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Garden with Insight v1.0 Help: vernalization

Vernalization is the hastening of flowering due to cold temperatures. Many biennial (two-year) plants rely on cold temperatures as a reliable sign that at least one winter has passed and therefore it is the right time to flower. Obligate vernalization is absolutely necessary for flowering: plants that have obligate vernalization will not flower if they have not been exposed to cold temperatures for a period of time. Quantitative vernalization is not necessary for flowering, but it moves up the time at which flowering starts. The plant literature is not at all conclusive on which plants have what types of vernalization as there is a lot of variation even among individual plants; but large (qualitative) trends can be identified.

This simulation models vernalization by accumulating thermal units in the same way that heat units are accumulated for growth, with the optimal temperature for vernalization replacing the optimal growth temperature. Many plants vernalize best in the range of 0 to 5 degrees C.

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Updated: May 4, 1998. Questions/comments on site to
Copyright © 1998 Paul D. Fernhout & Cynthia F. Kurtz.