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Michelle G. Wirthensohn, Margaret Sedgley, and Renate Ehmer

Optimum pruning height for cut foliage production was investigated for 3-year-old trees of Eucalyptus globulus Labill. Trees cut at a height of 1.0 m above ground level had most stems resprouting from the trunk, but a pruning height of 0.5 m produced the longest stems. Postharvest trials were conducted to assess the vase life of cut stems, and the effect of pulsing and simulated transportation on vase life. Holding solutions containing 1% or 2% sucrose and 8-HQC at 200 mg·L–1 significantly increased vase life of E. globulus and E. cinerea F. Muell. ex Benth. over the control, but pulsing E. cinerea in 1%, 5%, or 10% sucrose plus 8-HQC for 2 hours at 24 °C or 24 hours at 3 °C had no effect. In simulated transport trials, pulsing overnight in 1% or 5% sucrose plus 8-HQC at 3 °C followed by 1 week dry storage at 3 °C had no effect on the vase life of cut stems of E. sideroxylon Cunn. ex Wools., E. platypus Hook., E. spathulata Hook., E. cladocalyx F. Muell. E. platypus, or E. spathulata E. sargentii Maiden, but a 5% sucrose pulse plus 8-HQC significantly increased the vase life of E. spathulata E. platypus. A long pulse at low temperature (24 hours/3 °C) followed by 1 week dry storage was more effective than a short pulse at high temperature (2 hours/24 °C) for E. albida Maiden & Blakely stems and no sucrose was more effective than 1% or 5%. Thus, a pruning height of 0.5 or 1.0 m was optimum for cut foliage production of E. globulus, and a 2% sucrose holding solution extended vase life. There was no advantage of sucrose pulsing to extend vase life, or to improve vase life following dry storage, except for the hybrid E. spathulata E. platypus. Chemical name used: 8-hydroxyquinoline citrate (8-HQC).

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Abraham H. Halevy and Anton M. Kofranek

Abstract

Splitting and out-rolling of the stem bases in cut flowers of Hippeastrum Xhybridum was prevented by a 1-day-pulse treatment with 0.125 m sucrose. Pulsing also slightly increased vase life and promoted the opening of all the flower buds on the stem.

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Tim D. Davis, Wayne A. Mackay, and Narendra Sankhla

Big Bend bluebonnet (Lupinus havardii Wats.) is native to a narrow geographic range in southwestern Texas and produces attractive blue inflorescences (racemes) that may be used as cut flowers. Several crops were produced in the greenhouse to determine postharvest-characteristics of the cut inflorescences. Without any postharvest conditioning treatments, the inflorescences held in water had an average vase life of about 7 days. During this period, an average of 13 flowers abscised per inflorescence. When preconditioned for 4 hours in 40 to 160 mg·liter−1 silver thiosulfate (STS), vase life increased to 10 to 12 days and fewer than three flowers abscised per inflorescence. A commercial floral preservative (Oasis) had no effect on flower abscission or vase life of STS-treated inflorescences. Flower abscission and vase life were the same whether STS-treated inflorescences were placed in floral foam moistened with water or in water alone. Storing STS-preconditioned inflorescences in water at 5C for 72 hours did not affect flower abscission or vase life compared to the unstored control. Dry postharvest storage at 5C for 72 hours caused noticeable wilting, but, on dehydration, these inflorescences still had a vase life of about 8 days. Postharvest characteristics of pink-and white-flowered breeding lines were the same as for the blue-flowered line. These results indicate that cut inflorescences of L. havardii have desirable postharvest qualities and can be stored for up to 72 hours without seriously limiting vase life.

Open access

Libby Loftus Conrado, Richard Shanahan, and William Eisinger

Abstract

The effects of pH, osmolarity, and oxygen content on solution uptake by cut flowers of Rosa hybrida L. cvs. Cara Mia and White Satin were investigated. Solution uptake was increased at low pH (below 3) while high pH (above 6) inhibited uptake; both effects were amplified with time. Solution uptake was altered by the composition of the buffer. Maximum vase life was achieved with pH 5 solutions. The rates of uptake of various floral chemicals correlated well with the pH values. Mannitol and high concentration of sucrose significantly inhibited total solution uptake but potassium chloride did not inhibit uptake. Deoxygenated solutions were taken up 45% more rapidly during the first 2 hours, but oxygen content had no significant effect on total uptake after 72 hours. High rates of solution uptake do not seem to be required for extension of cut rose vase life.

