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The Cultivation of Arabidopsis for Experimental Research Using Commercially Available Peat-Based and Peat-Free Growing Media.

Drake T, Keating M, Summers R, Yochikawa A, Pitman T, Dodd AN - PLoS ONE (2016)

Bottom Line: Moreover, peat extraction reduces peatland biodiversity and releases stored carbon and methane into the atmosphere.Arabidopsis biomass accumulation and seed yield were reduced by cultivation on several types of peat-free growing media.Overall, we conclude that Arabidopsis performs best when cultivated on peat-based growing media because seed yield was almost always reduced when peat-free media were used.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: School of Biological Sciences, University of Bristol, Bristol Life Sciences Building, 24 Tyndall Avenue, Bristol BS8 1TQ, United Kingdom.

ABSTRACT
Experimental research involving Arabidopsis thaliana often involves the quantification of phenotypic traits during cultivation on compost or other growing media. Many commercially-available growing media contain peat, but peat extraction is not sustainable due to its very slow rate of formation. Moreover, peat extraction reduces peatland biodiversity and releases stored carbon and methane into the atmosphere. Here, we compared the experimental performance of Arabidopsis on peat-based and several types of commercially-available peat-free growing media (variously formed from coir, composted bark, wood-fibre, and domestic compost), to provide guidance for reducing peat use in plant sciences research with Arabidopsis. Arabidopsis biomass accumulation and seed yield were reduced by cultivation on several types of peat-free growing media. Arabidopsis performed extremely poorly on coir alone, presumably because this medium was completely nitrate-free. Some peat-free growing media were more susceptible to fungal contamination. We found that autoclaving of control (peat-based) growing media had no effect upon any physiological parameters that we examined, compared with non-autoclaved control growing media, under our experimental conditions. Overall, we conclude that Arabidopsis performs best when cultivated on peat-based growing media because seed yield was almost always reduced when peat-free media were used. This may be because standard laboratory protocols and growth conditions for Arabidopsis are optimized for peat-based media. However, during the vegetative growth phase several phenotypic traits were comparable between plants cultivated on peat-based and some peat-free media, suggesting that under certain circumstances peat-free media can be suitable for phenotypic analysis of Arabidopsis.

No MeSH data available.


Related in: MedlinePlus

Establishment of Arabidopsis seedlings on peat-based and peat-free growing media.The proportion of seedlings that continued to produce leaves after transfer from sterile culture to growing media was determined in two experimental repeats for (a) Col-0 and (b) L. er. backgrounds. The experiment included a comparison of native (N) and autoclaved (A) media. N = 12 per experimental repeat.
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pone.0153625.g001: Establishment of Arabidopsis seedlings on peat-based and peat-free growing media.The proportion of seedlings that continued to produce leaves after transfer from sterile culture to growing media was determined in two experimental repeats for (a) Col-0 and (b) L. er. backgrounds. The experiment included a comparison of native (N) and autoclaved (A) media. N = 12 per experimental repeat.

Mentions: A very high proportion of seedlings established successfully on all growing media, following transfer from agar, except for autoclaved Westland media and domestic compost (Fig 1A and 1B). In one experimental repeat, very few seedlings established successfully in autoclaved Westland media due to powdery mildew within the compost, whereas seedlings established well when this media was infection-free. In the absence of infection, there was also variability in seedling establishment when domestic compost was used (Fig 1A and 1B). This could be associated with batch-to-batch heterogeneity of this medium compared with commercial growing media. In Sylvamix, Col-0 seedling establishment was similar to the Levington control medium, but L. er. seedlings had reduced establishment frequency in both trials (Fig 1B). For both backgrounds, seedlings established less well in domestic compost, with fewer than half of seedlings surviving in one experimental repeat and less than 100% establishment in the other repeat (Fig 1A and 1B).


The Cultivation of Arabidopsis for Experimental Research Using Commercially Available Peat-Based and Peat-Free Growing Media.

Drake T, Keating M, Summers R, Yochikawa A, Pitman T, Dodd AN - PLoS ONE (2016)

Establishment of Arabidopsis seedlings on peat-based and peat-free growing media.The proportion of seedlings that continued to produce leaves after transfer from sterile culture to growing media was determined in two experimental repeats for (a) Col-0 and (b) L. er. backgrounds. The experiment included a comparison of native (N) and autoclaved (A) media. N = 12 per experimental repeat.
© Copyright Policy
Related In: Results  -  Collection

License
Show All Figures
getmorefigures.php?uid=PMC4835059&req=5

pone.0153625.g001: Establishment of Arabidopsis seedlings on peat-based and peat-free growing media.The proportion of seedlings that continued to produce leaves after transfer from sterile culture to growing media was determined in two experimental repeats for (a) Col-0 and (b) L. er. backgrounds. The experiment included a comparison of native (N) and autoclaved (A) media. N = 12 per experimental repeat.
Mentions: A very high proportion of seedlings established successfully on all growing media, following transfer from agar, except for autoclaved Westland media and domestic compost (Fig 1A and 1B). In one experimental repeat, very few seedlings established successfully in autoclaved Westland media due to powdery mildew within the compost, whereas seedlings established well when this media was infection-free. In the absence of infection, there was also variability in seedling establishment when domestic compost was used (Fig 1A and 1B). This could be associated with batch-to-batch heterogeneity of this medium compared with commercial growing media. In Sylvamix, Col-0 seedling establishment was similar to the Levington control medium, but L. er. seedlings had reduced establishment frequency in both trials (Fig 1B). For both backgrounds, seedlings established less well in domestic compost, with fewer than half of seedlings surviving in one experimental repeat and less than 100% establishment in the other repeat (Fig 1A and 1B).

Bottom Line: Moreover, peat extraction reduces peatland biodiversity and releases stored carbon and methane into the atmosphere.Arabidopsis biomass accumulation and seed yield were reduced by cultivation on several types of peat-free growing media.Overall, we conclude that Arabidopsis performs best when cultivated on peat-based growing media because seed yield was almost always reduced when peat-free media were used.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: School of Biological Sciences, University of Bristol, Bristol Life Sciences Building, 24 Tyndall Avenue, Bristol BS8 1TQ, United Kingdom.

ABSTRACT
Experimental research involving Arabidopsis thaliana often involves the quantification of phenotypic traits during cultivation on compost or other growing media. Many commercially-available growing media contain peat, but peat extraction is not sustainable due to its very slow rate of formation. Moreover, peat extraction reduces peatland biodiversity and releases stored carbon and methane into the atmosphere. Here, we compared the experimental performance of Arabidopsis on peat-based and several types of commercially-available peat-free growing media (variously formed from coir, composted bark, wood-fibre, and domestic compost), to provide guidance for reducing peat use in plant sciences research with Arabidopsis. Arabidopsis biomass accumulation and seed yield were reduced by cultivation on several types of peat-free growing media. Arabidopsis performed extremely poorly on coir alone, presumably because this medium was completely nitrate-free. Some peat-free growing media were more susceptible to fungal contamination. We found that autoclaving of control (peat-based) growing media had no effect upon any physiological parameters that we examined, compared with non-autoclaved control growing media, under our experimental conditions. Overall, we conclude that Arabidopsis performs best when cultivated on peat-based growing media because seed yield was almost always reduced when peat-free media were used. This may be because standard laboratory protocols and growth conditions for Arabidopsis are optimized for peat-based media. However, during the vegetative growth phase several phenotypic traits were comparable between plants cultivated on peat-based and some peat-free media, suggesting that under certain circumstances peat-free media can be suitable for phenotypic analysis of Arabidopsis.

No MeSH data available.


Related in: MedlinePlus