Submitted to: Seed Technology Journal
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 8/2/2014
Publication Date: 10/21/2015
Citation: Morris, J.B. 2015. Seed production from Aeschynomene genetic resources rescued and regenerated using aeroponics. Seed Technology Journal. 36(2)115:122.
Interpretive Summary: Jointvetch and related species are used for cover cropping and forage. Most of these species will not produce seed when grown in the field because the season is too short. A study was done to verify the use of aeroponics for successful seed production. Eleven jointvetch and related species were grown in the field at Griffin, GA. Stem cuttings from each jointvetch plant were placed in a hydroponic cloner system during the Fall of 2012 and 2013. Most of the cuttings produced healthy roots after 2 weeks. Healthy stem cuttings were then placed in the aeroponic system inside a greenhouse. Seed weights ranged from 0.020 to 2.317 g and seed numbers ranged from 22 to 584 seeds per sample. Aeroponics is useful for producing quality seed production from these jointvetch and related species.
Technical Abstract: Jointvetch (Aeschynomene americana L. or A. americana L. var. americana) and A. villosa Poir. var. villosa are legumes used for cover cropping and forage. These accessions require a very long growing season and do not produce mature seed before the first hard freezes in Griffin, GA. This study was conducted to develop an aeroponic system for rescuing and regenerating these photoperiod and freeze-sensitive Aeschynomene accessions. One-month-old seedlings from eleven Aeschynomene accessions were planted in the field at Griffin, GA during 2012 and 2013. Four mature vegetative stem cuttings per accession with at least 3 true leaves each were removed from the Aeschynomene plants that produced flowers but did not have enough time or photoperiod to produce mature seed during the Fall of 2012 and 2013. Each cutting was placed in a hydroponic cloning machine inside the greenhouse during the Fall of both years in Griffin. After approximately 2 weeks, stem cuttings per accession with healthy root systems were placed in an aeroponic system inside the greenhouse during both years. Highly productive plants were regenerated from most of the Aeschynomene accessions in the aeroponic system. Both seed weights and numbers were influenced by year. Seed weights ranged non-significantly from 0.630 to 2.317 g while seed numbers ranged from 283 to 584 among accessions in 2012. Only the Mexican accession, PI 544176 produced significantly heavier seeds (0.390 g) as well as the most seeds (203) when compared to the other accessions in 2013. Therefore, aeroponics is useful for rescuing and regenerating seed from photoperiod and freeze-sensitive Aeschynomene accessions.