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Crop Science Abstract -

Effects of Temperature and Light Intensity on the Expression of a Variegated Leaf Pattern in Bermudagrass1


This article in CS

  1. Vol. 15 No. 3, p. 445-447
    Received: Sept 3, 1974

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  1. Roy A. Johnston and
  2. Charles M. Taliaferro2



In 1971 a variegated plant was found among an F1 bermudagrass [Cynodon dactylon (L.) Pers.,] population growing on the Agron. Res. Stn. at Stillwater, Okla. The variegated “Zebra” pattern consists of alternating green and chlorotic stripes that occur horizontally across the leaf blades. Occurrence of the Zebra pattern on the original plant and its progeny seemed to be environmentally dependent. Consequently, this study was designed to ascertain the effects of temperature and light intensity on the development and expression of the Zebra pattern. Two growth chamber tests, four temperature regimes (16, 21, 27, and 32 C), and two light intensities (16,150 and 32,300 lux) were used. A photoperiod of 14 hours at constant temperatures was used. Expression of the mutant character was primarily dependent on light intensity, with an increased amount and prominence of chlorotic stripping at the high intensity exposure (32,300 lux). Maximum expression of the character occurred on plants growing at 21 C and 32,300 lux of light. Plants growing at 27 C developed only slightly less chlorotic strippingthan those grown at 21 C, while those growing at 32 C developed no chlorotic strips at 16,150 lux and developed only slight stripping at 32,300 lux. Plants growing at 16 C and 16,500 lux had little stripping whereas those grown at 16 C and 32,300 lux had only a moderate reduction in stripping as compared to optimum temperature-light regimes.

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