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Mebelo Mataa and Shigeto Tominaga

The effects of root restriction, induced by root restriction bags, was evaluated on `Yoshida' Ponkan mandarin (Citrus reticulata Blanco). Trees were planted in 0.02-m3 volume root wrap bags (RWBs), which were made from woven polystyrene fiber, or root control bags (RCBs) made from nonwoven UV-stabilized Duon polystyrene fibre with plastic bottoms. A direct soil planted, nonrestricted root treatment (DPC) was included as a control. After 3 years, reductions in height (14% to 29%), canopy volume (66% to 43%), girth (10% to 22%), and leaf area (8% to 12%) were recorded in both of the root restriction treatments. Greater reductions occurred in the RWB treatment. Photosynthesis, transpiration, water potential, and leaf carbohydrate content were not affected by root restriction although soil moisture content was lower in the root restricted treatments. Fruiting efficiency (i.e., number of fruit per unit volume of tree canopy) improved only in the RWB treatment over the control. Total soluble solids and the fruit color index were enhanced by root restriction.

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Mikeal L. Roose, Frank Suozhan Cheng, and Claire T. Federici

The `Flying Dragon' cultivar of Poncirus trifoliata L. Raf. is a strongly dwarfing rootstock for Citrus cultivars, reducing canopy volume of 9 year-old `Valencia' orange trees to 1/3 that of trees on standard rootstocks Open-pollinated seed of `Flying Dragon' was screened with isozyme markers to distinguish zygotic from nucellar (apomictic) seedlings. All zygotics had genotypes consistent with an origin by self-pollination. Zygotic seedlings were budded with `Valencia' orange scion and planted in the field. Of 46 progeny evaluated as rootstocks, 35 produced small trees similar to those on nucellar `Flying Dragon' and 11 produced large trees. This ratio is consistent with the 3:1 segregation expected for a single dominant gene. The dwarfing gene was closely linked, or pleiotropic with a gene causing curved thorns and stems. Several RAPD markers close to the dwarfing gene were identified with bulked segregant analysis. `Flying Dragon' apparently originated as a mutation because it had au identical genotype to non-dwarfing strains of trifoliate orange at all 38 isozyme and RFLP markers tested

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Frank Suozhan Cheng and Mikeal L. Roose

`Flying Dragon' Poncirus trifoliata L. Raf. is a dwarfing rootstock for citrus. Inheritance of dwarfing ability was studied in a population of open-pollinated seedlings of `Flying Dragon'. Molecular marker genotypes suggest that all seedlings originated from selfing. Progeny seedlings were budded with `Cutter Valencia' orange and planted in the field to evaluate the dwarfing effect of the seedling rootstock. At 5 years after planting, rankit analysis of the frequency distributions of trunk cross-sectional area and canopy volume suggested the presence of two overlapping distributions of 34 dwarf trees and 7 nondwarf. This ratio is consistent with inheritance of rootstock dwarfing as a single dominant gene for which `Flying Dragon' is heterozygous. Two morphological characteristics of `Flying Dragon', curved thorns and twisted trunk growth, were closely linked to, or pleiotropic effects of, the dwarfing gene. Bulked segregant analysis was used to identify three RAPD markers linked to the dwarfing gene. `Flying Dragon' was identical to nondwarfing cultivars of trifoliate orange at 40 homozygous and heterozygous isozyme and RFLP markers; therefore, it is likely that `Flying Dragon' originated as a mutant of a nondwarfing genotype and has not undergone sexual recombination since this event.

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R.C. Beeson Jr.

Three species of woody ornamentals, Viburnum odoratissimum Ker Gawl, Ligustrum japonicum Thunb., and Rhaphiolepis indica Lindl. were transplanted from 3.8-L into 11.4-L containers and grown for 6 months while irrigated with overhead sprinkler irrigation. Irrigation regimes imposed consisted of an 18-mm-daily control and irrigation to saturation based on 20%, 40%, 60%, and 80% deficits in plant available water [management allowed deficits (MAD)]. Based on different evaluation methods, recommendations of 20%, 20%, and 40% MAD are supported for V. odoratissimum, L. japonica, and R. indica, respectively, for commercial production. Comparisons of plant growth rates, supplied water, and conversion of transpiration to shoot biomass are discussed among irrigation regimes within each species. Comparisons of cumulative actual evapotranspiration (ETA) to either shoot dry mass or canopy volume were linear and highly correlated. Results indicated there were minimum cumulative ETA volumes required for plants to obtain a specific size. This suggests that irrigation regimes that restrict daily ETA will prolong production times and may increase supplemental irrigation requirements. Thus the hypothesis that restrictive irrigation regimes will reduce irrigation requirements to produce container plants is false due to the strong relationship between cumulative ETA and plant size.

