Vernalization in wheat I. A model based on the interchangeability of plant age and vernalization duration uri icon

abstract

  • Vernalization treatments of 0 to 70 d initiated when 0 to 8 leaf tips were visible were applied to plants of the winter wheat (Triticum aestivum L.) cultivars Pioneer 2548 and Augusta. All plants headed irrespective of duration of vernalization. Unvernalized plants of Pioneer 2548 and Augusta had mean final leaf numbers (FLN) of 20.8 +/- 1.3 and 21.7 +/- 1.0, respectively. Increased duration of vernalization generally reduced FLN within an age treatment until an age-dependent point of vernalization insensitivity was reached. Estimates of the minimum days of vernalization required to reach vernalization insensitivity decreased in a linear fashion as plant age at the onset of vernalization treatment increased. The number of leaves appearing after the onset of vernalization insensitivity averaged 6.3 +/- 0.5. FLN minus six appears to be a valid estimate in our experimental conditions for the onset of vernalization insensitivity, at least for plants that had six or more leaves appearing after the end of vernalization treatment. Linear regressions of FLN minus six against days of vernalization were significant for both cultivars (for treatments with six or more leaves emerging after vernalization). The Y-intercepts of the fitted regressions were close to values obtained by subtracting six from FLN of unvernalized plants. Both intercept and slope were controlled genetically. Accumulated plant age, expressed as leaf stage, enables attainment of vernalization insensitivity, independent of, or in combination with vernalization treatment.

publication date

  • 1995
  • 1995