Fengtong Li, Jianzhong Bao, Ye Sun, Chungui Liu, Hui Ma, Tian Zhang, Xiulan Chen


A better understanding of embryo development would provide insights into seed quality and subsequent germination events in the interspecific hybridization of Cymbidium faberi ‘Jiepeimei’ × C. sinense ‘Qijianheimo’. At the mature stage, 26.1% of the ovules were abnormal. Most of the hybrid embryos could develop normally. Abortions mainly occurred at the zygote (9.5%) and 2-4-celled embryo (15.1%) stages. No germination was observed at 90 and 105 days after pollination (DAP), when the embryo was at the early globular stage, with abundant organelles but no storage materials. During 110-130 DAP, the globular embryo was formed and the starch grains began to accumulate in plastids. The hybrid seeds collected at 120 DAP showed initiation of germination. Germination significantly increased at 135 DAP and was maximal at 150 DAP, during which period the hybrid embryos developed into the late globular stage. The storage materials, i.e. lipid and protein bodies, began to accumulate and the filamentary structures derived from suspensor cells still persisted. After the seeds matured (160 DAP), the germination percentage declined sharply. Safranin staining revealed that the outer seed coat was totally cuticularized and the inner seed coat appeared as a cuticle layer enclosing the embryo proper tightly, which may be the main factor inhibiting the subsequent germination of hybrid seeds. In conclusion, 150 DAP should be the opportune time for the in vitro germination of C. faberi ‘Jiepeimei’ × C. sinense ‘Qijianheimo’ hybrid seeds.


Key words: C. faberi × C. sinense; embryo development; in vitro; interspecific hybridization; seed germination


Received: September 1, 2015; Revised: September 24, 2015; Accepted: September 25, 2015; Published online: April 27, 2016

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