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UBC Theses and Dissertations

Breeding and propagation of Meconopsis Qu, Yong


Six species of Meconopsis were investigated for self-fertility and cross compatibility in order to incorporate desirable characters from both parents. The six species used were: M. cambrica, M. villosa, M. quintuplinervia, M. betonicifolia, M. horridula, M. aculeata. Chromosome counts were made: M. cambrica, n=14; M. villosa, n=16; M. quintuplinervia, n= c.42; M. betonicifolia, n=40; M. horridula, n=28 and M. aculeata, n=28. Interspecific compatibility was correlated with differences in ploidy level between parents. All crosses made except M. cambrica x quintuplinervia set seeds. M. cambrica, M. betonicif olia, M. horridula and M. aculeata are self-compatible. Pollination mechanisms and the likelihood of apogamy were investigated in M. betonicifolia. No apogamy was found and insects are the likely pollinators for this species. As some of the species do not flower at the same time, pollen staining, pollen germination and storage conditions for the six species were studied. Experimental alteration of flowering periods through controlling temperatures and day-lengths for M. betonicifolia was also carried out. This part of the project shows: (1) pollen stainability (stained by lactophenol cotton blue) for the six species was 85% or more; (2) pollen of all six species except M. quintuplinervia germinated on an agar medium containing sucrose (5 g 1⁻¹) and H₃BO₃ (0.1 mg 1⁻¹); (3) pollen germination percentage decreased with storage time in a desiccator at 4-6°C; and (4) long daylength (16 h) was suitable for growth and flowering of M. betonicifolia. High temperature (17°C) induced earlier growth and flowering than low temperature (6°C) in M. betonicifolia. Because of difficulties in vegetative reproduction and seed storage, in vitro establishment of M. betonicifolia was investigated. The unopened capsule sterilization method was used. The seeds in the capsule germinated on Murashige and Skoog medium. Derooted seedlings, hypocotyls and seedling roots from seedlings raised on sterile artificial medium were used as explants for the in vitro establishment. This experiment shows that half strength Murashige and Skoog medium is suitable for in vitro culture of this species. The cytokinin:auxin ratio and growth regulator concentration were found to control morphogenesis of M. betonicifolia in vitro. Derooted seedlings cultured first on nutrient medium containing N⁶-benzyladenine (BA) and kinetin (Kn) differentiated more multiple meristems than those originally cultured on medium containing N⁶-(2-isopentenyl)-adenine (2ip) after being transferred into medium containing 2ip. Multiple meristems were divided and proliferated on medium containing 0.2 mg 1⁻¹ 2,4-dichlorophenoxyacetic acid (2,4-D), 5 mg 1⁻¹ 2ip and 1 mg 1⁻¹ BA. Seedling roots and hypocotyls formed callus on media containing 1, 5 and 10 mg 1⁻¹ 2,4-D.

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