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Movement and Source of Ethylene

 Movement of Ethylene

Ethylene moves into the plants by diffusion through space between the cells. Normally longitudinal diffusion is about 100 times faster than diffusion in the radial direction. It is soluble in the water and lipids and the dissolve ethylene movement is passive and systematic. The ripening fruits produce relatively more ethylene which diffuses out to air through cut and of pedicel, stomata and lenticels openings of the fruit surface. Out of the plant system ethylene can permeate through produce cardboards, shipping boxes, wood and even concrete walls.

Ethephon is a Source of Ethylene

The ethephon is an artificial source of ethylene. The chemical name of ethephon (C2H6ClO3P) is 2-Chloroethyl phosphoric acid. It is readily soluble in water, methanol, ethanol and acetone. Ethephon is available in the market with trade names of Ethereal, CEPA  and CEPHA. It is stable in the aqueous solution below pH 4 but decomposes into ethylene and phosphate as well as chlorine ions: It penetrates, moves and decomposes to ethylene in plant tissues and decomposition rate increases with pH.  Ethephon is used in the ornamental industry to delay flowering, selectively abort flowers, abscise leaves, reduce stem elongation and increase stem strength. Ethephon is used to control height and increase stem strength in Narcissus and Hyacinthus. Ethephon is used for fruit thinning in apples and loosening the berries. It is frequently used to hasten the ripening of climacteric fruits like banana, mango and tomatoes. 

Ethylene Inhibitors (link)

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