Plant tissue culture / in-vitro culture
In this application, bits of plant tissue referred to as the explant are grown in laboratory conditions on an artificial medium containing hormones and vitamins. The starting material can be obtained from the leaf, stem, root, buds etc.
This offers opportunities for:
- Reduced contamination of plants,
- Rapid propagation or multiplication i.e. a large number of plants can be grown from a single individual starting with little amounts of material
- Rejuvenation of plants, and,
- Production of disease free planting material through use of growing tips (apical meristems) which are also cleaned and treated to eliminate viral diseases.
Most banana varieties on the market are produced through tissue culture. Potato planting material is also is also often produced through tissue culture.