Ethephon as a Mechanical Harvesting Aid for Highbush Blueberries (Vaccinium australe Small)1

in Journal of the American Society for Horticultural Science
Authors:
G. S. Howell Jr.Department of Horticulture, Michigan State University, East Lansing, MI 48824

Search for other papers by G. S. Howell Jr. in
ASHS
Google Scholar
PubMed
Close
,
B. G. StergiosDepartment of Horticulture, Michigan State University, East Lansing, MI 48824

Search for other papers by B. G. Stergios in
ASHS
Google Scholar
PubMed
Close
,
S. S. StackhouseDepartment of Horticulture, Michigan State University, East Lansing, MI 48824

Search for other papers by S. S. Stackhouse in
ASHS
Google Scholar
PubMed
Close
,
H. C. BittenbenderDepartment of Horticulture, Michigan State University, East Lansing, MI 48824

Search for other papers by H. C. Bittenbender in
ASHS
Google Scholar
PubMed
Close
, and
C. L. BurtonAgricultural Research Service, U.S. Department of Agriculture, Department of Botany and Plant Pathology, Michigan State University, East Lansing, MI 48824

Search for other papers by C. L. Burton in
ASHS
Google Scholar
PubMed
Close

Abstract

Application of (2-chloroethyl)phosphonic acid (ethephon) reduced fruit removal force (FRF) as much as 50% depending on concentration and time of application. Reduction in FRF allowed reduced mechanical harvesting vibration frequency which reduced damage to berries during harvest and thus increased shelf-life. Mechanical harvest was further facilitated by ethephon-induced color development and hastening of abscission which reduced the number of machine harvests required.

Contributor Notes

Received for publication September 3, 1974. Michigan Agricultural Experiment Station Journal Article No. 6952. The authors would like to thank J. W. Nelson, Michigan Blueberry Growers Association for help with plot harvesting and P. Jones and R. Bodke for allowing portions of the research to be done in their plantations with their mechanical harvesters.

  • Collapse
  • Expand