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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

Title: Response of Prunus Ferganensis, Prunus Persica, and Two Interspecific Hybrids to Moderate Drought Stress

Authors
item Rieger, Mark - UGA
item Lo Bianco, R - UGA
item Okie, William

Submitted to: Tree Physiology
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: June 29, 2002
Publication Date: January 3, 2003
Citation: RIEGER, M., LO BIANCO, R., OKIE, W.R. RESPONSE OF PRUNUS FERGANENSIS, PRUNUS PERSICA, AND TWO INTERSPECIFIC HYBRIDS TO MODERATE DROUGHT STRESS. TREE PHYSIOLOGY. 2003. v.23. p.51-58.

Interpretive Summary: Prunus ferganensis, a close relative of the cultivated peach (Prunus persica), is native to arid regions of central Asia and may possess traits valuable for improving drought tolerance of commercial peach varieties. One distinguishing feature of P. ferganensis is its prominent, elongated, unbranched leaf veins, which are inherited as a simple recessive trait. To understand whether this trait could be related to drought response, we studied leaf appearance and physiological parameters in P. ferganensis, peach, and two interspecific hybrids, one which possesses the long-vein trait (BY94P7585), and another which does not (BY94P7589). We looked at many plant responses related to water stress Although the long-vein trait per se was not associated with superior drought tolerance, the leaf size and leaf thickness traits of P. ferganensis may be incorporated into peach by use of this species in breeding programs.

Technical Abstract: Prunus ferganensis, a close relative of the cultivated peach (Prunus persica), is native to arid regions of central Asia and may possess traits valuable for improving drought tolerance of commercial peach varieties. One distinguishing feature of P. ferganensis is its prominent, elongated, unbranched leaf venation pattern, which behaves as a simple recessive trait in segregating populations of P. ferganensis x P. persica hybrids. To understand whether this trait could be related to drought response, we studied leaf morphological and physiological parameters in P. ferganensis, peach, and two interspecific hybrids, one which possesses the long-vein trait (BY94P7585), and another which does not (BY94P7589). The four genotypes were grafted onto `Guardian' peach rootstock and grown in pots in a greenhouse for 3-4 months prior to drought treatments. Each genotype was divided into well-watered and water stressed groups, the latter accomplished by irrigating at 25-50% of rate of evapotranspiration (ET) measured in well watered plants (well watered plants received 100% of ET daily). Drought stress reduced photosynthesis (A) and leaf conductance (g) by 50-83%, reduced total leaf area per plant by 17-24%, but generally did not affect mid-morning leaf water potential, responses consistent with non-hydraulic signaling of decreased water availability by roots. Although the long-vein trait per se was not associated with superior drought tolerance, the leaf size and leaf thickness traits of P. ferganensis may be incorporated into peach by use of this species in breeding programs.

Last Modified: 9/23/2014
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