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Tulips, Fusarium and ethylene: changing the paradigm
- Miller, W. B.
- Acta horticulturae 2019 no.1237 pp. 153-160
- Fusarium oxysporum, Tulipa, bulbs, cultivars, ethylene, ethylene production, financial economics, fungi
- Fusarium oxysporum f. sp. tulipae causes basal rot in tulip and is a cause of significant economic loss. Both direct bulb loss and indirect quality loss from ethylene that is produced by the fungus when growing on tulips, can occur. Our ongoing research has demonstrated that ca. 20% of tulip cultivars are essentially unaffected by ethylene when treated in the October-November time frame. This challenges the long-standing belief that all cultivars are damaged by ethylene exposure. Furthermore, ca. 50% of tulip cultivars apparently do not support excessive levels of ethylene production upon Fusarium inoculation. To date, results indicate no relationship between cultivar ethylene sensitivity and ethylene production of inoculated bulbs.