Article ID: UTD-350
Characteristics and inheritance of rhizome coloration in the red rhizome lotus (Nelumbo nucifera) ‘Tomohiro’ were investigated to achieve stable production and breeding of red rhizome cultivars. Rhizome coloration proceeded from the basal internodes to distal ones during the growing stage, and coloration of enlarged distal rhizomes was completed in October. No individuals with both red and white rhizomes in one plant were found, and there were no rhizomes with a mottled pattern or an intermediate color between red and white. The coloration of the skin and flesh was synchronized in red rhizome plants. It was therefore estimated that the skin and flesh coloration of rhizomes was controlled by the same gene. Rhizomes of all selfed plants of ‘Tomohiro’ and white rhizome cultivars were red and white, respectively, and all F1 plants generated by crossing ‘Tomohiro’ and white rhizome cultivars were white. Rhizome color in F2 plants generated by self-pollination of F1 plants divided into white and red individuals with a 3:1 ratio. These results suggested that red rhizome coloration is governed by a single locus, designated RHIZOME COLOR (RHC), with dominant white (Rhc) and recessive red (rhc) coloration alleles.