Spanning trees with many leaves and average distance.

*(English)*Zbl 1181.05052Summary: We prove several new lower bounds on the maximum number of leaves of a spanning tree of a graph related to its order, independence number, local independence number, and the maximum order of a bipartite subgraph. These new lower bounds were conjectured by the program Graffiti.pc, a variant of the program Graffiti. We use two of these results to give two partial resolutions of conjecture 747 of Graffiti (circa 1992), which states that the average distance of a graph is not more than half the maximum order of an induced bipartite subgraph. If correct, this conjecture would generalize conjecture number 2 of Graffiti, which states that the average distance is not more than the independence number. Conjecture number 2 was first proved by F. Chung. In particular, we show that the average distance is less than half the maximum order of a bipartite subgraph, plus one-half; we also show that if the local independence number is at least five, then the average distance is less than half the maximum order of a bipartite subgraph. In conclusion, we give some open problems related to average distance or the maximum number of leaves of a spanning tree.

##### MSC:

05C35 | Extremal problems in graph theory |