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This article in AJ

  1. Vol. 79 No. 3, p. 587-590
    Received: July 21, 1986

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A Hot-Wire Technique for Girdling Stems and Petioles of Herbaceous Plants1

  1. Steven A. Dewey,
  2. David O. Chilcote and
  3. Arnold P. Appleby2



Girdling is often useful in studying translocation of herbicides, plant-growth regulators, and natural plant components. A hot-wiretechnique for girdling petioles and stems of herbaceous broadleaf plants using two girdling instruments was studied. One apparatus used AC current to heat a loop in a copper wire. Current was regulated with a rheostat. The other device was a battery-powered medical cautery instrument with a modified nichrome wire loop. With either device, the hot wire was passed back and forth along a 20- to 30-mm section of petiole or stem until cellular collapse was evident, usually 30 to 60 s. Girdling essentially eliminated basipetal movement of 14C-assimilate but did not reduce acropetal translocation of simazine (6-chloro-AyV-diethyl-l,3,5-triazine-2,4-diamine), an apoplastically mobile herbicide, in tall morningglory [Ipomoea purpurea (L.) Roth]. The method is quick and allows precise placement of girdles

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