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Robert J. McNeil* and Colleen M. Dettling

A 4-year `Satsuma' mandarin cultivar trial was conducted on the California Central Coast in San Luis Obispo. Cultivars compared were Owari, Dobashi Beni, and Okitsu Wase, all on Carizzo citrange rootstock. Trees were from 3 to 6 years of age and in their first 4 years of production during the four seasons that data was taken. Data taken each year was fruit maturity, color, size, and yield. Tree size was measured in the fourth year. `Okitsu Wase' fruit were harvestable 2 to 4 weeks earlier than `Owari' and `Dobashi Beni' considering meeting both minimum soluble solids to acid ratio (6.5/1) and minimum color (75%). `Okitsu Wase' was more consistent as to time of maturity. Maturity time of all cultivars varied each season based on weather. `Okitsu Wase' first minimum internal maturity varied from 15 Oct. to 1 Nov. Minimum color varied from 1 Nov. to 1 Dec. Dobashi Beni first internal maturity varied from 15 Oct. to 31 Dec. Minimum color varied from 15 Nov. to 31 Dec. Owari first minimum internal maturity varied from 15 Nov. to 31 Dec. Minimum color varied from 15 Nov. to 31 Dec. `Owari' had the highest total yield for the 4 years, followed by `Dobashi Beni'. `Okitsu Wase' had a significantly lower total yield than the other two cultivars for the 4 years. `Okitsu Wase' had higher percentages of smaller fruit and lower percentages of larger fruit than the other two cultivars in the first and fourth crop year, but had comparable percentages of larger fruit in the second and third year. The `Okitsu Wase' was a smaller tree than both the `Owari' and `Dobashi Beni' in height, width, and canopy volume.

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Anne-Marie Hanson, J. Roger Harris*, and Robert Wright

Mountain laurel (Kalmia latifolia L.) is a common native shrub in the Eastern United States; however, this species can be difficult to establish in landscapes. Two experiments were conducted to test the effects of transplant season and container size on landscape establishment of Kalmia latifolia L. `Olympic Wedding'. In experiment one, 7.6-L (2-gal.) and 19-L (5-gal.) container-grown plants were planted into a simulated landscape (Blacksburg, Va., USDA plant hardiness zone 6A) in early Fall 2000 and in late Spring 2001. 19-L (5-gal.) plants had the lowest leaf xylem potential (more stressed) near the end of the first post-transplant growing season, and leaf dry weight and area were higher for spring transplants than for fall transplants. For spring transplants, 7.6-L (2-gal.) plants had the highest visual ratings, but 19-L (5-gal.) plants had the highest visual ratings for fall transplants three growing seasons after transplanting. 7.6-L (2-gal.) plants had the highest % canopy volume increase after three post-transplant growing seasons. In experiment two, 19-L (5-gal.) plants were transplanted into above-ground root observation chambers (rhizotrons) in early Fall 2000 and late Spring 2001. Roots of fall transplants grew further into the backfill than spring transplants at the end of one post-transplant growing season. Overall, our data suggest that smaller plants will be less stressed the first season after transplanting and will likely stand a better chance for successful establishment in a hot and dry environment. Fall is the preferred time to transplant since capacity for maximum root extension into the backfill will be greater than for spring transplants.

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Jeffrey G. Williamson and E. Paul Miller

Bearing `Misty' and `Star' southern highbush blueberries were grown on pine bark beds and fertilized at three rates using granular and liquid fertilizers with a 3–1–2 (1N–0.83K–0.88P) ratio. Granular fertilizer was applied 8 times per year at 4-week intervals beginning in April and continuing through October. Liquid fertilizer was applied with low volume irrigation 16 times per year at 2-week intervals during the same period. During the growing season, irrigation was applied at 2- to 3-day intervals in the absence of rain. A 2 cultivar × 2 fertilizer type × 3 fertilizer rate factorial arrangement of treatments was replicated 8 times in a randomized complete-block design. All fruits were harvested from single-plant plots at 3- to 4-day intervals. Canopy volume was not affected by fertilizer type, but fruit yield was slightly greater for granular than for liquid fertilizer treatments. In 2003, fruit yield of 2.5-year-old `Misty' and `Star' plants increased with increasing fertilizer rates up to the highest rate tested (50 g N/plant/year). Similarly, in 2004, fruit yields increased with increasing fertilizer rates up to the highest rate (81 g N/plant/year). Root distribution was limited to the 12-cm-deep layer of pine bark with very few roots penetrating into the underlying soil. The positive growth responses of blueberry plants to high fertilizer rates in pine bark beds suggests that soluble fertilizer was leached through the pine bark layer into the soil below the root zone. More frequent, lighter applications of soluble fertilizers, use of slow-release or controlled-release fertilizers, and careful irrigation management may improve fertilizer use efficiency of blueberry plantings on pine bark beds.

