Re: rooting plants from leaves

I was interested in Kathy Upton's comments about regeneration from detached
leaves.  Someone on another listserv made a similar comment recently about
the phenomenon in the non-aroid Rhododendron.  I got quite interested in
epiphyllous shoot formation when I was doing my PhD.  In doing my
literature search I came across the following paper;

Hagemann, A., (1932) Untersuchungen an Blattstecklingen.
Gartenbauwissenschaft 6, 69-195.  

Hagemann found that detachment was the only stimulus required to induce de
novo shoot and/or root regeneration from leaves of 778 out of 1042
dicotyledenous species; 287 species formed shoots.  Hagemann tried a few
aroids and reported roots from 75% of detached leaves of Pothos auritus
and from 100% of detached leaves of Zamioculcas zamiifolia.  He also
indicates that Pinellia tuberifera and Zamioculcas Loddigesii (sic) produce
both roots and shoots. (This is an old paper; nomenclature has changed). 
Deni Bown (p 114) says of Zamioculcas zamiifolia that "as is quite common
in succulent plants, but unknown elsewhere in Araceae, the leaflets can
sprout into new plants and form tiny tubers at the base".

It is also interesting to note that the bud-inducing properties of kinetin,
the first cytokinin discovered in 1956, were applied horticulturally almost
immediately in a similar non-tissue culture system; see

Plummer, T. H. and Leopold, A. C., 1957.  Chemical treatment for bud
formation in Saintpaulia.  Proc. J. Amer. hort. Sci. 70, 442-444

It may be that exogenous cytokinin will trigger shoot formation from
detached leaves that do not otherwise respond.

David Constantine

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