Use of a non mist propagation system to vegetavely propagate 12 varieties of E.grandis X E. camadulensis hybrids
Mwaniki, Fiona Nyawira
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A series of nursery experiments was carried out to assess the effects of rooting medium (sand and clay subsoil, mixed in the following ratios 1:0, 1:1, 1:2, 0:1 and 2:1 respectively by volume), auxin concentration (0%, 0.6%, 0.8%, and 1 % IBA) and leaf area of cuttings (0, 30, 40, 50, 60, 80 and 100cm2) on rooting success of juvenile cuttings of Eucalyptus grandis x camadulensis hybrids. The Eucalyptus hybrids (EGC) cuttings were harvested from 5-year-old ramets, and propagated in non mist poly-tunnels, which act as propagation chambers. Among the treatments experimented, EGCs accounted for 8.6% and 14.4% of the total variability in rooting and shooting, respectively. The rest were accounted for by rooting media, IBA concentrations and their respective interactions. Results from logistic analysis carried out individually for all EGCs showed no significant interaction effect of IBA and media on the rooting of the 1 2 EGC hybrids tested. This indicates that EGC hybrids did not require the application of exogenous IBA for rooting. Cuttings without application of IBA rooted with highest rooting observed in clay sub soil (65.0%). The overall effect of propagation media was significant (p<0.01) on rooting and shooting percentage, with clay sub soil having the highest mean rooting (59.9%) and shooting percentages (81.9%) compared to sand soil which had the least mean rooting (12.5%) and shooting percentages (23.0%) among different EGCs. Leaf area had a pronounced effect on rooting and shooting percentage of EGC hybrids, with leaf area of 100cm2 giving the highest rooting (65.9%) and shooting (78.1%). Leaf area of Ocm2 gave the lowest rooting (7.5%) and shooting percentages (12.7%) and least number of roots and shoots in sand soil. On the basis of these results, EGC hybrids can be successfully propagated in a non mist poly tunnel. Clay sub soil, in combination with a leaf area of 100 cm 2 and exclusion of the use of IBA is recommended in this propagation system. Unlike mist propagation chambers, non mist poly tunnels are a cost effective method of propagating EGC hybrids and the exclusion of IBA as deduced from results of this study will further reduce production costs. In addition, this method uses materials that are readily available and can be used in rural areas which are without electricity and in limited water supply
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