A blog maintained by Tevita Kete, PGR Officer

Secretariat of the Pacific Community (SPC), Suva, Fiji Islands



This weblog documents the activities of Pacific Agricultural Genetic Resources Network (PAPGREN), along with other information on plant genetic resources (PGR) in the Pacific.

The myriad varieties found within cultivated plants are fundamental to the present and future productivity of agriculture. PAPGREN, which is coordinated by the Land Resources Division of the Secretariat of the Pacific Community (SPC), helps Pacific countries and territories to conserve their crop genetic diversity sustainably, with technical assistance from the Bioversity International (BI) and support from NZAID and ACIAR.

SPC also hosts the Centre of Pacific Crops and Trees (CEPaCT). The CEPaCT maintains regional in vitro collections of crops important to the Pacific and carries out research on tissue culture technology. The CEPaCT Adviser is Dr Mary Taylor (MaryT@spc.int), the CEPaCT Curator is Ms Valerie Tuia (ValerieT@spc.int).




PAPGREN coordination and support

  • CTA
  • SPC
  • CEPaCT

     genebank locations
    Click on the thumbnail to see a map of the locations of Pacific genebanks. Click here to download a regional directory of genebanks in the Pacific, including information on their location, contact details and holdings.

    PAPGREN partners

    Mr William Wigmore
    Director of Research
    Ministry of Agriculture
    Department of Resources & Development
    P.O. Box 96
    Cook Islands
    Tel: (682) 28711-29720
    Fax: (682) 21881
    Email: cimoa@oyster.net.ck

    Mr Adelino S. Lorens
    Agriculture Pohnpei
    Office of Economic Affairs
    P.O. Box 1028
    Pohnpei 96941
    Federated States of Micronesia
    Tel: (691) 3202400
    Fax: (691) 3202127
    Email: pniagriculture@mail.fm

    Dr Lois Englberger
    Island Food Community of Pohnpei
    Research Advisor
    P.O. Box 2299
    Pohnpei 96941
    Federated States of Micronesia
    Email: nutrition@mail.fm

    Mr Apisai Ucuboi
    Director of Research
    Ministry of Agriculture, Fisheries & Forest
    Koronivia Research Station
    P.O. Box 77
    Fiji Islands
    Tel: (679) 3477044
    Fax: (679) 3477546-400262
    Email: apisainu@yahoo.com

    Dr Maurice Wong
    Service du Developpement Rural
    B.P. 100
    Tahiti 98713
    French Polynesia
    Tel: (689) 42 81 44
    Fax: (689) 42 08 31
    Email: maurice.wong@rural.gov.pf

    Mr Tianeti Beenna Ioane
    Head, Research Section
    Division of Agriculture
    Ministry of Environment, Lands and Agricultural Development
    P.O. Box 267
    Tel: (686) 28096-28108-28080
    Fax: (686) 28121
    Email : agriculture@tskl.net.ki; Beenna_ti@yahoo.com

    Mr Frederick Muller
    Ministry of Resources & Development
    P.O. Box 1727
    Majuro 96960
    Marshall Islands
    Tel: (692) 6253206
    Fax: (692) 6257471
    Email: rndsec@ntamar.net

    Mr Herman Francisco
    Bureau of Agriculture
    Ministry of Resources & Development
    P.O. Box 460
    Koror 96940
    Tel: (680) 4881517
    Fax: (680) 4881725
    Email: bnrd@pnccwg.palaunet.com

    Ms Rosa Kambuou
    Principal Scientist PGR
    NARI Dry Lowlands Programme
    Laloki Agricultural Research Station
    P.O. Box 1828
    National Capital District
    Papua New Guinea
    Tel: (675) 3235511
    Fax: (675) 3234733
    Email: kambuou@global.net.pg

    Ms Laisene Samuelu
    Principal Crop Development Officer
    Crops Division
    Ministry of Agriculture, Forests, Fisheries & Meteorology
    P.O. Box 1874
    Tel: (685) 23416-20605
    Fax: (685) 20607-23996
    Email: lsamuelu@lesamoa.net

    Mr Jimi Saelea
    Director of Research
    Department of Agriculture and Livestock
    P.O. Box G13
    Solomon Islands
    Tel: (677) 27987

    Mr Tony Jansen
    Planting Materials Network
    Kastom Gaden Association
    Burns Creek, Honiara
    P.O. Box 742
    Solomon Islands
    Tel: (677) 39551
    Email: kastomgaden@solomon.com.sb

    Mr Finao Pole
    Head of Research
    Ministry of Agriculture & Forests
    P.O. Box 14
    Tel: (676) 23038
    Fax: (676) 24271
    Email: thaangana@hotmail.com

    Mr Frazer Bule Lehi
    Head of Research
    Department of Agriculture & Rural Development
    Private Mail Bag 040
    Port Vila
    Tel: (678) 22525
    Fax: (678) 25265
    Email: flehi@hotmail.com

    Other links

    Other CROP agencies
    Forum Secretariat
    University of the South Pacific

    Pacific biodiversity
    Biodiversity hotspots
    Breadfruit Institute
    Hawaiian native plants
    Intellectual property rights
    Nature Conservancy
    WWF South Pacific Program

    Other Pacific organizations
    Foundation of the Peoples of the South Pacific
    Micronesian Seminar
    Te Puna web directory

    Pacific news
    Cafe Pacific
    CocoNET Wireless
    Island Directory
    Pacific Islands News
    Pacific Islands Report
    Pacific Islands Travel
    Pacific Time
    South Pacific travel
    Time Pacific

    Interested in GIS?



    Monday, October 16, 2006

    Taking Tissue Culture to the Kitchen

    Contributed by Valerie Tuia, RGC Curator.

