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Inducing Flowering of Four Spathiphyllum Cultivars
with Gibberellic Acid (GA3).
R. J. Henny and W. C. Foosheel
Univer iity- rf-Rl i44a-AS__
Agricultural Resea c1tid\/cuc f pr Apopka
AREC-A Research Report I
Previous reports (1, 2, 3, 4) hav hown 't Spat iphyllum can be
induced to flower with a single foliar spray of gibbere lic acid (GA ). One
potential barrier to use of GA3 bh:. ptht 1 h l ,r1 occurrence of
distorted blooms following treat merr 4-loms-p-rni ed by Spathiphyllum
'Clevelandii' (3) were distorted while a moderate number of S. 'Mauna Loa'
(1, 3) and S. 'Tasson' (4) flowers were malformed. No distorted flowers
were found on S. floribundum treated with GA (2). This study was conducted
to compare response of four commercial Spathfphyllum cultivars treated
simultaneously with GA3.
The cultivars tested included S. 'Tasson', S. 'Wallisii', S. 'Oueen
Amazonica' and S. 'Bennett'. Only S. 'Tasson' had been studied previously
(4). Twenty plants of each cultivar growing in 6 inch pots were obtained
from a commercial nursery in central Florida. Plants were placed in a
shaded greenhouse at 1500-2000 ft-c maximum daily light under natural
photoperiod in August 1984. A 250 ppm solution of GA3 was applied as a
single foliar spray to ten plants of each cultivar on August 15, 1984.
Control plants were not sprayed. Once flower buds were visible, plants were
checked weekly for inflorescences with open spathes.
At 8 weeks after treatment, there were visible flower buds, but no
inflorescences with open spadices. However, within 9 weeks after treatment,
100% of the treated S. 'Bennett' and S. 'Wallisii' plants had at least 1
open bloom while S. 'Tasson' and S. 'Queen Amazonica' had none (Table 1).
Spathiphyllum 'Tasson' and S. 'Queen Amazonica' had 100% of plants with at
least 1 open bloom at 13 weeks after treatment (Table 1). Average number of
blooms was 5.0, 4.6, 0.3 and 0.1 for S. 'Bennett', Wallisii, 'Tasson' and
'Queen Amazonica', respectively. All cultivars continued to open new blooms
weekly and at 14 weeks after treatment S. 'Bennett' averaged 13.6 flowers
per plant compared to 7.6, 5.8 and 5.5 for S. 'Wallisii', 'Tasson' and
'Queen Amazonica', respectively (Table 2). None of the untreated plants
showed any signs of flowering during the period of this experiment.
Results from this study showed that all four Spathiphyllum cultivars
flower readily following GA treatment. In addition, S. 'Bennett' and
'Wallisii' flowered at least 2 weeks earlier that S. 'Tasson' or 'Queen
Amazonica'. Spathiphyllum 'Bennett' also had good flower quality with a
minimum of distorted blooms, whereas S. 'Tasson' and 'Queen Amazonica' had a
moderate amount. In contrast, the majority of flowers produced by S.
'Wallisii' were abnormal in appearance.
1Associate Professor and Biologist, respectively. Agricultural Research
and Education Center, 2807 Binion Road, Apopka, FL 32703.
In summary, Spathiphyllum 'Bennett', 'Tasson' and 'Queen Amazonica'
appear to be acceptable cultivars for GA treatment to stimulate flowering.
Less floral distortions can be expected from S. 'Bennett' than the other 2
cultivars. Spathiphyllum 'Wallisii' did not seem to be a good candidate for
GA induced flowering due to a high percentage of distored blooms.
Differences in flowering time and flower quality between these cultivars
also indicate that genetic diversity exists in Spathiphyllum and may lead
to development of new hybrids that can be forced into bloom more quickly and
without floral abnormalities.
1. Henny, R. J. 1981. Promotion of flowering in Spathiphyllum 'Mauna Loa'
with gibberellic acid. HortScience 16:554-555.
2. Henny, R. J. 1981. Inducing flowering of Spathiphyllum floribundum
(Linden & Andre) N.E. Br. with gibberellic acid (GA3). Proc. Fla. State
Hort. Soc. 94:111-112.
3. Henny, R. J. and E. M. Rasmussen. 1981. Inducing flowering of
Spathiphyllum with gibberellic acid (GA3). Foliage Digest 4:7-9.
4. Henny, R. J. and W. C. Fooshee. 1984. Flowering of Spathiphyllum
'Tasson' following GA3 treatment. Foliage Digest 7(11):1-2.
Table 1. Percentage of plants from four Spathiphyllum cultivars with at
least 1 open inflorescence following treatment with 250 ppm GA3 on
August 13, 1984.
Weeks after treatment
Cultivar 8 9 10 11 12 13
'Bennett' 0 100 100 100 100 100
'Wallisii' 0 100 100 100 100 100
'Tasson' 0 0 20 80 90 100
'Queen Amazonica' 0 0 10 50 90 100
Z10 plants per cultivar.
Table 2. Average number and quality of inflorescences produced after
treatment of four Spathiphyllum cultivars with a single 250 ppm
foliar spray of GA3 on August 13, 1984.
Weeks after treatment Average
Cultivar 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 quality
'Bennett' 0 1.4 5.0 7.7 8.8 11.0 13.6 15.0 Good
'Wallisii' 0 1.9 4.6 5.8 5.9 6.8 7.6 9.0 Poor
'Tasson' 0 0 0.3 1.7 3.0 5.1 5.8 7.1 Moderate
Amazonica' 0 0 0.1 0.9 1.8 3.9 5.5 7.1 Moderate
Z10 plants per cultivar. Untreated plants did not flower during this same
period and that data has been omitted from the table.