Anatomic studies have been performed on the leaf blade, petiole and annual shoot on six apple cultivars by means of scanning electron as well as light microscope. Four of the cultivars examined are resistant to scab (Florina, Freedom, MR-10, MR-11), whereas two of them are susceptible (Jonathan and Idared). Preliminary results suggest that differences in the width of cross sections of leaf blades, in hairyness, in the shape and size of epidermal cells, moreover, in the cross sections of petioles and shoots are considerable. Some of the anatomical properties seem to be correlated with scab resistance or susceptility of the respective cultivars. Therefore, further studies extending to other cultivars may corroborate our claims to find causal relations between anatomical traits of the leaves and disease, especially scab resistance of apple cultivars.
According to previous studies some anatomical features seem to be connected with resistance or susceptibility to scab caused by Venturia ineaqulis (Cke./Wint.) in case of a given cultivar. Study of leaf anatomy of three scab resistant (‘Prima’, ‘Florina’, MR–12) and two susceptible (‘Watson Jonathan’, ‘Golden Delicious Reinders’) apple cultivars have been made. Preserved preparations made of leaves has been studied by light microscope. Studied parameters were: thickness of leaf blade, thickness of palisade and spongy parenchyma, thickness of epidermal cells, thickness of the cuticle. By measuring leaf thickness and epidermal cell thickness visible differences appeared in certain cultivars, while most conspicuous difference has been shown in thickness of the cuticle.
During the winter dormancy period of 1998-99, the differentiation process of xylem and the formation of annual and pseudo-annual growth rings was studied in sections of the central stem of Thuja orientalis of different age (1-14 year old), starting from the top (the tip of leader shoot) towards the bottom. In the apical 1-2 cm portion of the one year-old leader shoot, only the protoxylem was formed by the end of vegetation. The protoxylem elements appeared first in 6 bundles than gradually merged into 2 semiquadrangular (triangular) bands (each containing 3 protoxylem bundels) around the pith. In this stem portion, the pith was cross-formed first and became gradually flattened at the lower stem parts, following the generally flattened shape of the stem and the respective facial and marginal position of leaves. A continuous xylem ring (with formation of metaxylem elements) apeared 3-5 cm below the shoot tip. In fact, it was the stem part where a "real" annual ring was formed by the end of vegetation. The first pseudo-annual rings were observed 16 cm below the top. The "regular" annual rings were completely continuous all around the stem, consisted of strongly flattened in radial direction thick-walled latewood tracheids and had a distinct border (demarcation line) at the end of the year. The "pseudo-annual" rings formed incomplete dark rings or semicircular bands within the earlywood. They were composed of tracheids with thick cell walls but somewhat wider radial diameter than those of the "real" annual rings, and the border between their outside margin and the next earlywood was less distinct.
In the xylem of two year old stem portion, the innermost central annual ring appeared not at the transition zone between the current and the former years of growth, but about 2 cm lower. Above that, only the thick-walled bundles of the former years protoxylem were found. Down the stem, the older sections showed similar features: the next annual ring appeared always somewhat lower than the borderzone of the given and the former years growth. The "pseudoannual" rings (or more correctly the growth rings) continued regularly to appear in the lower (older) sections of the stem as well. They were found untill the age of up to 14 years (the bottom of the studied plants). Their number was 3-4 per year first, than (from the 5th annual ring counted from the centre) decreased to 3,2,1, and in the youngest outer part of the xylem there was no pseudo-annual ring at all. The development of pseudo-annual rings was usually more marked on the thicker (more branched) than on the thinner side of stem. Stems older than 14 years were not studied.
Comparitive histological studies were made on the underground and the aboveground stem parts of Rosa rugosa taken from one year old suckers. The underground stem parts were characterized with thicker primary cortex, phloem and pith, weaker phloem fibers, wider cambial zone, medullary rays, xylem and phloem rays as compared with the aboveground stem parts. The most marked differences in the underground stem parts were in the wide cambial zone and in the development of some adventitious roots.