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Wesley R. Autio

`Summerland Red McIntosh' apple trees propagated on M.9/A.2,O.3, M.7 EMLA, M.26 EMLA, M.7A. OAR1, or Mark rootstocks were planted in 1985 in a randomized complete block design with seven replications. Fruit ripening and quality were assessed in 1988-93. Internal ethylene concentrations were measured weekly throughout each harvest season. Once each season, fruit weight, starch-index value, soluble solids concentration, flesh firmness, and surface ted color were assessed on a sample of fruit from each tree. Size was smallest for fruit from trees on OAR1 or Mark, after accounting for the effects of crop load with analysis of covariance. Surface ted color was greatest for fruit from trees on Mark and least for fruit from trees on M.7 EMLA. Ripening was variable, but generally, fruit from trees on 0.3 ripened first, and fruit from trees on M.7 EMLA or M.7A ripened last. Crop load impacted ripening, but its effects were removed with analysis of covariance.

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James R. Schupp and Duane W. Greene

To compare the effects of growth regulators on preharvest fruit drop and fruit maturity, aminoethoxyvinylglycine (AVG) was applied to `McIntosh' apple trees at 75, 150, or 225 mg·L-1, at 8, 4, or 2 weeks before harvest (WBH). These treatments were compared to NAA, daminozide, and to an untreated control. All AVG treatments and timings except 75 mg·L-1 applied 8 WBH delayed preharvest drop and fruit maturity. AVG applied at 225 mg·L-1was more effective in delaying drop and development of maturity than other rates when applied 8 or 2 WBH, but at 4 WBH, 150 mg·L-1 gave equivalent results to 225 mg·L-1. AVG at 150 mg·L-1 was superior to NAA or daminozide as a stop-drop agent. No concentration, or time of application of AVG influenced fruit size at harvest. AVG reduced internal ethylene concentration (IEC) in `McIntosh' apples linearly with increasing AVG concentration. There was a linear relationship between time of AVG application (8, 4, or 2 WBH) and IEC in the fruit after harvest, and the time required for harvested fruit to enter the ethylene climacteric. Development of red color was delayed by AVG. This was attributed to a delay in ripening as determined by a slower increase in IEC and starch hydrolysis. In general, earlier application of AVG resulted in reduced effectiveness of lowering IEC following harvest. Chemical names used: aminoethoxyvinylglycine (AVG), naphthaleneacetic acid (NAA), succinic acid-2,2-dimethylhydrazide (daminozide).

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J.P. Mattheis, D.A. Buchanan, and J.K. Fellman

Quantitative and qualitative changes in net production of volatile compounds by apples occurs during fruit development with a major transition to ester production occurring as fruit ripening begins. Ester production during fruit ripening is an ethylene-mediated response; however, differences in maturation patterns among apple cultivars led us to examine the relationship between ester production and onset of the ethylene climacteric in several commercial apple cultivars. Emission of volatile esters as a function of apple fruit development was evaluated for `Royal Gala', `Bisbee Delicious', `Granny Smith', and `Fuji' apple fruit during two harvest seasons. Apples were harvested weekly and analyses of harvest maturity were performed the day after harvest. Non-ethylene volatiles were collected from intact fruit using dynamic headspace sampling onto Tenax traps. Fruit from each harvest was stored at 1°C in air for 5 months (3 months for `Royal Gala') plus 7 days ripening at 20°C, then apples were evaluated for the development of disorders. The transition to ester production occurred after internal ethylene exceeded 0.1 μL for `Royal Gala', `Bisbee Delicious', and `Fuji'. Ester emission by `Granny Smith' apples remained low throughout the harvest period. Increased ester emission occurred after the optimum harvest date (as determined by the starch index and internal ethylene concentration) for controlled-atmosphere storage of `Bisbee Delicious' and prior to optimum maturity for `Royal Gala' and `Fuji'. A relationship between the potential for development of superficial scald and ester production at harvest was evident only for `Bisbee Delicious' apples.

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C. Larrigaudiere, E. Pinto, and M. Vendrell

The differential effects of two color improving products, ethephon an ethylene-releasing compound, and seniphos, a nonethylene-releasing product, were studied on `Starking Delicious' apples (Malus domestica Borkh L.). Ethephon and seniphos were applied 2 or 3 weeks before commercial harvest. Ethephon- and seniphos-treated fruit showed a significant improvement of peel color associated with a sharp increase in anthocyanin content and chromaticity values. Color improvement in ethephon-treated apples occurred during the preharvest period and cold storage. The seniphos-treated fruit stopped color development in cold conditions. In comparison to the ethephon-treated fruit, the seniphos-treated apples showed lower internal ethylene concentrations and a ripening delay. Both treatments sharply increased the activity of phenylalanine-ammonia-lyase enzyme, which seemed to be the determining factor of color enhancement. The seniphos-treated apples compared to ethephon had higher fruit firmness and lower soluble solids concentrations. Anthocyanin biosynthesis may be enhanced by seniphos treatment without inducing ethylene production or other ripening associated changes. As a consequence, fruit treated with seniphos can be held longer in storage.

