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Description

Main research question/goal
In this project we want to investigate to what extent interspecific crosses are possible within  Hydrangea, Hibiscus and Buddleja. Product innovation in woody ornamental plants is commercially important. Especially in the segment of visually attractive plants compactness, flower colour, leaf shape, sterility, etc. are key features. Interesting traits are often present within the genus, but not always within the commercially attractive cultivars or species. Interspecific hybridization might be a solution. Hence we’re investigating which crossing barriers are present and seeking how to circumvent them. We are also developing techniques for rapid screening and characterization of the resulting offspring.

Research approach
Within the three above-mentioned genera we are carrying out interspecific crosses. The fruits resulting from interspecific crosses are being harvested in an immature stage. These embryos or ovules are then being inoculated on an in vitro  medium. The use of this in vitro embryo rescue technique allows for a partial elimination of barriers which prevent the interspecific crosses and the generation of new hybrid offspring. The hybrid nature of the F1 offspring is then being analyzed both on a morphological and molecular level. For this we are using molecular markers and chromosome staining methods.

Relevance/Valorisation
Interesting offspring are obtained in the different genera. These F1 seedlings will be evaluated  for several years in field trials. If the required traits are actually present and the plant has a commercial value, it will eventually enter the market. As for commercialisation, we are working closely together with the cooperative BEST-select, a group of twenty woody stock nurseries.

Funding provider(s)
IWT - Instituut voor de aanmoediging door wetenschap en technologie in Vlaanderen
AcronymCOLLECTIEFBOOM
StatusFinished
Effective start/end date1/06/0331/05/07

ID: 4145373