Modification of gibberellin biosynthesis in the grafted apple scion allows control of tree height independent of the rootstock

A - Papers appearing in refereed journals

Bulley, S. M., Wilson, F. M., Hedden, P., Phillips, A. L., Croker, S. J. and James, D. J. 2005. Modification of gibberellin biosynthesis in the grafted apple scion allows control of tree height independent of the rootstock. Plant Biotechnology Journal. 3 (2), pp. 215-223.

AuthorsBulley, S. M., Wilson, F. M., Hedden, P., Phillips, A. L., Croker, S. J. and James, D. J.
Abstract

The availability of short stature apple scions that required minimal applications of chemical growth retardants and could be used with a range of rootstocks would be of considerable benefit to fruit growers. We have suppressed the expression of a gene encoding the gibberellin (GA) biosynthetic enzyme GA 20-oxidase to reduce the levels of bioactive GAs in a scion variety, resulting in significant reductions in stem height. Application of GA(3) reversed the effect. The scion remained dwarfed after grafting on to normally invigorating rootstocks, whilst control plants of the same cultivar displayed the expected vigour when grafted on to these rootstocks. This approach could be applicable to any perennial crop variety, allowing dwarf trees to be obtained on any available rootstock or on their own roots without the need for chemical growth retardant application. In effect, seedlings that are well suited to local conditions (drought, salinity) could be employed as tree rootstocks, as could existing rootstocks valued for characters other than vigour control, such as pest and disease resistance.

KeywordsBiotechnology & Applied Microbiology; Plant Sciences
Year of Publication2005
JournalPlant Biotechnology Journal
Journal citation3 (2), pp. 215-223
Digital Object Identifier (DOI)doi:10.1111/j.1467-7652.2005.00119.x
PubMed ID17173621
Open accessPublished as non-open access
Funder project or code504
ISSN14677644
PublisherWiley

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