    Joint Training Workshop organized by SPC CETC/RGC, 12-13th October 2006 at the SPC Community Education Training Centre (CETC), Narere

    • To highlight how tissue culture can be used to multiply some plants
    • To demystify the tissue culture so that you can gain an understanding of just how simple the technology is.

    What is Tissue Culture?

    Whenever we think of tissue culture, we think of high-tech labs with lots of equipment and scientists working away at some very complicated and sophisticated experiments. The last impression we have of it is associated with a kitchen. But this is not the case. Tissue culture is a relatively simple tool, which can be used to propagate plants. Farmers in Vietnam and China have set up small “labs” in their home kitchens to propagate “clean” planting material of potatoes.

    As indicated above the aim of this workshop was to give the participants a clear understanding of what tissue culture is, and what it can do, and to show how it could be used to generate planting material for ornamentals.

    Information was also provided on conventional propagation and also on pests and diseases of ornamentals.

    Brief Highlights

    Most of the 20 participants were ladies from the Suva Flower Growers Association. The same group of women visited the SPC Regional Germplasm Centre early in May 2006 and showed a lot of interest to learn more about tissue culture. The ladies were grateful to SPC for the workshop, which enabled them to learn a great deal, share experiences and obtain useful information during the two days.

    Tissue Culture – theory and practical sessions (Dr MaryTaylor and Valerie Tuia)

    Anthuriums and orchids were the main plants that ladies were interested in. Others brought some other plants to practice with, like heliconia, gardenia, hibiscus, crotons and caladiums. They find these hard and slow to propagate using convention methods. Their first and second attempts during the practical sessions were not too bad given it was their first time using tissue culture methods. A demonstration was performed on how to initiate and establish plants in culture, subculture a tissue cultured plant and how to transfer into the soil. Women were also given information on the costs involved and how to obtain a basic kitchen Culture Kit from some overseas suppliers. They were also delighted to have relayed the “good news” that AUSAID has approved SPCs proposal to fund a feasibility study on potential of floriculture in PNG, Vanuatu and Fiji. The ladies were appreciative of the proposal which would give them some form of support and guidelines as to which pathway to take.

    Pests and Diseases in Plants & Quarantine Implications

    Women also found presentations by Dr Richard Davis (SPC Virologist) and Sada Lal (SPC Entomologist) highlighting the different pests and diseases that affect plants including ornamentals very informative and interesting. The ladies were happy to see lots of pictures of pests and diseases and samples of live specimens brought into the workshop. The topic on harmful pests and diseases and their distribution through movement of plant material was very important for the women to be aware of. Moving plants without prior knowledge of pests and diseases is dangerous and the consequences could be to wipe out any potential industry. Ladies were discouraged from using chemicals but rather it was suggested they try plant derived pestcides (PDP) eg neem, chillies etc to control some of the pests and diseases found in their gardens, in combination with good cultural and physical practices.

    Another interesting topic was the introduction and planting of some ornamental plants which have been declared weeds eg. African tulip and Clerodendrum quadriloculare (Bronze-leaved clerodendrum). Most women were shocked and were not aware that Clerodendrum (with fireworks flowers) plant found in their gardens are “weeds”. These plants spread quickly and cover lots of arable land and forest, suppressing growth of important species and are usually are difficult to eradicate. A plant health clinic was then operated by Richard and Sada afterwards to have a look at the suspected plants brought in by the ladies.

    Other Conventional Methods – marcotting (airlayering) and crafting

    Mr Jai Narayan, Senior Technical Assistant from the Ministry of Agriculture, Sugar & Land Resettlement, Fiji also put up a fascinating demonstration of marcotting (airlayering) and crafting of plants, using the lime. The ladies were keen to learn more about the techniques, which could be applied to ornamentals, especially where normal methods of propagation do not seem to work. Only a few women knew how to marcot and craft plants and this was a good opportunity for all of them to learn and practice using their plants at home.

    * Comments:

    Post a Comment


    October 2002

    November 2002

    December 2002

    January 2003

    February 2003

    March 2003

    April 2003

    May 2003

    June 2003

    July 2003

    August 2003

    September 2003

    October 2003

    November 2003

    December 2003

    January 2004

    February 2004

    March 2004

    April 2004

    May 2004

    June 2004

    July 2004

    August 2004

    September 2004

    October 2004

    November 2004

    December 2004

    January 2005

    February 2005

    March 2005

    April 2005

    May 2005

    June 2005

    July 2005

    August 2005

    September 2005

    October 2005

    November 2005

    December 2005

    January 2006

    February 2006

    March 2006

    April 2006

    May 2006

    June 2006

    July 2006

    August 2006

    September 2006

    October 2006

    November 2006

    December 2006

    January 2007

    February 2007

    March 2007

    April 2007

    May 2007

    June 2007

    July 2007

    August 2007

    September 2007

    October 2007

    November 2007

    December 2007

    January 2008

    February 2008

    March 2008

    April 2008

    May 2008

    June 2008

    July 2008

    August 2008

    September 2008

    October 2008

    November 2008

    December 2008

    January 2009

    February 2009

    March 2009

    April 2009

    May 2009

    June 2009

    July 2009

    August 2009

    September 2009

    October 2009

    November 2009

    January 2010

    RSS Feed
    Alternative feed
    Contact Tevita


    Something new:

    Agrobiodiversity Weblog: For discussions of conservation and sustainable use of the genetic resources of crops, livestock and their wild relatives.  

    PestNet: For on-line information, advice and pest identification for the Pacific and beyond. Contact: Grahame Jackson.



    Pacific Mapper: For on-line mapping of point data over satellite images of the Pacific provided by Google Maps.



    DIVA-GIS: For free, easy-to-use software for the spatial analysis of biodiversity data.


    Locations of visitors to this page