This award will support collaborative research between Profs. Elizabeth G. Williams of the University of Kentucky, Lexington and Barbara F. Palser of Rutgers University, with Drs. John L. Rouse and R. Bruce Knox of the University of Melbourne, Australia. The investigators will study the pollination and fertilization processes of Rhododendron. The process of fertilization will be examined using both light and electron microscopy, and the pistil molecules involved in control of pollen tube growth will be identified. The project combines the skills and facilities of the investigators, with Drs. Rouse and Knox providing samples for pollen bioassays and electron microscopy facilities in their own laboratories; and Drs. Williams and Palser contributing skills in microscopy and in the experimental techniques of plant genetics and reproductive biology. This research will advance our knowledge of the means by which fertilization is controlled by the female organ of the flower, leading, ultimately, to an ability to manipulate the reproductive processes of flowering plants to control seed setting and to facilitate hybridization in plant breeding programs.