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Rémy E. Milad and Kenneth A. Shackel

Irrigation of previously water-stressed French prune trees is known to induce fruit end cracking. The relationships between end cracking, water relations, and mechanical properties of the skin of French prune were studied as a function of irrigation regimes under field conditions. Water stress resulted in the accumulation of solutes in the fruit of nonirrigated trees. A gradient in osmotic potential (ΨS) existed along the vertical axis of fruit from all treatments; ΨS was always lower at the stylar than stem end. Irrigation of previously water-stressed trees (irrigated-dry treatment) resulted in ΨS gradients exceeding those of all other treatments. Moreover, estimated turgor (ΨP) at the stylar end of the fruit increased 2-fold within 24 hours after irrigation. These changes were accompanied by the onset of fruit end cracking, and neither the well-watered controls nor the continuously droughted fruit exhibited such changes. During the 24 hours following irrigation, the overall ΨS of irrigated-dry treatment fruit was diluted by the same amount as the calculated increase in fruit volume. However, during the same period, ΨS at the stem end of the fruit showed more dilution than expected, and ΨS at the stylar end of the fruit concentrated, indicating a redistribution of solutes. There were no differences in skin mechanical properties along the fruit vertical axis and, hence, this could not have accounted for the observed changes in ΨS and ΨP. Thus, when previously stressed French prune trees were irrigated, the overall recovery in water potential (Ψ) and the subsequent movement of solutes to the stylar end of the fruit resulted in apparently excessive turgors in this region and hence the observed pattern of end cracking.

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Angela D. Myracle, Zakkary J. Castonguay, Amber Elwell, and Renae E. Moran

://www.ers.usda.gov/data-products/food-availability-per-capita-data-system/food-availability-documentation/ > Usenik, V. Kastelec, D. Veberič, R. Štampar, F. 2008 Quality changes during ripening of plums ( Prunus domestica L.) Food Chem. 111 830 836 Usenik, V. Štampar, F. Kasteleč, D. 2014 Indicators of plum maturity: When do plums become tasty? Scientia Hort

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Rémy E Milad and Kenneth A Shackel

End cracking of French prune fruits occurs when previously water stressed trees are irrigated during early July. Fruit phloem, xylem and transpiration flows (P, X and T, respectively) were measured diurnally during 72 h periods in mid June, early July and mid July (before, during and after the crack-susceptible period). Midway through each 72 h period, the previously stressed trees were irrigated. In mid June, X was larger than P, whereas P was larger than X during early July. In mid July, P and X were similar. In early July, the period preceding irrigation was characterized by an ourflow of phloem sap during the day and phloem inflow during the night. After irrigation, larger phloem inflows were observed and no phloem outflow occurred. Fruit transpiration rates were highly correlated with VPD. They exhibited a gradual decrease during the season, reaching minimum values during early July, before increasing again. The sum of P and X was virtually identical for the three periods i.e. stronger P's compensated for weaker X's and vice versa. Our results suggest that properties intrinsic to the fruit play the primary role in modulating water and photosynthate movements between the tree and the fruit. The possible role of these properties on fruit growth and cracking will be examined.

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Harold McCutchan and K.A. Shackel

The relative sensitivity of plant- and soil-based measures of water availability were compared for prune trees subjected to a range of irrigation regimes under field conditions. Over the growing season, leaf- and stem-water potentials (ψ) measured at midday exhibited clear differences between frequently irrigated trees and unirrigated trees that were growing on stored soil moisture. Stem ψ was less variable than leaf ψ, and the daily variability in stem ψ was closely related to daily variability in evaporative demands, as measured by vapor pressure deficit (VPD). As a result of lower variability, stem ψ reflected the small stress effect of a moderate, 50% soil moisture depletion irrigation interval, whereas leaf ψ did not. The relation between soil water content and estimated orchard evapotranspiration (ET) was influenced by local differences in soil texture within the experimental plot. The relation between stem ψ and ET, however, was not influenced by soil texture and, in addition, was very similar to the relation between stem ψ and leaf stomatal conductance. Both relationships indicated that a 50% reduction in leaf and canopy level water loss characteristics was associated with relatively small reductions (0.5 to 0.6 MPa) in stem ψ. Stem ψ appears to be a sensitive and reliable plant-based measure of water stress in prune and maybe a useful tool for experimental work and irrigation scheduling.

