Regenerative potential of mugwort (Artemisia vulgaris L.) rhizome sections has not been quantified when rhizomes are transplanted into substrates encountered in landscapes and nursery fields, container nurseries, or propagation beds. Mugwort regeneration in pine bark, sand, and soil substrates was analyzed by rhizome color, length, and the presence or absence of a leaf scale. Color of rhizomes, which darken with time, did not account for differences in growth among treatments. Contrary to previous research, 85, 78, and 69% of 2 cm-long rhizome sections produced both roots and shoots when grown in pine bark, sand, and soil substrates, respectively, during 45-day trials. Slightly less than 31% of rhizome fragments 0.5 cm long without a leaf scale produced both roots and shoots in soil. Though fewer rhizomes survived in soil, root and shoot fresh weights were greater than in pine bark and sand. When rhizome sections included a leaf scale, survival, fresh weights of roots and shoots, shoot height, leaf number and root lengths were greater, regardless of substrate type. Root initials emerged both adjacent to leaf scales and in the internode between leaf scales. Shoot emergence preceded root emergence from rhizome sections.
2Assistant Professor, Assistant Professor, and Professor, Department of Plant Sciences, Knoxville, TN 37996.