Botanic Gardens Trust, Sydney, Australia

Wollemi Pine research - propagation

Studies at the Australian Botanic Garden Mount Annan began with developing propagation techniques to establish a collection of plants that reflected the trees growing in the wild. Cuttings of each accessible tree growing in the wild were used in a number of experiments to achieve successful root growth.

Glasshouse experiments

Research on seed germination and early seedling growth has shown why the Wollemi Pine has survived for so long in its harsh natural habitat. Young seedlings are able to survive for years under low light and in very poor soils. The main trigger for growth of these seedlings appears to be increased light - research being conducted includes monitoring the population.

Current experiments on seedlings concentrate on how the Wollemi Pine respond to fertiliser, soil and potting mix, light and temperature.

The horticultural research project established a population for further research and material for commercialisation of mass cloned plants. The data obtained from this has already provided essential data for the commercial propagation of the Wollemi pine and the establishment of plants in the ground (see growing it).

Researchers

Patricia Meagher

Dr Cathy Offord (Australian Botanic Garden)

Carolyn Porter (Royal Botanic Gardens & Domain Trust)

Struck cuttings
Struck cuttings propagated from both upright and lateral material in adult and juvenile leaf phase (l->r: adult phase lateral, juvenile phase upright and juvenile phase lateral).