Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

AgriLife Research scientists trumpeting possible new adaptation of tropical flower

04.03.2011
Breeding program at Vernon expands to under-utilized crops

Texas AgriLife Research scientists are trying to bring more beauty to the colder regions of the state by breeding winter-hardiness into a tropical ornamental plant, the angel’s trumpet flower.

Dr. Dariusz Malinowski, Texas AgriLife Research plant physiologist and forage agronomist in Vernon, is working to breed angel's trumpet with varying shapes and colors. (Texas AgriLIfe Research photo by Dr. Dariusz Malinowski)

Dr. Dariusz Malinowski, AgriLife Research plant physiologist and forage agronomist in Vernon, along with Dr. Bill Pinchak and Shane Martin, both with AgriLife Research, and Steve Brown, program director for Texas Foundation Seed Service, began the project three years ago.

The goal is to develop new cultivars with a range of flower colors, shapes and size, Malinowski said. The project has already resulted in about 25 breeding lines being sent to the Texas A&M University System Office of Technology Commercialization. The next step is to offer the new lines commercially.

Several commercial nurseries have expressed interest in evaluating many of these lines this spring, Brown said. Evaluation will include commercial production and propagation to produce commercial quantities of angel’s trumpets.

“Once successful evaluations are completed, Texas homeowners should be able to find these unusual and beautiful flowering shrubs in their local garden centers in the spring of 2013 or 2014,” he said.

The flower program, which also includes hibiscus, has been added to the research objectives at Vernon as the researchers try to breed in drought-tolerance and winter-hardiness into non-traditional or under-utilized crops that have ornamental value, he said.

Angel’s trumpet is the generic name for the Brugmansia genus of flowering plants native to the subtropical regions of South America, along the Andes from Colombia to northern Chile and also in southeastern Brazil.

Dr. Dariusz Malinowski, Texas AgriLife Research plant physiologist and forage agronomist in Vernon, shows the size of his angel's trumpet breeding lines that he is developing. (Texas AgriLIfe Research photo by Kay Ledbetter)

The plants are perennial shrubs or small trees that typically reach heights of 9-30 feet with a tan bark, Malinowski said. The leaves are alternate, generally large, 4-12 inches long and about 2-7 inches broad.

The large, pendulous flowers are very dramatic, trumpet-shaped flowers that can range from 1 foot to 2.5 feet long and 4 inches to 12 inches across at the wide end, he said. The flowers most traditionally are white, yellow and pink, with some rarer orange or red lines.

“The angel trumpets are very attractive ornamental plants grown in gardens in the southern regions of the state or as container plants further north,” Malinowski said.“They will not tolerate frost or freeze.”

He said they are testing breeding lines for winter survival of the roots to determine which ones will be able to survive in the Vernon-to-Dallas region. The growing region must not have temperatures that drop below 15 F. Several lines grown in the researchers’ gardens have regrown from the roots in the spring and bloomed by the end of the summer.

“We hope to extend the ornamental use of angel’s trumpet into this region by breeding and selecting lines with a greater ability to survive the winter,” Malinowski said.

He said the height of the trees will be affected by the die-off of the stems each year, so the winter-hardy lines might only get to about 5 feet tall.

But that is not affecting the beauty of the flowers, Malinowski said. Some of the most interesting new lines include one with flowers divided into six to eight parts, instead of the typical five parts.

“These additional parts make the flower much larger than the typical bloom,” he said. “And recently, we’ve been able to add a trait of double flowers to this atypical flower form.”

Malinowski said other lines have extremely long “whiskers,” up to 5 inches long, as well as new colors such as coral or deep golden and orange tones.

“One of our goals is to create flowers with multiple colors,” he said. “One of the lines has double flowers, where the outside skirt is white and the inside skirt is yellowish. Another line also has double flowers, with the outside skirt in light pink and the inside skirt in dark pink.”

Contacts

Dr. Dariusz Malinowski, 940-552-9941, dmalinow@ag.tamu.edu
Steve Brown, 940-552-6226, rsbrown@ag.tamu.edu

Dr. Dariusz Malinowski | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://www.tamu.edu

More articles from Agricultural and Forestry Science:

nachricht New 3-D model predicts best planting practices for farmers
26.06.2017 | Carl R. Woese Institute for Genomic Biology, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

nachricht Fighting a destructive crop disease with mathematics
21.06.2017 | University of Cambridge

All articles from Agricultural and Forestry Science >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Manipulating Electron Spins Without Loss of Information

Physicists have developed a new technique that uses electrical voltages to control the electron spin on a chip. The newly-developed method provides protection from spin decay, meaning that the contained information can be maintained and transmitted over comparatively large distances, as has been demonstrated by a team from the University of Basel’s Department of Physics and the Swiss Nanoscience Institute. The results have been published in Physical Review X.

For several years, researchers have been trying to use the spin of an electron to store and transmit information. The spin of each electron is always coupled...

Im Focus: The proton precisely weighted

What is the mass of a proton? Scientists from Germany and Japan successfully did an important step towards the most exact knowledge of this fundamental constant. By means of precision measurements on a single proton, they could improve the precision by a factor of three and also correct the existing value.

To determine the mass of a single proton still more accurate – a group of physicists led by Klaus Blaum and Sven Sturm of the Max Planck Institute for Nuclear...

Im Focus: On the way to a biological alternative

A bacterial enzyme enables reactions that open up alternatives to key industrial chemical processes

The research team of Prof. Dr. Oliver Einsle at the University of Freiburg's Institute of Biochemistry has long been exploring the functioning of nitrogenase....

Im Focus: The 1 trillion tonne iceberg

Larsen C Ice Shelf rift finally breaks through

A one trillion tonne iceberg - one of the biggest ever recorded -- has calved away from the Larsen C Ice Shelf in Antarctica, after a rift in the ice,...

Im Focus: Laser-cooled ions contribute to better understanding of friction

Physics supports biology: Researchers from PTB have developed a model system to investigate friction phenomena with atomic precision

Friction: what you want from car brakes, otherwise rather a nuisance. In any case, it is useful to know as precisely as possible how friction phenomena arise –...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

»We are bringing Additive Manufacturing to SMEs«

19.07.2017 | Event News

The technology with a feel for feelings

12.07.2017 | Event News

Leipzig HTP-Forum discusses "hydrothermal processes" as a key technology for a biobased economy

12.07.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Researchers create new technique for manipulating polarization of terahertz radiation

20.07.2017 | Information Technology

High-tech sensing illuminates concrete stress testing

20.07.2017 | Materials Sciences

First direct observation and measurement of ultra-fast moving vortices in superconductors

20.07.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>