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Semidian rhythmicity in the flowering response of Pharbitis nil to changes in temperature

by O.M. Heide, R.W. King, L.T Evans
Australian Journal of Plant Physiology ()

Abstract

Our earlier experiments on flowering in the short day plant Pharbitis nil involved far-red/dark (FR/D) interruptions of 90 min duration at various times during a continuous light, constant temperature period before a single inductive dark period. They revealed a rhythm with a period of 12 h, hence semidian, We concluded that the phasing of this semidian rhythm determined the length of darkness required for floral induction, This conclusion has since been challenged so we sought other pretreatments which reveal the semidian rhythm. interruptions at 12 degrees C-17 degrees C for 45-90 min at various times prior to the inductive dark period were as effective as FR/D in eliciting the semidian rhythm, with significant effects on flowering persisting for at least three cycles in constant conditions in continuous light. The rhythmic response to 12 degrees C pretreatments was 3 h out of phase with that to FR/D pretreatments. Flowering responses to the semidian rhythm exposed by 12 degrees C pretreatments were additive to and independent of those to a circadian rhythm. Some evidence was obtained of reversal of the inhibition or promotion of flowering by FR/D or 12 degrees C by exposure immediately afterwards to the other pretreatment at times of their opposite effect. Pretreatments at 12 degrees C, like those with FR/D, either reduced (if promotive) or extended (if inhibitory) the length of the dark period required for floral induction in this short day plant.

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