The potential of inverted seed grafts for dwarfing and precocity in members of the sapotaceae grown in South Florida

Jeff Wasielewski, R. J. Campbell


A modified method of inverted seed grafting has been under investigation for its utility in reducing plant height and improving precocity in commercially important members of Sapotaceae in South Florida. Preliminary experiments conducted on canistel [Pouteria campechiana (Kunth) Baehni] using inverted seed grafts have shown a reduction in total plant height, increased branching and precocious flowering when compared to veneer and cleft grafts. Field testing of trees is currently underway. Initial experiments with mamey sapote [Pouteria sapota (Jacq.) H. Moore & Steam] have also shown a reduction in height and increased precocity. With mamey sapote, there is evidence that cultivar influences the long-term survival of plants propagated by this method. Trials with sapodilla [Manilkara zapota (L.) P. Royen] have recently begun. Results obtained from these preliminary experiments are incomplete, and the utility of this propagation method will only be determined following years of field evaluations and followup experiments. However, preliminary results do offer evidence of dwarfing and precocity that would be useful in these crops for commercial fruit production and in home garden use. This method may also have utility in other fruit crop species.

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Proc. Fla. State Hort. Soc.     ISSN 0886-7283

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