Chin J Plant Ecol ›› 2018, Vol. 42 ›› Issue (12): 1192-1199.doi: 10.17521/cjpe.2018.0038

• Research Articles • Previous Articles     Next Articles

Effects of light quality on circumnutation of Vigna unguiculata seedlings

LI Qi,HU Fei()   

  1. College of Agriculture, South China Agricultural University, Guangzhou 510642, China
  • Received:2018-02-06 Revised:2018-09-26 Online:2019-04-04 Published:2018-12-20
  • Contact: Fei HU
  • Supported by:
    Supported by the National Natural Science Foundation of China(30470192)


Aims The aim of this study is to investigate the effect of different light qualities on circumnutation of cowpea (Vigna unguiculata) seedlings.

Methods The behaviors of cowpea seedlings were observed in a black box, which fixed with two infrared cameras on the top and a side, respectively. The motion was recorded as photos taken at an interval of 5 min, in a 3-dimensional space coordinate under different light qualities (such as white, red, blue, and red-blue with opposite direction) for 48 h. The coordinate values of cowpea seedling growth point (CPGP) were read on a computer screen.

Important findings The results showed that in the dark condition, the CPGP movements had two types, one was a spiral rising anticlockwise circulation, and the other was swinging up irregularly. The spiral rising anticlockwise circulation lasted 18.3 h, then turned to swing up irregularly. It takes (82.7 ± 4.2) min spiraling a circle on average, with the maximum range of swing 2.0 cm and the minimum 0.5 cm. Under white light condition, the CPGP movements tended toward light source with a swing up irregularly. The range of swing changed from decrease to increase, with the maximum range of swing 0.6 cm and the minimum 0.1 cm. Under red light condition, the CPGP movements showed two stages, in which one was a tending toward light source directly for (21.9 ± 1.6) h, the other was swing up perpendicular to light direction for (8.8 ± 0.5) h. The maximum range of swing was 3.5 cm, and the minimum was 2.0 cm. Under blue light condition, the CPGP movements showed a swing up with “Z” trajectory tending toward light source, alternating 2 durations with (110.0 ± 5.8) min and (223.5 ± 4.9) min. under red-blue light with opposite direction conditions, the CPGP movements tended toward blue light source for (12.0 ± 3.8) h, then toward red light source slowly. The order of CPGP within 48 h decreased under different light quality with red, dark, blue, white and red-blue. The seedlings of cowpea could move with circumnutation in dark conditions, suggesting that circumnutation does not need light induction. However, the light quality could change the movement direction and speed. CPGP movements showed different patterns under different light qualities, but the movements tended toward light source in general.

Key words: circumnutation, light quality, 3-dimensional space coordinate, Vigna unguiculata

Fig. 1

Space coordinates diagram of circumnutation of Vigna unguiculata seedlings. A, Side view. B, Top view."

Fig. 2

The trajectory of cowpea seedling in the darkness for 48 h. A, Three-dimensional trajectory. B, Elliptical type. C, Irregular type. ?, origin position of coordinates. Solid arrows indicate the direction of the movement."

Fig. 3

The trajectory of cowpea seedling in the white light for 48 h. A, Three-dimensional trajectory. B, Perpendicular type. ?, origin position of coordinates. Solid arrows indicate the direction of the movement. Light source center went through the origin of coordinates and short dash arrows indicate the light source direction."

Fig. 4

The trajectory of cowpea seedling in the red light for 48 h. A, Three-dimensional trajectory. B, Near linear type. C, Swing up perpendicular to light direction type. ?, origin position of coordinates. Light source center went through the origin of coordinates and short dash arrows indicate the light source direction. Solid arrows indicate the direction of the movement."

Fig. 5

The trajectory of cowpea seedling in the blue light for 48 h. A, Three-dimensional trajectory. B, “Z” shape. ?, origin position of coordinates. Light source center went through the origin of coordinates and short dash arrows indicate the light source direction. Solid arrows indicate the direction of the movement."

Fig. 6

The trajectory of cowpea seedling in the red and blue light for 48 h. A, Three-dimensional trajectory. B, Tending to blue light type. C, Tending to red light type. BL, blue light; RL, red light. ?, origin position of coordinates. Light source center went through the origin of coordinates and short dash arrows indicate the light source direction. Solid arrows indicate the direction of the movement."

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