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Sunday, May 24, 2015

PROTOPLASTS IN PLANT TISSUE

Banana protoplasts

Protoplasts are naked cells that lack cell walls (Figure above). They are spherical with a plasmolysed cell content and are contained within a plasmalemma. In principle, each individual protoplast can reform a cell wall, and later initiate either a callus through sustained divisions, or an embryo, defined as a somatic embryo. In banana they are obtained from in vivo tissues or in vitro cultures. As early as 1902, a scientist known as Haberlandt has stated that individual nucleated plant cells could convert into entire plants, either directly or through a callus stage. This phenomenon is termed 'totipotency' and denotes the recovery of a whole organism from a single cell, and is also applicable to protoplasts. In theory all cells are totipotent, but in practice it depends on the past cellular environment. Usually the morphogenetic competence is retained at the unicellular stage that corresponds to a protoplast. However since protoplasts are not exposed to the stabilizing and inductive influence from neighbouring cells, they may have lost their plant regeneration capacity. In fact, factors such as the genotype or species of the manipulated plant, and the ontogenetic state of the explant source, exert a powerful effect on the regeneration potential of protoplasts. Consequently the development of appropriate in vitro conditions for protoplast regeneration is complicated. Notwithstanding this, successful efforts have been made in isolation, cultivation and regeneration of protoplasts, since Nickell and Torrey pointed out their merit for crop improvement.
 
 

Various tissues and an increasing number of plant species and genotypes have been successfully used in protoplast culture, but so far sufficient quantities of protoplasts for practical applications are not routinely met. While the value for agriculture of protoplasts still needs to be demonstrated, they are an invaluable tool for studies on permeability of ions and solutes, photosynthesis, phytohormones, phytochrome, and maintenance of totipotency. Moreover, protoplasts are useful for the uptake of foreign genetic material and to produce somatic hybrids through protoplast fusion. In addition, protoplasts are an excellent system for studies on cell genetics and even for plant virology. These studies rely on isolated, clean and healthy protoplasts, which requires the appropriate choice of osmoticum, hydrolysing enzymatic solution, and pretreatment of the donor explant either in vivo or in vitro. This involves the right choice of explant age, cold treatment, phytohormone pretreatment, light intensity or photoperiod, and subculture rhythm, which affects both the internal metabolic status of the cells and cell-wall composition. Prior to cultivation isolated protoplasts need to be freed from enzymatic remains and debris, which are considered to be toxic. Culture in or on solid medium is considered to be more advantageous than in liquid medium because the development of a single protoplast into a colony can be followed up much better. For development, different factors such as medium composition are crucial, especially the nature and quantity of growth hormones. Other important factors are the physical environment, plating density, and embedding conditions or the use of feeder layers, which all contribute in one way or another to cell-wall regeneration and cell division. Once cell divisions start, the level of auxin(s), as well as the colony density, usually need to be reduced to avoid overcrowding. This is done by subculturing, which gives the additional benefit that an adequate nutrient supply is maintained. Finally, for rooting, plants are usually transferred to cytokinin-free medium, possibly containing some auxin, and exposed to high light intensities, usually in illuminated plant growth chambers. During recent decades, plant biology workers have recognised the potential of protoplasts in many experimental systems, since an efficient enzymatic method for protoplast isolation was first established. Thanks.
 
By,
M Anem,
Senior Agronomist,
Private J-Plant Tec, Air Hitam,
Johor, Malaysia.
(8 Rejab 1436H)

Saturday, May 16, 2015

MICROPROPAGATION OF BANANAS



MICROPROPAGATION OF BANANAS is considered a new technology introduced in banana industry. The scientist has reported in vitro culture of banana. Shoot-tip culture in combination with heat therapy was successfully used to produce virus-free banana plants as well as for mutation induction. Several reviews have been written on the in vitro culture techniques for different applications. The shoot-tip meristem culture technique is used routinely for large-scale propagation of bananas in Malaysia. Currently, commercial production of micro-propagated banana plants in Malaysia is estimated at around 1.3 million. The commercial micro propagation protocol has been successfully modified to bring soma-clonal variation down to 0.5%. There are several advantages of tissue culture-derived banana plants, such as vigorous growth, high survival rate, uniformity, and high flowering rate (90% of plants flower compared with 59% of plants produced from suckers). This shortens the harvesting period by about 2 months. Reduction in the cost of micro-propagation has been achieved by using locally made culture containers, and by replacing tissue-culture grade sucrose with commercial cane sugar, and Gelrite with locally available agar. We also found that the multiplication rate could be enhanced by 33% by using liquid or semi-liquid media instead of solid medium. We could also achieve rooting by placing plantlets in a hydroponic system in the greenhouse; the resulting rooted plantlets needed a shorter period of hardening. Other cost reduction strategies particularly the use of sunlight, should be pursued to reduce the current production cost further.



