2008 Volume 46 Issue 3 Pages 155-162
Sensitivity to ethylene of cut snapdragon (Antirrhinum majus L. cv. Yellow Butterfly) flowers and the effects of pulse treatments with either silver thiosulfate complex (STS), sucrose or in combination on vase life were investigated. Exposure to ethylene at 2 and 10 μL L−1 for 48 h induced abscission of petals in cut flower spikes, suggesting that snapdragon flowers are moderately sensitive to ethylene. Cut snapdragon spikes were treated with 50, 75, 100 and 125 g L−1 sucrose with or without 0.2 mM STS for 24 h. Treatment with STS alone slightly extended the vase life of cut flowers, but treatment with sucrose alone extended the vase life of cut flowers only with increasing concentration of sucrose up to 100 g L−1. Treatment with STS plus sucrose was more effective in promoting floret opening and extending vase life than that with sucrose alone at all sucrose concentrations tested. The size of florets opened after harvest was greater for treatment with sucrose alone or STS plus sucrose treatments than in control or STS alone treatments. Concentrations of aurones, pigments responsible for yellow color in the petals, were higher for treatment with sucrose or STS plus sucrose than in control or STS alone treatments. Soluble carbohydrate concentration in the petals was highest for treatment with sucrose, followed by STS plus sucrose, whereas it was lowest in STS treatment. These findings suggest that pulse treatment with STS plus sucrose is the most effective for extending vase life of cut snapdragon flowers and for improving pigmentation.