Studies on Inanition in Arachis and Phaseolus

Shear, G.M.

Plant Physiology 6(2): 277-294


ISSN/ISBN: 0032-0889
PMID: 16652708
DOI: 10.1104/pp.6.2.277
Accession: 025561059

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Peanut embryos growing at room temp. in darkness on sterile agar are capable of living more than 4 mos. They ceased elongation in about 4 weeks and lost their ability to form chlorophyll after 6 weeks. They live longer and form chlorophyll for a longer time than seedlings of similar plants in which inanition has been induced by removal of the cotyledons after active growth has started. Seedlings whose cotyledons have been removed after 6 days' growth will form chlorophyll for a longer time than will seedlings of beans similarly treated. The gradual decrease in the intensity of greening is accompanied by a decrease in the amount of yellow pig-ment. The loss in weight of peanut seedlings with their cotyledons removed is nearly 3 times that of beans treated in the same way. This is due chiefly to the amount of excess food translocated to the hypocotyls previous to cotyledon removal. The % of shoot length to total length and shoot weight to total weight in starving peanuts was greater than for check plants. This relationship is just the reverse for beans. A close correlation exists between the % shoot weight to total weight of starving peanuts and beans grown at 23° C. Starving seedlings of peanuts utilize their oil reserve more economically than the checks. After the first 6 days of inanition they were unable to maintain the regular fluctuations in the % of oil that was shown by the check seedlings.