Root Pruning Reduces Photosynthesis, Transpiration, Growth, and Fruiting of Container-grown French-American Hybrid Grapevines

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  • 1 Horticulture and Crop Science, The Ohio State University, Ohio Agricultural Research and Development Center, Wooster, OH 44691-4096

`Seyval blanc' and `Vidal blanc' grapevines (Vitis sp.) grown in large containers were root-pruned at different severities and/or stages of development and the effects on growth of both cultivars and fruiting of `Seyval blanc' were determined. As the severity of root pruning increased, stomatal conductance (gs) and transpiration (E) decreased and the number of wilted leaves increased in both cultivars. In both cultivars, root pruning reduced net photosynthesis (Pn) and E for as long as 18 to 20 days, as well as total leaf area and dry weight of leaves and petioles plus tendrils. The reductions were proportional to the degree of root pruning. A similar pattern existed for cane and root tissue of `Vidal blanc'. As the severity of root pruning increased, berry and cluster weight, and titratable acidity (TA) of `Seyval blanc' decreased. There was no effect of root pruning on berries per cluster, soluble solids content (SSC), or pH of the juice. No interaction was significant for any factor between time of root pruning and fruiting measured on `Seyval blanc' vines. Root pruning at bloom reduced leaf area, number of leaves, and dry weight of petioles, trunks, and canes. Root pruning at veraison had no effect on any vegetative or fruit parameters. Fruiting `Seyval blanc' vines had less leaf area and smaller petiole and cane dry weights than did nonfruiting vines.

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