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Alvaro Otero, Carmen Goni, and Jim Syvertsen*

Six-year-old `Spring' navel [Citrus sinensis (L.). Osb.] orange trees were either totally defruited, 50% defruited or left fully cropped to study effects of fruit load on growth net gas exchange characteristics of mature leaves on seven selected clear days from Nov. 2001 through July 2002. Near harvest time, defruited trees had more shoot flushes, greater leaf dry wt per area (LDW/A) but lower net assimilation of CO2 (Ac) and stomatal conductance (gs) at midday than leaves on trees with fruit. Defruited trees had a higher ratio of internal to ambient CO2 (Ci/Ca) concentration in leaves implying internal limitations were dominant over stomatal limitation on Ac. Removal of half the crop increased individual fruit mass but reduced fruit color development. Half the trees were also shaded for four months prior to harvest with reflective 50% shade cloth to determine effects of lower leaf temperature (Tl) and leaf-to-air vapor pressure difference (D) on leaf responses. On selected clear days throughout the season, shade increased midday Ac and gs but decreased Ci/Ca compared to trees in the open implying that high mesophyll temperatures in sunlit leaves were more important than gs in limiting Ac. There were no effects of the shade treatment on canopy volume, yield or fruit size. Shaded fruit developed better external color but lower Brix than sun-exposed fruit. Thus, the presence of mature fruit maintained higher Ac than in leaves on defruited trees but high leaf temperatures and D reduced gs and Ac on warm days throughout the season.

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Larry R. Parsons, T. Adair Wheaton, and William S. Castle

Citrus trees in an experimental planting responded well to high application rates of reclaimed water. Irrigation treatments included annual applications of 400 mm of well water and 400, 1250, and 2500 mm of reclaimed water. The effects of these irrigation treatments on two citrus cultivars (`Hamlin' orange and `Orlando' tangelo) combined with four rootstocks were compared. Growth and fruit production were better at the higher irrigation rates. The concentration of soluble solids in juice was diluted at the highest irrigation rate, but total soluble solids per hectare increased due to the greater fruit production. Average soluble solids/ha production was >15% higher at the 2500-mm rate than the 400-mm reclaimed water rate. While fruit soluble solids were usually lowered by higher irrigation, the reduction in fruit soluble solids observed on three of the rootstocks did not occur in trees on Carrizo citrange. Trees on Cleopatra mandarin grew similarly at the different irrigation rates, but canopy volume of trees on Swingle citrumelo was significantly smaller at the 400 mm rate than at the 2500 mm rate. Fruit peel color score was lower but juice color score was higher at the highest irrigation rate. Weed pressure increased with increasing irrigation rate, but was controllable. Both juice and fruit soluble solids were higher on Swingle citrumelo and lower on Cleopatra mandarin rootstock. Total soluble solids/ha, solids/acid ratio, and juice color were higher on Swingle rootstock. Reclaimed water, once believed to be a disposal problem in Florida, can be an acceptable source of irrigation water for citrus on well drained soils at rates up to twice the annual rainfall.

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J.P. Syvertsen and M.L. Smith

Four-year-old `Redblush' grapefruit (Citrus paradisi Macf.) trees on either the relatively fast-growing rootstock `Volkamer' lemon (VL) (C. volkameriana Ten. & Pasq.) or on the slower-growing rootstock sour orange (SO) (C. aurantium L.) were transplanted into 7.9-m3 drainage lysimeter tanks filled with native Candler sand, irrigated similarly, and fertilized at three N rates during 2.5 years. After 6 months, effects of N application rate and rootstock on tree growth, evapotranspiration, fruit yield, N uptake, and leaching were measured during the following 2 years. When trees were 5 years old, low, medium, and high N application rates averaged about 79,180, or 543 g N/tree per year and about 126,455, or 868 g N/tree during the following year. Recommended rates average about 558 g N/tree per year. A lysimeter tank with no tree and additional trees growing outside lysimeters received the medium N treatment. Nitrogen concentration in the drainage water increased with N rate and exceeded 10 mg·liter-1 for trees receiving the high rates and also for the no tree tank. Leachate N concentration and total N recovered was greater from trees on SO than from those on VL. Average N uptake efficiency of medium N rate trees on VL was 6870 of the applied N and 61 % for trees on SO. Nitrogen uptake efficiency decreased with increased N application rates. Trees outside lysimeters had lower leaf N and fruit yield than lysimeter trees. Overall, canopy volume and leaf N concentration increased with N rate, but there was no effect of N rate on fibrous root dry weight. Fruit yield of trees on SO was not affected by N rate but higher N resulted in greater yield for trees on VL. Rootstock had no effect on leaf N concentration, but trees on VI. developed larger canopies, had greater fibrous root dry weight, used more water, and yielded more fruit than trees on SO. Based on growth, fruit yield and N leaching losses, currently recommended N rates were appropriate for trees on the more vigorous VL rootstock but were 22% to 69 % too high for trees on SO.