Breeding efforts in Clethra alnifolia L., an ornamental shrub native to the Eastern U.S., are hindered by a lack of information on the reproductive behavior of this species. The objective of this study was to evaluate self-compatibility, time of stigma receptivity, and the relationship between time of pollen shed and stigma receptivity in C. alnifolia. Stigma receptivity and changes in floral morphology were monitored over a 7-day period beginning at flower opening. Pollen germination and pollen tube growth in styles were examined following self- and cross-pollinations using fluorescence microscopy. Seed set and germination were compared following self- and cross-pollinations. Anthers began to dehisce in `Hummingbird' and `Ruby Spice' the day after flowers opened, but stigmas did not become fully receptive to pollen until 2 days later. An increase in the length of pistils was observed following flower opening. Maximum elongation of pistils occurred at approximately the same time stigmas became receptive and could be utilized as an indicator of receptivity. While self-pollen tubes appeared to grow slightly slower than cross-pollen tubes, there was no indication of a self-incompatibility system acting at the stigmatic or stylar level in C. alnifolia. Self-pollinations of `Hummingbird' and `Ruby Spice' produced fewer seeds than did cross-pollinations of these cultivars. Germination of all seed obtained from this study was too poor to allow a comparison of germination rates of the self- and cross-pollinated seed. However, because a few self-progeny were obtained, emasculation is recommended when making controlled pollinations. The presence of a late acting self-incompatibility system or early-acting inbreeding depression was proposed as being responsible for the lower seed set following self-pollination.
Sandra M. Reed
Sandra M. Reed
Clethra alnifolia, which is commonly known as summersweet, is an attractive deciduous shrub that produces fragrant flower in mid-summer. Breeding efforts are hampered by a lack of information on the reproductive behavior of this native species. The objective of this study was to evaluate self-compatibility in C. alnifolia. Pollen germination and pollen tube growth in styles were examined following self- and cross-pollinations using fluorescence microscopy. Seed set and germination were compared following self- and cross-pollinations. While self-pollen tubes appeared to grow slightly slower than cross-pollen tubes, there was no indication of a self-incompatibility system acting at the stigmatic or stylar level in C. alnifolia. Self-pollinations of `Hummingbird' and `Ruby Spice' produced fewer seeds than did cross-pollinations of these cultivars. Germination of all seed obtained from this study was too poor to allow a comparison of germination rates of the self- and cross-pollinated seed. However, because a few self-progeny were obtained, emasculation is recommended when making controlled pollinations. The presence of a late-acting self-incompatibility system or early acting inbreeding depression was proposed as being responsible for the lower seed set following self-pollination.
Sandra M. Reed
Clethra alnifolia L., a native deciduous shrub cultivated as an ornamental, was recently hybridized with C. pringlei S. Wats. The purpose of this hybridization was to combine the cold hardiness and adaptability of C. alnifolia with the ornamental foliage of C. pringlei. While most of the C. alnifolia × C. pringlei hybrids more closely resembled C. alnifolia than the paternal species, a `Hokie Pink' × C. pringlei hybrid (NA71586) with foliage that flushes red like C. pringlei was recovered. The objectives of this study were to analyze cytologically the F1 and produce a F2 population from NA71586. Chromosome counts from root tips cells indicated that NA71586 has 32 chromosomes. Since the chromosome number of C. alnifolia is 2n = 32 and that of C. pringlei was found to be 2n = 16, NA71586 appears to have developed following fertilization of a C. alnifolia egg with an unreduced male gamete from C. pringlei. Both `Hokie Pink' and C. pringlei exhibited primarily bivalent pairing in pollen mother cells (PMCs). Over half of the PMCs from NA71586 contained 16 bivalents, indicating substantial homology within the C. alnifolia genome. It was theorized that C. alnifolia is either an autotetraploid that exhibits bivalent pairing or a segmental allotetraploid produced from hybridization of species with similar genomes. More than 700 F2 progeny were obtained from self-pollination of NA71586. Although many of the F2 progeny resembled NA71586, variation in foliage color, size and shape was apparent in the population.
