Effect of temperature on seed development in jojoba (Simmondsia chinensis (Link) Schneider). II. Wax content and composition

R. L. Dunstone, M. L. Tonnet, I. F. Wardlaw, A. Shani

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Jojoba plants were grown in large pots in temperature-controlled phytotron glasshouses. The flowers were hand-pollinated and the seeds were grown under a range of eight temperature regimens from 15/10 to 36/31µC (8/16 h; photoperiod 16 h). The concentration of wax in the seed was determined by nuclear magnetic resonance and the wax composition and the composition of the ethanolysis products of the wax were determined by gas chromatography. At 21/16µC the wax concentration increased with seed growth until the seed reached 75% of its mature weight and then stabilized at about 45%. The wax concentration in mature seeds was only slightly affected by temperature, except for the extreme treatments of 15/10 and 36/31µC where the concentration was reduced. The main effect of temperature on wax composition was the depression of the percentage of waxes with carbon chain lengths greater than 40 at temperatures over 30/25µC. This depression was associated with a reduction in the percentage of C22 and C24 fatty acids and alcohols. The effects of temperature will have to be taken into account by plant breeders selecting for high wax content or for a particular wax composition.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)693-700
Number of pages8
JournalAustralian Journal of Agricultural Research
Issue number5
StatePublished - 1 Jan 1984


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