Factors affecting variation in the vase life response of waxflower cultivars (Myrtaceae: Chamelaucium Desf. and Verticordia spp. Desf.) tested under various vase solutions
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The effects of genotype and vase solutions on the vase lives of waxflower cultivars were studied. The vase life of 16 cultivars derived from different genetic backgrounds showed a variation. The vase life of Chamelaucium uncinatum cultivars held in deionised water was generally the shortest, with four cultivars averaging 9.5 and 8.9 days for flowers and leaves while the vase lives of C. uncinatum × megalopetalum hybrids were on average 16.0 and 25.0 days for flowers and leaves, respectively. The hybrid 'Southern Stars' with C. uncinatum × Verticordia plumosa as parents had the longest flower vase life of 24.9 days, although another Verticordia × Chamelaucium had a 95-day flower vase life and other hybrids of the cultivars of C. uncinatum and Verticordia grandis Desf. ('WX73'), C. sp. Gingin Marchantii ('WX97') and C foriferum ('Lady Stephanie') as a parent had intermediate to short vase lives of 11.4 to 15.5 days. The cultivars responded most to 8-hydroxyquniline sulphate (HQS) + sucrose or HQS + sucrose + silver thiosulphate (STS), being 1.5- to 1.6-folds higher than in deionized water. The cultivars showed a varied response to a vase solution of sucrose + HQS + STS, with which C. uncinatum vase life increased 1.9-fold compared to 1.7-fold for C. megalopetalum. Waxflower s were found to be susceptible to water stress, causing flower s to close and shortening vase life. On average for the 80 cultivar-vase solution combinations tested, flower vase life ended when the stems reached 75.5 ± 5% fresh weigh. Longer vase life cultivars had a greater ability of maintaining a water balance at or above 75% for longer.
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