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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

Research Project: Cut-Flower Longevity among Accessions of Rudbeckia, Phlox and Coreopsis in the National Plant Germplasm System

Location: Application Technology Research Unit

Project Number: 3607-21000-017-03
Project Type: Specific Cooperative Agreement

Start Date: Sep 20, 2012
End Date: Jun 30, 2014

Objective:
This research will examine novel Rudbeckia, Phlox and Coreopsis species and varieties for the specialty cut flower market, and evaluate their response to cold storage.

Approach:
The general evaluation protocol developed by Dole et al. (2009) and provided in detail by Dole (2010) will be followed. Sixty eight varieties of Rudbeckia, including species and commercial cultivars, as well as species of Phlox and Coreopsis (Table 1) will be field-grown (already in progress) and stems harvested when outer flowers are fully opened; harvesting will be done in the morning and stems will be immediately placed into buckets of tap water. Stems (about 20-25 per accession) will be brought to the laboratory and sorted by flower size and stem caliper into three groups. Stems will be re-cut to approximately 30 cm depending on species and treated as follows: 1. Placed in vases with deionized water at room temperature. 2. Placed in buckets of deionized water in a 40F cooler, stems removed, re-cut, and placed in vases at room temperature after one or three weeks. Wherever possible, three flower stems will be included per vase and 3-5 replicates of each accession will be evaluated. Flower performance will be documented by capturing digital images at regular intervals and assessing overall quality by visual observation following recommendations by Prof. Dole. Vase life study will be terminated when petals begin to turn brown or stems collapse.

Last Modified: 8/1/2014
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