MICROPROPAGATION EXERCISES IN TEACHING PLANT PROPAGATION
Hudson T. Hartmann and John E. Whisler
Most students in university-level plant propagation courses are aware of the rapidly developing field of tissue culture as it relates to the propagation of plants. Many are eager to have some first-hand experience with the techniques involved.
In our plant propagation course at the University of California, Davis, which is given in the spring quarter, we are presently accommodating about 150 students with five 3-hour lab sections per week. In the lab we cover the usual aspects of propagation by seeds, cuttings, grafting and budding, layering, etc. Into this we have interjected two exercises using aseptic culture techniques. The first is handled during our two laboratory sessions on seed propagation in which the students sterilize and plant cymbidium orchid seeds, in nutrient agar as is done commercially. After seeding, the flasks are placed in growth chambers for germination and development of the seedlings. In the second exercise the students cut apart cymbidium orchid shoot-tip
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