Jacob G. Ricker, Jessica D. Lubell, and Mark H. Brand
June 2019. < https://www.turfmagazine.com/landscape-designbuildinstallation/landscape-design-goes-native/ >. Heinrich, B. 1979 Bumblebee economics. Harvard Univ. Press, Cambridge, MA Hemingson, J.C. 1986 The pollination biology of Clethra alnifolia L
Sandra M. Reed, Younghee Joung, and Mark Roh
The genus Clethra contains many ornamental species, of which the most adaptable and cold hardy is C. alnifolia L. The objective of this study was to obtain hybrids between C. alnifolia and three other ornamental Clethra species, C. acuminata Michx., C. fargesii Franch., and C. pringlei S. Wats. Viable plants were obtained from reciprocal crosses between C. alnifolia and C. fargesii, and from crosses between C. alnifolia and the other two species when C. alnifolia was used as the maternal parent. Randomly amplified polymorphic DNA (RAPD) markers were used to verify hybridity and to compare hybrids to their parents. In all cases, the hybrids had more RAPD markers in common with C. alnifolia than with their other parent. Close clustering by neighbor-joining analysis of RAPD markers and the morphological resemblance of C. alnifolia × C. acuminata and C. fargesii × C. alnifolia plants to their paternal parent indicated that these plants were of hybrid origin. The C. alnifolia × C. pringlei plants resembled C. alnifolia in many respects, but they stayed green much later in the year than did C. alnifolia with leaves remaining on the plants throughout the winter. These foliage characteristics were presumed to reflect the contribution of the evergreen C. pringlei, and thus were regarded as evidence of hybridity.
Sandra M. Reed and Margaret R. Pooler
Clethra alnifolia L. (family Clethraceae Klotzsch.) is an ornamental shrub that is native to the eastern United States ( Wilbur and Hespenheide, 1967 ). While sometimes called summersweet or sweet pepperbush, it is more commonly known as clethra
Jyotsna Sharma and Jim Rich
Plants infected with Meloidogyne spp. (root-knot nematodes) often are stunted and lose aesthetic value due to chlorosis, wilting, and leaf margin necrosis. We assessed reproduction of three root-knot nematode species, Meloidogyne arenaria, M. incognita, and M. javanica, on five plant taxa native to the southeastern U.S. The plant taxa included were: Hydrangea quercifolia `Oakleaf', Viburnum obovatum `Densa', Itea virginica `Little Henry', Illicium parviflorum, and Clethra alnifolia `Ruby Spice'. Three commonly grown non-native shrubs, Ligustrum japonicum `Texanum', Ilexcrenata `Compacta', and Buxus microphylla `Wintergem', also were included in the study to serve as susceptible, positive controls. Highest gall rating (10) was observed on roots of I. crenata `Compacta' infected with M. incognita, but highest number of eggs (6397 eggs/g of roots) was observed in plants of this cultivar inoculated with M. javanica. Few or no galls were observed on roots of the five native plant taxa, and nematode eggs were recovered only from roots of I. virginica `Little Henry' inoculated with M. arenaria and M. javanica (13 and 20 eggs/g of roots, respectively). Fresh weights of shoots or roots were not affected by nematode inoculation. Due to lack of root gall development and little or no reproduction on the native taxa, we conclude that these are resistant or immune to the three species of Meloidogyne and might be suitable for planting in infested soil.
G.W. Krewer, K.S. Delaplane, and P.A. Thomas
Bumblebees (Bombus spp.) are important pollinators of mostly self-sterile rabbiteye blueberry (Vaccinium ashei Reade). Annual bee colonies start from solitary overwintered queens who emerge in near-synchrony with rabbiteye blueberry bloom. Although colony populations may reach several hundred individuals by midsummer, in early spring most Bombus visiting rabbiteye blueberry are queens reared the previous season. Thus, practices that encourage production of queens in summer may increase populations of blueberry pollinators the next spring. In south Georgia, midsummer shortages of nectar-yielding plants may nutritionally limit queen production, and cultured bee forages may help overcome this deficiency. Candidate plants must not compete with the crop for pollinators, and they must be attractive to bees, easy to grow, vigorous, and non-invasive. In 3 years of trials, the following plants have shown promise as supplemental bumblebee forages in south Georgia: Althea (Hibiscus syriacus), abelia (Abelia ×grandifolia), vitex (Vitex agnuscastus), red clover (Trifolium pratense perenne), Mexican heather (Cuphea hyssopifolia), monkey grass (Liriope muscari), summer sweet (Clethra alnifolia), and giant sunflower (Helianthus giganteus).
Stefan B. Lura and Alan T. Whittemore
that ripen to medium red in late autumn when pollinated by a male clone. It is known to be adapted to USDA Hardiness Zones 6–10. Clethra alnifolia ‘Firefly’. Registered on 12 Feb. 2014. Registrant: Dr. Margaret Pooler, U.S. National Arboretum, 3501