EXPLOITATION OF SOMACLONAL VARIATION

The occurrence of off-type plants, commonly known as soma-clonal variants is relatively common in in vitro plants. Usually, most of the soma-clones are undesirable from agronomic point of view. Nevertheless, the phenomenon is useful in generating genetic variation for banana improvement with continuous selection of soma-clones for earliness from tissue culture-derived commercial plantings of Pisang Berangan, the proportion of plants showing earliness in flowering increased gradually from 16% to over 60% at 8 months of planting. This means that at about 11 months after planting, 66% plants were ready for harvest compared with 4% for sucker material and 16% for unselected tissue-cultured plants. Secand by using tissue-culture-derived plants, 27% of Pisang Rastali (one clone) survived for more than 3 years in the Fusarium wilt-infested field, while all other clones planted at the same time had succumbed to the disease. Dissection showed the symptoms of Fusarium infection at the base of the corm tissue. The vascular discoloration was arrested 20-30 cm above the base. The continuous selection of tolerant plants has resulted in the release of a Fusarium wilt-tolerant clone of Pisang Rastali called Mutiara. This report obtained from few result from lab and commercial lab producing planting material in banana industry.
By,
M Anem,
Senior Agronomist,
Putrajaya
Malaysia.
(May 2015)

Tuesday, April 28, 2015

BANANA - THE CHALLANGE IN MALAYSIA

BANANA (Musa spp) are grown in 122 countries, with a cultivated area of 3.8 million hectares and a total production of 56.4 million metric tonnes. In Malaysia, banana is the second most widely cultivated fruit, covering about 26,000 ha with a total production of 530,000 metric tonnes. About 50% of the banana growing land is cultivated with Pisang Berangan and the Cavendish type, and the remaining popular cultivars are Pisang Mas, Pisang Rastali, Pisang Raja, Pisang Awak, Pisang Abu, Pisang Nangka and Pisang Tanduk. Bananas are cultivated for local consumption by smallholders, and only about 12% of the total production is exported, mainly to Singapore, Brunei, Hong Kong and the Middle East. However, banana production in Malaysia has decreased because of an increasing threat of diseases (particularly Fusarium wilt), high labour costs and marketing issues.The present research program was initiated with the objective of improving the important dessert bananas in Malaysia. This includes production of resistance or tolerance to Fusarium wilt or Panama disease, short plant stature, early fruiting, and high bunch weight. Banana cultivars are vegetatively propagated clones and are generally triploids and sterile. Tissue culture techniques have been exploited for (a) propagation of selected lines or natural variants; (b) generation of somaclones; (c) production of meristem pieces for in vitro mutagenesis and polyploidy induction; and (d) zygotic embryo culture to generate seed progenies for genetic and molecular studies.
 
Banana is the second most commonly grown fruit crop in Malaysia. Overall banana production has decreased due to the increasing threat of Fusarium wilt disease, high labour costs and marketing issues. This program was initiated to improve banana cultivars by induced mutations and biotechnology, especially to produce mutant varieties with improved traits such as Fusarium tolerance, short stature plants, early fruiting and high bunch weight. Banana shoot-tip cultures were most suitable for micropropagation for large-scale plant production. Commercial companies have adopted this method, and they produce 1.3 million plants annually, with approximately 0.5% somaclonal variation. However, the cost of production of in vitro plants could be reduced by low-cost micropropagation. Somaclonal variation has been effective in banana for the selection of useful somaclones, e.g. early flowering and tolerance to Fusarium wilt. In Novaria, an early flowering mutant, 7% of the plants survived in the Fusarium 'hot spot' for 3 years. Consequently, somaclonal variation is being used as a strategy to select useful mutants. Since bananas are mostly sterile polyploids, highly heterozygous, and propagated vegetatively, genetic improvement by cross-breeding is an insurmountable task. On the other hand, mutation techniques are highly suitable for banana improvement. Pisang Berrangan (AAA), a popular dessert banana variety, was gamma-irradiated at several dosages (20-60 Gy). The highest percentage of variants, such as changes in leaf coloration and leaf texture, leaf deformation, stunted growth etc., was obtained with 45 Gy treatment. The double-tray system was developed for the selection of mutants tolerant to Fusarium wilt. Among selected plants showing tolerance to Fusarium wilt, none survived field evaluation under Fusarium 'hot spot' conditions. Molecular characterization with RAPD of resistant and susceptible banana types showed random variation for different markers. However, four primers showed bands specific to either resistant or susceptible seed progenies, but could not provide information on the degree of co-dominance. That's all for this article... to be continue.




