The explant storage conditions effect and the optimization of the in vitro-corms production protocol of saffron (Crocus sativus L.)

S. Soukrat, M. Lage, C. Alfaiz, Y. Salwee, F.A. Nehvi, A. Abousalim, O. Benlhabib
Saffron is a sterile geophyte that has been growing since the earlier times in the south-west of the Moroccan high Atlas Mountains. Its propagation by corms constitutes a constraint to the extension of its cultivation because of its low multiplication rate, disease problems, and heterogeneity of the produced propagating material the corms. In vitro propagation of saffron is an appropriate alternative for mass multiplication of selected plant material. Noticeably, different propagation protocols documented so far are season and corm phenological stage dependent. The main objectives of the present study were to maintain corms dormancy, viability and upgrade the commercial micropropagation protocol of saffron. At first, the study of the effect of the storage duration of dormant corms at 35°C (1, 4, 9 and 14 months) on the length of the in vitro initiation phase permitted to reduce this stage to 3 weeks after at least 4 months corms storage period, as compared to 8 weeks as previously reported by other authors and the no storage control. The results also showed that corms storage at 35°C maintained the explants dormancy and viability during 14 months of the experiment and ensured round the year initiation of new in vitro corms regardless of the season and the species growth stage. With regard to the micropropagation protocol, improvement focused on initiation, budding, multiplication, establishment and magnification of micro-corms. All the four phases were undertaken on Murashige and Skoog basal media which differ in their hormonal, sugar and growth retardant (CCC) contents and the length of each of the phase. The produced in vitro corms over 2 g were planted in a peat substrate during 4 weeks to sprout before they were successfully transplanted in the open field.
Soukrat, S., Lage, M., Alfaiz, C., Salwee, Y., Nehvi, F.A., Abousalim, A. and Benlhabib, O. (2020). The explant storage conditions effect and the optimization of the in vitro-corms production protocol of saffron (Crocus sativus L.). Acta Hortic. 1287, 455-462
DOI: 10.17660/ActaHortic.2020.1287.58
https://doi.org/10.17660/ActaHortic.2020.1287.58
Crocus sativus L., culture media, micropropagation phases, saffron, storage conditions
English

Acta Horticulturae