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Somatic embryogenesis in Phoenix dactylifera L. using floral bud explants

Abul-Soad, A. A., Emara, K. S., Abdallah, A. S., Mahdi, S. M.
Acta horticulturae 2017 no.1187 pp. 13-28
2,4-D, Phoenix dactylifera, buds, callus, commercialization, cultivars, culture media, explants, histology, isopentenyladenine, recalcitrant species, shoot tips, sodium hypochlorite, somatic embryogenesis, somatic embryos, spathes, spikelets, tissue culture, trees
Understanding the appropriate pathway of somatic embryogenesis in date palm (Phoenix dactylifera L.) would pave the way into conservation and commercialization of superior cultivars within a relatively short period. In the current study, the floral buds were successfully utilized to propagate one of the most recalcitrant plant species via tissue culture. Using floral buds as explants enabled us to overcome a set of in vitro obstacles facing the widely used shoot tip explants. The immature intact inflorescence spathe, was excised from the parent tree and immersed in 30% sodium hypochlorite solution for 5 min. The initial explants of floral bud spikelets induced yellowish compact callus after 2months on the starting medium containing 0.1 mg L-1 2,4 Di-chlorophenoxy acetic acid (2,4-D) and 1.0 mg L-1 2-isopentenyl adenine (2iP). Presence of 0.1 mg L-1 2.4-D in the medium was essential for the pro-embryos to undergo maturation and develop into white normal somatic embryos. Histological study of explants indicated the influence of an accurate developmental stage of initial explants to respond to the culture medium and develop further into somatic embryos.