By
M Anem,
Senior Agronomist,
Kg Sedilii Besar Banana Group Farming,
Sedili, Kota Tinggi,
Johor, Malaysia.

(2 Rejab 1436H)

Saturday, April 25, 2015

BANANA BUSINESS STAYS BOUNTIFUL IN MALAYSIA

BANANA (Musa spp) increase local demand in Malaysia for considered as one of the world’s most popular fruits remains robust. Malaysians love bananas fresh or cooked. Bananas fried in batter or pisang goreng, are one of the most liked local snacks enjoyed by many during tea breaks. Ripe bananas can also be made into sweet fritters called 'jemput-jemput' in Johor and 'cekodok' in Kedah, Penang and Perlis. Johor is also famous for kerepek pisang (banana chips) made from green bananas. The fruit is believed to have originated from India where it is mentioned in the Buddhist Pali writings dating back to the sixth century BCE and India is the world’s biggest producer of bananas. The name “banana” is African and comes from the Arabic word banan meaning finger and was carried to the New World by Portuguese slave traders. Most of the world’s edible bananas are from the species Musa acuminata or the naturally occurring hybrid between Musa acuminate and Musa balbisiana. From my observation as senior Agronomist, there are about 1,000 types of bananas sweet, savoury, round, bent, straight, green, yellow, pink, silvery, even spotted and striped.



From statistic release by Department of Agriculture, although there are no official statistics on how many bananas are sold in the country annually, demand for the fruit is always there. A company named Kulim Sdn Bhd said the company is among the pioneers to start the large-scale cultivation of Cavendish bananas in Malaysia in 1997, under its unit Kulim Montel Farm (KMF). Montel is the company’s registered trademark and the brand name for its Cavendish bananas sold domestically and in overseas markets. Kulim Bhd is one of Johor Corp’s prize assets, and has about 40,000ha of oil palm plantations in Johor. Initially, bananas were planted at the Ulu Tiram Estate as a single or mono crop, but in 1997, the operations were moved to the Tereh Selatan Estate in Kluang, Johor. “Here (in Kluang), we decided to intercrop the bananas with the newly-planted oil palms for three years to fully utilise our planting areas in the estates,’’ said Nasharuddin. He said, after three years, the banana plants have to make way for the oil palms as having them side by side would create “competition among themselves to get the 
best nutrients” from the soils.


In 2007  KMF’s operations were moved to Basir Ismail Estate (formerly known as Nam Heng Estate) in Kota Tinggi, Johor. Presently, the banana plantation occupies about 579.69ha in the 3,700ha estate. KMF manager Omar Rohani said plans are already in the pipeline to open new areas for the cultivation of bananas in the Basir Ismail, REM and Renggam Estates starting from this year until 2017. He said 265ha would be opened this year in the estates to be followed by 263ha (2014), 222ha (2015), 252ha (2016) and 258ha in 2017. “This will put us in a better position to capture the growing demand for Cavendish bananas in the domestic market,’’ said Omar. He said the annual production of bananas at the Basir Ismail and REM Estates had increased steadily, beginning with 847 tonnes in 2008 and 2,309 tonnes in 2009. Production in 2010 however, went down to 1,905 tonnes. The drop was due to the outbreak of diseases but went up again to 3,055 tonnes in 2011. Last year, the figure stood at 6,512 tonnes and for this year, the forecast is for 6,512 tonnes. Omar said, in 2009 the company recorded RM3.4mil in sales from Montel Cavendish bananas. This dropped to RM2.4mil in 2010. In 2011. the figure went up to RM3.6mil, and last year it was at RM8.1mil. “We are looking at making RM10.7mil in sales this year and we are optimistic of reaching the target based on the increase in areas planted with bananas,’’ he said.

