Ethylene Inhibitors Delay Fruit Drop, Maturity, and Increase Fruit Size of 'Arlet' Apples

in HortScience

Aminoethoxyvinylglycine (AVG) applied as a spray to 'Arlet' apple trees inhibited fruit drop and increased the pull force necessary to detach the fruit. AVG delayed the loss of fruit firmness, starch degradation, fruit shriveling, and red color development. 1-Methylcyclopropene (1-MCP), applied as a gas or spray to trees in the field, did not affect fruit drop or pull force. The combination of AVG + 1-MCP (spray or gas) provided better control of fruit drop, slowed the loss of fruit firmness, starch degradation, and decrease in pull force than AVG alone. Thirty five days after the optimum harvest date, fruit firmness from trees sprayed with AVG + 1-MCP was maintained at 74.3 N. Fruit of the control was significantly lower at 61.4 N firmness. The delay in harvest caused untreated control fruit stems to turn brown and die, but stems on AVG treated trees remained green and fruit continued to grow. In the 35 days after the optimum harvest date, treated fruit increased 2.5 cm in fruit diameter. Chemicals used: Aminoethoxyvinylglycine (AVG), 1-Methylcyclopropene (1-MCP), and trisiloxane ethoxylate methyl ether (an organosilicone surfactant, Silwet L-77).

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