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Jacqueline K. Burns, Ulrich Hartmond, and Walter J. Kender

The abscission action of two sulfonylureas and one imidazolinone was evaluated in laboratory studies with harvested orange (Citrus sinensis L. cv. Valencia) fruit and greenhouse studies with orange (cv. Hamlin) and grapefruit (Citrus paradisi Macf. cv. Marsh) trees. Dipping harvested fruit in 90 mg·L–1 imazameth, 2 mg·L–1 metsulfuronmethyl, or 30 mg·L–1 prosulfuron solutions increased levels of internal ethylene. Internal ethylene concentration was higher when fruit were dipped in 2 mg·L–1 metsulfuron-methyl solutions at low pH. Fruit retained on trees and dipped in 2 mg·L–1 metsulfuron-methyl solutions produced more ethylene than control fruit. Drop of treated fruit began when ethylene production was at a maximum. High temperatures (average 33 °C) suppressed ethylene production and fruit drop of metsulfuron-methyl–treated fruit. The results indicate the importance of environmental conditions in evaluating the potential of sulfonylureas and imidazolinones as abscission agents for citrus. Chemical names used: ±-2-[4,5-dihydro-4-methyl-4-(1-methylethyl)-5-oxo-1H-imidazol-2-yl]-5-methyl-3-pyridinecarboxylic acid (imazameth); methyl 2-[[[[(4-methoxy-6-methyl-1,3,5-triazin-2yl) amino] carbonyl] amino] sulfonyl] benzoate (metsulfuron-methyl); 1-(4-methoxy-6-methyl-triazin-2-yl)-3-[2-(3,3,3-trifluoropropyl) phenylsulfonyl] urea (prosulfuron); N-(phosphonomethyl) glycine (glyphosate); 2-[4,5-dihydro-4-methyl-4-(1-methylethyl)-5-oxo-1 H-imidazol-2-yl]-3-quinolinecarboxylic acid (imazaquin).

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Renae E. Moran

The goal of this project was to evaluate the effectiveness of aminoethoxyvinylglycine (AVG) for increasing effectiveness of 1-methylcyclopropene (1-MCP) for maintaining firmness and preventing scald in `McIntosh' and `Cortland' apples (Malus ×domestica). AVG and 1-MCP used together maintained `McIntosh' apple firmness more than 1-MCP used alone after 120 or 200 days of controlled-atmosphere (CA) storage. AVG and 1-MCP can be used to maintain firmness of `McIntosh' when internal ethylene concentration (IEC) at harvest is as high as 240 μL·L-1, but CA storage life is limited to 4 months. AVG was not effective at increasing efficacy of 1-MCP on `Cortland' when IEC at harvest was not significantly different between AVG-treated and untreated fruit and IEC was less than 2 μL·L-1. AVG increased efficacy of 1-MCP on `Cortland' when IEC was 36 μL·L-1 in untreated fruit compared to undetectable in AVG treated fruit. 1-MCP prevented scald of `Cortland' in 1 year and reduced it to 5% or less in another year when fruit were stored 120 days. 1-MCP reduced `Cortland' scald to 34% or less after 200 days of storage.

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James M. Wargo and Chris B. Watkins

`Honeycrisp' apples (Malus × domestica) were harvested over 3-week periods in 2001 and 2002. Maturity and quality indices were determined at harvest. Fruit quality was evaluated after air storage [0.0 to 2.2 °C (32 to 36 °F), 95% relative humidity] for 10-13 weeks and 15-18 weeks for the 2001 and 2002 harvests, respectively. Internal ethylene concentrations (IEC), starch indices (1-8 scale), firmness and soluble solids content (SSC) did not show consistent patterns of change over time. Starch hydrolysis was advanced on all harvest dates, but it is suggested that a starch index of 7 is a useful guide for timing harvest of fruit in western New York. After storage, firmness closely followed that observed immediately after harvest, and softening during storage was slow. No change in SSC was observed during storage in either year. Incidence of bitter pit and soft scald was generally low and was not affected consistently by harvest date. The incidence of stem punctures averaged 18.5% over both years, but was not affected by harvest date. Development of stem end cracking in both years, and rot development in one year, increased with later harvest dates. A panel of storage operators, packers, growers, and fruit extension specialists evaluated the samples for appearance and eating quality after storage, and results suggested that a 2-week harvest window is optimal for `Honeycrisp' apples that are spot picked to select the most mature fruit at each harvest.