KMF’s Montel Cavendish bananas are marketed by Kulim Bhd’s subsidiary JTP Trading Sdn Bhd via trading agents and supplied to a hypermarket chain. KMF was awarded the Malaysian Good Farming Practice certification from the Agricultural Department on July 15, 2010, and Malaysia’s Best certification on June 23, 2011. Asked why the company decided to plant Cavendish bananas imported from the Philippines, instead of existing varieties grown in the country, Omar said this is due to commercial reasons. “In fact, we had a choice of either getting the Cavendish from Brazil or the Philippines when we first started our banana cultivation, but decided to settle for the latter,’’ he said. Omar said customers love the Philippines’ Cavendish bananas as they were “slimmer and sexier” as well as sweeter while those from Brazil’s are “rather fat” and less sweet. He said, unlike local varieties such as pisang berangan, pisang emas, rastali or pisang tanduk, the Cavendish has higher yields of 35 tonnes per hectare for a three-year planting cycle against 20 tonnes from local species for two years.

Omar said the growth patterns also differed in first year, with Cavendish bananas producing medium-sized fruits, followed by large-sized in the second-year and extra large in the third year. “However, local species will produce large-sized fruits in the first year and started shrinking in the second or the final year of the harvesting cycle,’’ he said. Omar said the Philippines’ Cavendish bananas also have better immune systems against banana-related diseases such as fusarium (root disease) and sigatoka (leaf disease). He said both diseases are of foreign origins and many banana growers in Johor, especially small holders planting local varieties, suffered major losses during outbreaks in recent years. “Even now, there are no cures or remedies and at the rate of the diseases spreads to other parts of the country, our local banana species will be totally wiped out within the next five years,’’ said Omar.

He said when the outbreaks started about three or four years ago, it only happened in Johor, but now it has started to spread to other states including Perak and Selangor. Omar said, on the other hand, the Philippines, well known for its large Cavendish bananas plantations, was spared the outbreak which hit Malaysia and Indonesia. He said apart from the diseases, another issue facing a company like KMF, is labour shortages as banana cultivation is labour-intensive.
Omar said much of the work on the plantations has to be done manually but locals are not interested, so KMF has no choice but to bring in foreign labour. “One major issue facing local banana gro-wers is the flooding of cheap bananas from the Philippines in the domestic market, which is able to enter the country illegally,’’ he said. Omar cautioned that, if the problem is not solved immediately, Malaysian banana planters, especially small holders, would suffer losses or have to close shop.

Source: The STAR News/com/my.

By,
M Anem
Senior Agronomist,
Room 303, MAYRES Hotel,
Kota Tinggi, Johor BAhru,
Johor, Malaysia.
(3 Rejab 1436H)


Sunday, February 22, 2015

ERVINIA PAPAYAE ON PAPAYA


ERWINIA PAPAYAE IS THE CAUSAL ORGANISM FOR PAPAYA DIEBACK SYMPTOMS Bacterial Crown Rot disease (Erwinia papayae) is known to be present in Dominica, Grenada, Guadeloupe, Indonesia and Malaysia. The first report of this disease in S.E. Asia was in Java in (von Rant, 1931). E. papayae was also reported as causing bacterial canker of papaya in the Caribbean by Gardan et al. (2004). Maktar et.al (2008) confirmed that E. papayae is responsible for the papaya dieback symptoms occurred in Malaysia. Early symptoms included yellowing and necrosis along leaf edges followed by watersoaked areas on the bases of leaf stalks, crowns  and along leaf mid-ribs. Fruit symptoms included dark spots on the skin and water-soaked flesh . Later, necrotic and water-soaked areas developed on stems and spread to the internal tissues, followed by secondary fungal infections. In advanced stages bending of watersoaked leaf stalk occurs, leading to dieback, and death of trees . Early detection of the disease symptoms and destroying the affected plants seems to be the best control strategies at the moment.  Thanks.

By,
M Anem,
Senior Agronomist,
DOA, Kuala Lumpur,
Malaysia.