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Fisun G. Çelikel and Michael S. Reid

The respiration of cut flowers of gerbera (Gerbera jamesonii H. Bolus ex Hook.f. `Vesuvio') and sunflower (Helianthus annuus L.) increased exponentially with increasing storage temperature. Poststorage vase life and negatively gravitropic bending of the neck of the flowers were both strongly affected by simulated transport at higher temperatures. Vase life and stem bending after dry storage showed highly significant linear relationships (negative and positive, respectively) with the rate of respiration during storage. The data indicate the importance of maintaining temperatures close to the freezing point during commercial handling and transport of these important commercial cut-flower crops for maximum vase life.

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Peter R. Hicklenton

Leaf yellowing of Alstroemeria hybrida L. `Rio' and `Jacqueline', as measured by sphere spectrocolorimetry, was significantly delayed in vase life studies when the ends of cut stems were immersed in solutions of BAP or GA3 immediately following harvest. When BAP or GA3 was used alone at 50 mg·liter-1, foliage color and color intensity did not diminish during 14 days of storage in tap water. BAP and GA3 also showed interaction effects on leaf color, but little was gained by using combinations of chemicals. Chemical names used: 6N-benzylaminopurine (BAP); gibberellin (GA3).

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Robert H. Stamps

Four spunbonded crop covers were evaluated for use with and without irrigation for cold protection of leatherleaf fern [Rumohra adiantiformis (Forst.) Ching]. Heavier and less porous covers provided the most protection when used without over-the-crop irrigation. However, differences in cover weight and porosity did not affect temperatures under covers when over-the-crop irrigation was applied. Damage to immature fronds was decreased by 75% to 99% when the covers were used alone and by 98% to 99% when the covers were used with over-the-crop irrigation. Covers had no effect on frond vase life.

Open access

Yoram Mor, Fiona Johnson, and John D. Faragher

Abstract

The effects of inhibitors of ethylene synthesis and action on the vase life and quality of fresh and cold-stored ‘Gabriella’ roses (Rosa hybrida L. cv. Gabriella) were investigated. Aminooxyacetic acid (AOA) as a 1-hr pulse at 3 or 10 mM had no effect on the longevity of fresh flowers. However, the 10 mM pulse, applied either before or after cold-storage, extended by up to 2.7 days the longevity of roses that had been stored for 3 weeks at 1C. Silver thiosulfate (STS), as a 0.5-hr pulse at 0.5 mM, extended the life of fresh and cold-stored roses by 2 and 3 days, respectively.

Free access

Meng-Jen Wu, Lorenzo Zacarias, Mikal E. Saltveit, and Michael S. Reid

Continuous treatment with 8% ethanol doubled the vase life of `White Sim' carnation (Dianthus caryophyllus L.) flowers. Other alcohols, other concentrations of ethanol, or pulse treatments with up to 8% ethanol had little or no effect. Butanol and longer-chain alcohols shortened vase life and caused the flower stem to fold. During their eventual senescence, the petals of ethanol-treated flowers did not inroll; instead, individual petals dried slowly from their tips. Very little ethylene was produced by ethanol-treated flowers, and the normal increase in ACC content and EFE activity was also suppressed. Ethanol treatment also decreased the flowers' sensitivity to exogenous ethylene.

Open access

T. L. Prince and J. L. Robertson

Abstract

Survey analysis of the major North American rose producers provided a profile of industry marketing and postharvest management practices. The role of the wholesaler in product distribution has diminished, as more than half of the firms now utilize some form of retail distribution. Although most firms perceived little industry-wide uniformity in rose grading, packaging procedures were uniform, with most firms packaging roses in units of 25. The use of floral preservatives has been widely adopted, as nearly 80% of the firms used preservatives in their production operations, but postharvest storage practices have not been optimal, as nearly 45% of the firms stored roses at non-optimal temperatures levels. Most firms indicated that roses last between 5 and 6 days; however, 47% of the firms indicated that rose vase life should extent to 8 days or longer.