Phillipines

 
Last Updated: Saturday 04 July 2015

The giant staghorn fern, one of the endangered plants in the Philippines can now be saved from extinction. Professors at the Central Mindanao University ( cmu ) in Musuan, Bukidnon, have developed a technique that can help save endangered species. The giant staghorn fern ( Platycerium grande ), endemic in Mindanao, is a highly prized ornamental fern. As it is difficult to germinate its spores under natural conditions, this fern is considered an endangered species.

Cecilia B Amoroso and Victor B Amoroso, professors at the cmu , have presented a report to the Philippine Council for Agriculture, Forestry and Natural Resources Research and Development ( pcarrd ), saying that the endangered ferns can be mass propagated. pcarrd is a sectoral council of the Department of Science and Technology, which coordinates, monitors and evaluates research activities in agriculture, forestry and natural resources.

During experiments, the cmu professors report that the spores of giant staghorn fern in culture media germinated after 19 days (45 per cent germination) and 30 days (75 per cent germination). Compared to the growth of staghorn fern spores under natural conditions, this germination rate is higher and faster. The plantlets emerged from the germinated spores ( prothalli ) seven months after inoculation. Using the growing medium, the plantlets developed more fronds 20 months after inoculation.

When plantlets mature, they can be transferred in clay pots with garden soil and chopped Cyathea roots, the researchers said. They expressed the hope that this technique would pave the way for the mass propagation of the endangered fern.

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