Sunday, January 11, 2015

RICE HUSKS - HOW IMPORTANT

RICE HUSKS is a waste or by-product from processing agricultural products, rice mills to take grain as one of the topic to discuss today. Many urban people do not famililiar with the processing of padi husk during the milling for paddy. For them it’s such as a hard layer covering kariopsis consisting of two hemispheres called lemma and interlocked; a palea where will separate the chaff from the grain of rice. For the great capacity a machine, a grindstone capable of producing rice husk 10-20 tons of rice husk per day. The rice husk can be categorized as of biomass that can be used as raw materials for various needs industry, forage and energy or fuel. From the process of grinding grain usually acquired about 20-30 %, husk bran between 8- 12 % and milled rice between 50-63,5 % of initial weighting grain. In many observation done by agronomist, a rice husk has long around 8-10 mm, in width 2 mm, heavy 0.2 mm. Review the chemical composition, husk containing several chemical elements important such as the water level (9,02 %), Coarse proteins (3.0 %), Fats (1.2 %), Coarse fiber (35.7%), Ash (17.2 %), Basic carbohydrates (33.7 %). After certain processsing the chemical composition a rice husk (DTC-IPB) consists of Carbon substances (1.3 %), CharcoalHydrogen (1.5 %), Oxygen (33.6 %) and Silica (16.9%). This article ini "Anim Agriculture Technology" I would like to share ana article about the paddy husks.


 
The chemical composition as mention above so that  the rice husk could be used for a variety of purposes including used as a raw material for the chemical industry, especially chemical contents furfural that can be used as a raw material for the chemical industry. It also used as a raw material for building material industry chiefly of silica ( Sio2 ) that can be used to mix in portland cement making and as insulating material, husk-board and mix the red brick and industry. Other usage of this product are as an alternative fuel for the fossil fuel and energy source of heat on human activities, the cellulose high enough to provide the field and stable. The rice husk have bulk density 0,100 g/mls, the calorie between 3,300  - 3,600 of calories/ kg, with the heat conductivity 0.271 btu. The properties characteristic of a rice husk covering a heavy small around 122 pounds / m3, the ashes of the burning high temperature low melting point which ashes. Ashes of the burning ranging from 16-23 % with silica content senbesar 95 %. It is low because its melting point is alkaline and alkaline relatively high. Moisture (moisture content) in a generally biomasa higher than fossil fuels, however, the water vapor in the paddy rice is relatively small because the bran who dried up the process of grinding.


Volatile Ingredients of a rice husk is high, between 60-80 %, which fossil fuels is only 20 to 30 percent of the coal medium. Energy conversion produced more volatile substance derived from this compares with coals of fire (solid biomasa residue).To make use of husks easier, the rice husk is compressed into a form that can be simple not practical, and voluminous, are being charcoal husks and charred husks. Charcoal husks could easily be used as fuel for not smoking firebrands–at the calorie is quite high. The charred husks reports have a wider and more besides environment-friendly, as fuel the horticultural grown especially in a flowering plants. Most of Malaysian farmers does not fammiliar and bother about rice huska that cinsists for abaou 5% from total paddy dryweight. That's All Folk.

By,
M Anem,
Senior Agronomist,
Putrajaya, Malaysia.
(18 RabiulAwal 1436H)

Friday, January 2, 2015

HAPPY NEW YEAR 2015


HAPPY NEW YEAR 2015,

This "Anim Agriculture Technology" was first posted on 6 Jun 2010 with the title 'New Agriculture Blog". It was almost 4 years now with about 252 article posted all about agriculture technology. Among popular articles read by viewers this month are from the top 'Rain-shelter technology' followed by 'Guano - as organic fertilizer' , 'Chili in Malaysia', 'Coconut in Malaysia' and the fifth article are 'Growing banana in Malaysia'. The record shows that total viewrs until 31 December 2014 amounted for 220,427 mostly came form USA, Malaysia and UK, India and other ASEAN Countries. For all years of course the most popular article viewed are "Durian Clones in Malaysia" followed by 'Chillies in Malaysia". "Agriculture in Malaysia", 'Coffee in Malaysia" and "Agriculture in Malaysia". Average viewers monthly about 4,300 - 4,500.

I hope able to post more article in 2015. Happy New Year!.

By,
M Anem,
Senior Agronomist,
Putrajaya,
Malaysia.
(1 January 2015)