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Marek Szymajda and Edward Żurawicz

as ‘Jojo’, ‘Węgierka Dąbrowicka’, ‘Čačanska Rana’, or ‘Emper’. Prunus domestica is an economically important fruit crop species in Poland. In the last 10 years, the annual production of plums in Poland has amounted to about 100,000 t ( FAOSTAT, 2013

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Ann Callahan, Chris Dardick, Roberta Tosetti, Donna Lalli, and Ralph Scorza

344 Srinivasan, C. Dardick, C. Callahan, A. Scorza, R. 2012 Plum ( Prunus domestica ) trees transformed with poplar FT1 result in altered architecture, dormancy requirement, and continuous flowering PLoS One 7 E40715 Stansfield, W.D. 2006 Luther

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Shengrui Yao

Twelve peach (Prunus persica) cultivars, six apricot (Prunus armeniaca) cultivars, two japanese plum (Prunus salicina) cultivars, three european plum (Prunus domestica) cultivars, four sweet cherry (Prunus avium) cultivars, and three tart cherry (Prunus cerasus) cultivars were monitored for winter damage at New Mexico State University's Sustainable Agriculture Science Center in Alcalde, NM (main site), and the Agricultural Science Center in Los Lunas, NM (minor site), in 2011. Uncharacteristically low temperatures on 1 Jan. and 3 Feb. were recorded as −7.2 and −11.3 °F, respectively, at Alcalde, and 4.8 and −13.9 °F, respectively, at Los Lunas. On 10 Jan. at Alcalde, live peach flower bud percentage varied by cultivar, ranging from 11% for Blazingstar to 25% for PF-1, and 85% to 87% for Encore and China Pearl. Apricot flower buds were hardier, with 70% survival for ‘Perfection’, 97% for ‘Sunglo’, and 99% for ‘Harglow’ on 10 Jan. By 10 Feb., almost all peach flower primordia were discolored, with no cultivar showing more than 1% survival. Based on this information, the 10% kill of flower buds for most peach cultivars occurred at temperatures equal to or slightly higher than −7.2 °F, and 90% kill occurred between −7.2 and −11.3 °F. On 10 Feb., 0% to 15% of apricot flower buds on spurs or shoots of the middle and lower canopy had survived. For vigorous shoots in the upper canopy, apricot flower buds on 1-year-old shoots had a higher blooming rate than those on spurs of 2-year-old or older wood. Flower buds of japanese plum were also severely damaged with less than 0.2% survival for ‘Santa Rosa’ and 4.8% for ‘Methley’, but european plum were relatively unaffected with over 98% flower bud survival for ‘Castleton’ and ‘NY6’, and 87% for ‘Stanley’ after −11.3 °F at Alcalde. Cherry—especially tart cherry—survived better than peach, apricot, and japanese plum after all winter freezes in 2011.

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Andrew P. Nyczepir, Alexis K. Nagel, and Guido Schnabel

recently demonstrated that expression of the VNF isoform of this lectin ( gafp-1-vnf , hereafter referred to as gafp-1 ) in transgenic tobacco ( Nicotiana tabacum cv. Wisconsin 38) and plum ( Prunus domestica lines 4J and 4I) suppressed root galling and

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David Karp

The 113 named varieties of plums introduced by Luther Burbank (1849–1926) were by far the most numerous and arguably the most significant of his horticultural accomplishments. He began by importing 12 seedlings from Japan in 1885, including ‘Abundance’ and ‘Satsuma’ (Prunus salicina). The cultivars he released in the late 19th and early 20th centuries played a crucial role in developing commercial cultivation of Asian-type plums in California, the United States, and much of the world; they also served as founding clones for later breeders. His crowning achievement was ‘Santa Rosa’ (introduced 1906), which in 1945, ‘Santa Rosa’ accounted for 36% of the California plum harvest. Many of Burbank’s other cultivars of primarily P. salicina ancestry were extensively cultivated in California in the early and middle 1900s, including ‘Beauty’ (introduced 1911), ‘Burbank’ (1888), ‘Duarte’ (1911), ‘Eldorado’ (1904), ‘Formosa’ (1907), and ‘Wickson’ (1895). His most important introductions of European plum (P. domestica) were ‘Improved French’ prune (1898), ‘Sugar’ prune (1899) and ‘Standard’ prune (1911). Some of Burbank’s more obscure introductions never received general distribution and have disappeared; others such as ‘Santa Rosa’, ‘Shiro’ (1899), and ‘Elephant Heart’ (released posthumously in 1929) still are commonly cultivated today in home gardens and for sale at local markets.

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Carlos H. Crisosto, Anita Nina Miller, Porter B. Lombard, and Scott Robbins

Studies in the use of fall ethephon to delay bloom in peach and prune were carried out during 1985-87. In `Italian' prune, ethephon at 250 and 500 mg·liter-l at 10% leaf-drop stage delayed bloom 13 and 16 days, respectively. Only a 5- and 7-day bloom delay occurred when applied at 50% leaf-drop stage. Fruit set and yield were not reduced in `Italian' prune when ethephon was applied at the 50% leaf-drop stage. Early applications, from vegetative maturity to the 10% leaf-drop stage, did not reduce yield in prone when trees had been previously defoliated with 3.0% urea. Early leaf removal, before vegetative maturity, caused reduction in peach flower and fruit number. In several peach cultivars, all the ethephon treatments were detrimental to flower density, fruit set, and yield, in spite of bloom delay. The ethephon-treated prune trees yielded more than the untreated trees in 1987 as a result of frost avoidance.