Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Artificial light quality affects herbivore preference for seedlings

Date:
June 22, 2011
Source:
American Society for Horticultural Science
Summary:
Researchers evaluated the preference of adult sweet potato whitefly to cucumber seedlings grown under fluorescent lamps or metal-halide lamps that provided a spectrum similar to that of natural light. They observed significantly fewer whitefly adults on the fluorescent cucumber treated seedlings than on the metal-halide treated seedlings 24 hours after release. The scientists recommended that growers consider light quality when selecting light sources for transplant production.

In horticultural production, growers often depend on systems that use artificial light to produce high-quality transplants. Although the systems are efficient, fluorescent lamps can produce plants with shorter shoots than those grown under natural light. Studies have indicated that this reduced shoot elongation is due to the high red:far red ratio of typical commercial fluorescent lamps, which emit little far red irradiation.

Related Articles


In natural environments a reduction in the red:far red (R:FR) ratio resulting from the absorption of red light by neighboring vegetation increases shoot elongation and leaf expansion and reduces leaf thickness and chlorophyll content. This morphologic response, called "shade avoidance," reduces plant resistance to herbivores. Observing this phenomenon, scientists questioned whether illumination by fluorescent lamps with higher-than-natural R:FR ratio could lessen plants' attractiveness to herbivores, thus reducing the need for pesticides at transplant.

Researchers in Japan tested the hypothesis with experiments that evaluated the preference of adult sweetpotato whitefly to cucumber seedlings grown under commercial fluorescent lamps or under metal-halide lamps that provided a spectrum similar to that of natural light. The results were published in HortTechnology.

Cucumber seedlings (Cucumis sativus) were grown under fluorescent lamps (FL) or under metal-halide lamps (ML) in a 12/12-hour light/dark cycle. The red:far red (R:FR) ratio of FL was 7.0 and that of ML was 1.2. Pairs of cucumber seedlings, one grown under FLs and the other under MLs, were then placed in cages and about 100 sweetpotato whitefly adults (Bemisia tabaci biotype B) were released. "There were significantly fewer whitefly adults on the cucumber seedlings grown under fluorescent lamps (36%) than on those grown under metal-halide lamps (64%) 24 hours after release," reported corresponding author Toshio Shibuya. "Additionally, FL cucumber seedlings had higher chlorophyll content and thicker leaves than ML seedlings."

"From these results, we concluded that the lower attractiveness of FL cucumber seedlings to adult sweetpotato whiteflies was probably due to changes in leaf morphologic characteristics resulting from high R:FR light of FL. The plants with lower attractiveness are possibly more resistant to herbivores," said Shibuya.

The scientists noted that growers must consider the interaction of other environmental factors such as air moisture in order to apply the results to horticultural production. They added that experiments designed to measure adult sweetpotato whitefly landing response in a no-choice situation would be necessary to further evaluate the light technology.

"The fact that light quality affects the plant attractiveness to herbivores should be considered in selecting light sources for transplant production under artificial light," concluded the researchers.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by American Society for Horticultural Science. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Toshio Shibuya, Junki Komuro, Norio Hirai, Yoshiko Sakamoto, Ryosuke Endo and Yoshiaki Kitaya. Preference of Sweetpotato Whitefly Adults to Cucumber Seedlings Grown under Two Different Light Sources. HortTechnology, 2010 20: 873-876 [link]

Cite This Page:

American Society for Horticultural Science. "Artificial light quality affects herbivore preference for seedlings." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 22 June 2011. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/06/110622135221.htm>.
American Society for Horticultural Science. (2011, June 22). Artificial light quality affects herbivore preference for seedlings. ScienceDaily. Retrieved October 24, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/06/110622135221.htm
American Society for Horticultural Science. "Artificial light quality affects herbivore preference for seedlings." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/06/110622135221.htm (accessed October 24, 2014).

Share This



More Plants & Animals News

Friday, October 24, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Deep Sea 'mushroom' Could Be Early Branch on Tree of Life

Deep Sea 'mushroom' Could Be Early Branch on Tree of Life

Reuters - Innovations Video Online (Oct. 24, 2014) Miniature deep sea animals discovered off the Australian coast almost three decades ago are puzzling scientists, who say the organisms have proved impossible to categorise. Academics at the Natural History of Denmark have appealed to the world scientific community for help, saying that further information on Dendrogramma enigmatica and Dendrogramma discoides could answer key evolutionary questions. Jim Drury has more. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Black Bear Cub Goes Sunday Shopping

Black Bear Cub Goes Sunday Shopping

Reuters - Light News Video Online (Oct. 23, 2014) Price check on honey? Bear cub startles Oregon drugstore shoppers. Rough Cut (no reporter narration). Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Dances With Wolves in China's Wild West

Dances With Wolves in China's Wild West

AFP (Oct. 23, 2014) One man is on a mission to boost the population of wolves in China's violence-wracked far west. The animal - symbol of the Uighur minority there - is under threat with a massive human resettlement program in the region. Duration: 00:41 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Breakfast Debate: To Eat Or Not To Eat?

Breakfast Debate: To Eat Or Not To Eat?

Newsy (Oct. 23, 2014) Conflicting studies published in the same week re-ignited the debate over whether we should be eating breakfast. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Plants & Animals

Earth & Climate

Fossils & Ruins

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins