997; initial vegetative propagation took place in 1999. New growth is a distinctive red-bronze, changing within a few days to bronze-gold and then yellow chartreuse as the flowers begin to open. During the flowering period the color of the