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Zhiguo Ju and Eric A. Curry

Effects of Lovastatin treatment on ethylene production, α-farnesene biosynthesis, and scald development were studied using `Delicious' and `Granny Smith' apples [Malus sylvestris (L.) Mill. var. domestica (Borkh.) Mansf.] and `d'Anjou' pears (Pyrus communis L.) stored in air at 0 °C. During 6 months storage, Lovastatin did not affect internal ethylene concentration but reduced α-farnesene production in a concentration dependent manner in both apples and pears. Lovastatin reduced scald at 0.63 mmol·L-1 and inhibited scald completely at 1.25 or 2.50 mmol·L-1 in `Delicious' and `Granny Smith' apples. In `d'Anjou' pears, Lovastatin at concentrations from 0.25 to 1.25 mmol·L-1 inhibited scald completely. After 8 months storage, inhibition of scald in both apples and pears by Lovastatin was concentration-dependent but none of the concentrations totally eliminated scald. Compared with 11.8 mmol·L-1 diphenylamine, Lovastatin treatment reduced scald to the same level at 1.25 mmol·L-1 in `d'Anjou' pear and 2.50 mmol·L-1 in `Delicious' and `Granny Smith' apples. Lovastatin did not affect apple or pear fruit color, firmness, soluble solids content, or titratable acidity during storage in either apple or pear compared with the controls. Chemical name used: [1S-[1a (R °), 3α, 7β, 8β (2S °, 4S °), 8αβ]]-1,2,3,7,8,8α-hexahydro-3,7-dimethyl-8-[2-(tetrahydro-4-hydroxy-6-oxo-2H-pyran-2-yl)ethyl]-1-naphthaienyl 2-methylbutanoate (Lovastatin).

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Zhiguo Ju and Eric A. Curry

Effects of Lovastatin treatment on ethylene production, α-farnesene biosynthesis, and scald development were studied using `Delicious' and `Granny Smith' apples and `d'Anjou' pears stored in air at 0 °C. During 6 months of storage, Lovastatin did not affect internal ethylene concentration, but reduced α-farnesene production in a concentration-dependent manner in both apples and pears. Lovastatin reduced scald at 0.63 mmol·L-1 and inhibited scald completely at 1.25 or 2.50 mmol·L-1 in `Delicious' and `Granny Smith' apples. In `d'Anjou' pears, Lovastatin at concentrations from 0.25 to 1.25 mmol·L-1 inhibited scald completely. After 8 months of storage, the inhibition of scald in both apples and pears by Lovastatin was concentration-dependent, but none of the concentrations eliminated scald. Compared with 11.8 mmol·L-1 diphenylamine (DPA), Lovastatin treatment reduced scald to the same level at 1.25 mmol·L-1 in `d'Anjou' pear and 2.50 mmol·L-1 in `Delicious' and `Granny Smith' apples. Compared to the controls, Lovastatin did not affect fruit color, firmness, soluble solid contents, or titratable acidity during storage in either apple or pear.

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Christopher B. Watkins, Mustafa Erkan, Jacqueline F. Nock, Kevin A. Iungerman, Randolph M. Beaudry, and Renae E. Moran

`Honeycrisp' is a new apple [Malus sylvestris (L.) Mill. var. domestica (Borkh.) Mansf.] cultivar that has been planted extensively in North America, but the storage disorders soggy breakdown and soft scald have resulted in major fruit losses. The effects of harvest date and storage temperature on fruit quality and susceptibility of fruit to these disorders have been investigated in Michigan, New York, and Maine. Internal ethylene concentrations were variable over a wide range of harvest dates, and a rapid increase in autocatalytic ethylene production was not always apparent. The starch pattern index, soluble solids content, titratable acidity and firmness also appear to have limited use as harvest indices. Development of soggy breakdown and soft scald is associated with later harvest dates and storage of fruit at temperatures of 0 to 0.5 °C compared with higher storage temperatures. It is recommended that `Honeycrisp' be stored at 3 °C, although storage disorders still can occur at this temperature if fruit are harvested late. In addition, greasiness development may be worse at higher storage temperatures.