Development of reliable techniques for the propagation of Persoonia and Conospermum

Summary of final report on the Australian Flora Foundation funded project:

Fiona Perry and Steven Trueman
School of Botany, La Trobe University

Grant Details   Final Report

Lack of knowledge of the propagation requirements of many Australian native plants has limited their development as cut flowers or ornamental species. The propagation requirements of Conospermum mitchellii were examined, focussing on the effects of auxin treatment, air and root zone temperatures and cutting type (softwood, semi-hardwood or hardwood) on the percentage rooting and death of stem cuttings. Anatomical studies were carried out to determine whether the stem anatomy of C. mitchellii influences rooting ability. Preliminary investigations were made of the effects of auxin treatment and air temperature on the rooting and death of Conospermum patens and Persoonia pinifolia. Indole-butyric acid (IBA) was found to be the most effective auxin in stimulating rooting of cuttings of all three species, while naphthalene acetic acid (NAA) had an adverse effect on cutting survival of the two Conospermum species. Softwood cuttings gave the highest rooting percentage, and the use of root zone heating was found to be beneficial for propagation of C. mitchellii.