Preprint Article Version 1 Preserved in Portico This version is not peer-reviewed

Photoperiodic Response of in vitro Cannabis sativa Plants

Version 1 : Received: 1 September 2020 / Approved: 5 September 2020 / Online: 5 September 2020 (07:29:39 CEST)

A peer-reviewed article of this Preprint also exists.

Journal reference: HortScience 2020
DOI: 10.21273/HORTSCI15452-20


Most commercial Cannabis sativa L. (cannabis) genotypes are short-day plants and cultivators typically use a 12.0 h uninterrupted dark period to induce flowering; however, scientific information is lacking to prove this is the optimal dark period for all genotypes, and cultivar specific photoperiods may increase productivity. Tissue culture can be used for research requiring multiple treatments, proper replication, and in a controlled environment on a smaller scale compared to greenhouse and indoor facilities. To determine whether cannabis explants can flower under varied photoperiods in vitro, explants were grown under one of six photoperiod treatments: 12.0, 13.2, 13.8, 14.4, 15.0, and 16.0 h for four weeks. The percentage of flowering explants was highest under 12.0 and 13.2 h treatments. There were no treatment effects on the fresh weight, final height, or growth index of the explants. The results suggest an uninterrupted dark period of at least 10.8 h (i.e. 13.2 h photoperiod) is needed to induce the flowering of this genotype. In vitro flowering could provide a unique and high throughput approach to study floral/seed development and secondary metabolism in cannabis under highly controlled conditions. Further research should determine if this response is the same on a whole plant level.


cannabis; dark period; flower initiation; photoperiod; tissue culture

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