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Pulsed electromagnetic fields effect in oregano rooting and vegetative propagation: A potential new organic method

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Many types of magnetic fields have already been investigated in order to find new methods to enhance plant growth. This study reports the positive effect of pulsed electromagnetic field on the main root characteristics (fresh weight, dry weight, root surface and length) of unrooted oregano stem cuttings. For oregano, vegetative propagation is commonly used, with rooted or unrooted stem cuttings, because seed propagation is not suggested for commercial cultivation. Oregano seeds are very small and, thus, difficult to handle. Vegetative reproduction in organic cultivation faces the ethical problem of the use of hormones to induce the rooting process in propagation beds. The purpose of this study was to determine if magnetic field can replace hormones in plant propagation and what the results of the combination of both magnetic field and hormones would be. Two types of stem cuttings were used (apical and middle) and the experiment was established in two different seasons (spring and autumn). The findings showed that magnetic field alone stimulates the rooting process in plant material, with results similar to or even statistically significantly better than those obtained using hormones. However, the combination of magnetic field and hormones resulted in measurements statistically significantly lower than with magnetic field alone. Such methods can potentially be useful for plant materials growers, providing better oregano seedlings, especially in organic farming, where chemical compounds are forbidden.

Keywords: Magnetic field; Origanum vulgare L; organic; root growth; rooting hormones; stem cuttings

Document Type: Research Article


Affiliations: 1: Department of Crop Science,Agricultural University of Athens, Greece 2: Open University of Cyprus, Nicosia, Cyprus 3: Department of Agriculture Crop Production and Rural Environment,University of Thessaly, N. Ionia, Magnisia, Greece

Publication date: January 1, 2012

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