The aseptic in vitro culture of tissues and cells is what we call plant tissue culture. Cloning plants using this type of cell technology offers a plethora of potential benefits for many sectors, including your local farmers who can propagate plant inventory throughout the year.
What is Tissue Culture?
Plant tissue culture is an effective technology that can be applied to small scale farmers as well as larger-scale plant propagation operations. Plant media is gathered from a mother plant, and these cells or tissues are then grown and multiplied into thousands of perfectly identical plants. Tissue culture allows propagators to preserve plant genetics, develop more vigorous plants, and ultimately save money and increase revenue.
The new plantlets grow in a gelling media under strictly controlled environmental and nutritional conditions. These controlled conditions must provide the optimum environment for healthy development and multiplication.
Plant Tissue Culture: Benefits for Farmers
Recent years have seen an increase in how plant tissue culture methods have garnered industrial importance and popularity amongst businesses looking to improve propagation efficiency. There are many advantages that tissue culture can offer any person involved in plant propagation, from a local farmer right up to large scale agriculture.
For a farmer, there are few things as important as a hefty yield. What encourages a crop to have a healthy yield? Everything from genetics to disease management will have an effect on the yield. Tissue culture enables a farmer to carry a healthy mother plant’s desirable genetics throughout the crop. This is a game-changer for several reasons:
- Uniform Growing: By taking out the guesswork, a farmer can manage harvesting and maintenance with greater efficiency. Variations will normally occur within the same species, but with these micropropagation methods, farmers can eliminate those variations, and grow uniform plants that require the exact same harvesting and care.
- Genetic Enhancement: Farmers can take advantage of the perfect genetics, over and over again. Genetics that encourage high yields in the shortest amount of time and produce vigorous, disease-resistant plants offer the highest profit potential.
- Genetic Preservation: By using plant preservative mixture in the cultures, farmers can preserve desirable genetics and eliminate the risk of losing the genetic profile over time. PPM™ is an effective formulation for sterilization and can be administered with every movement to new containers. PPM™ also allows the plantlets to remain free from contamination.
- Year-Round Produce: In combination with a controlled climate, plant tissue culture methods can be used to grow plants in every season, all year round. A farmer that utilizes tissue culture methods can increase his revenue by increasing the amount of yields - whether we are talking about lettuce or bananas - as well as the harvest frequency.
Problems Farmers Face
Ask any farmer and they’ll tell you that they are never short of problems to eradicate. Tissue culture can reduce those problems, addressing them at their roots. Fungal growth? Low yields? Sickly plants? Viral infections? All of these problems can be avoided through the implementation of tissue culture methods and PPM™.
Farmers in developing nations can use tissue culture to improve genetics and increase yields to feed their nation and improve exports. In Africa, tissue culture has enabled farmers to grow a genetically enhanced rice that fairs better in tougher conditions and offers a higher yield as well. Tissue culture is a popular investment amongst banana farmers as well, especially those looking to propagate disease-free banana plantations. Furthermore, farmers specializing in ornamental, exotic, or rare plants are renowned for using TC techniques to ensure vigorous plants and, therefore, reliable profits.
Tissue Culture and Hemp Farmers
There is one industry, in particular, that is getting excited by TC - the hemp industry.
One thing is of paramount importance to this budding industry, and that is perfecting the bud. What makes a ‘perfect’ hemp plant? Desirable genetics and purity (no heavy metal or harmful chemicals).
As the hemp industry expands, it uncovers the importance of genetic reliability. And as research pours in, we are seeing hemp nurseries that need to meet strain demands (as the market links specific strains to specific health conditions). Demand is at an all-time high, and there are already reports that the North American industries are struggling to keep up with consumer demand.
As cannabis and hemp products continue to rise in popularity how will producers keep up with the ever-increasing regulations? The answer is simple; through the use of tissue culture. Just a few cells from the perfect genetic mother plant to produce not hundreds, but thousands of identical, high-quality plants that can surpass expectations while potentially reducing overall propagation costs (while still eliminating common issues).
Any farmer that wants to improve their product quality and increase propagation efficiency should consider investing in a tissue culture kit today.