Puncture force was measured in `Gala'apple [Malus sylvestris (L.) Mill. var. domestica (Borkh.) Mansf.] fruit from 16 to 175 days after full bloom over 2 years using a range of circular flat-tipped probes (1 to 11 mm diameter) to test the firmness of each fruit. The area-dependent (Ka) and perimeter-dependent (Kp) coefficients of puncture force were determined and were used to calculate the indicative puncture force approximating a standard 11.1-mm-diameter Effegi/Magness-Taylor probe for even the smallest fruit. Ka declined exponentially throughout fruit development with much greater changes occurring closer to bloom. In contrast, maximum Kp occurred at 107 to 119 days after full bloom before declining progressively. Estimated firmness (using a 11.1-mm-diameter probe) declined constantly from 16 days after full bloom. Ka was associated with developmental changes in cortical tissue intercellular air space, cell volume and cell packing density although relationships changed throughout fruit growth. However seasonal change in Kp was not associated with any obvious anatomical change in the cortex.
Richard K. Volz, F. Roger Harker, and Sandy Lang
Iwan F. Labuschagné, J.H. Louw, Karin Schmidt, and Annalene Sadie
Significant response to selection for budbreak number (NB) based on data recorded on 1-year-old shoots of young apple (Malus sylvestris (L.) Mill var. domestica (Borkh.) Mansf.) seedlings (Expt. I) and branches from adult seedling trees (Expt. II) has been demonstrated in clonally propagated seedling trees. Between family variation for NB was low and masked by year × family interaction effects. Realized heritability for NB was estimated as 40% to 60%. Correlated response in uniformity and position of budbreak, and in the number and length of side shoots, was found. Association between the time of budbreak (TB) and NB, according to midparent and cross groupings, and according to the parental means, indicate a positive genetic correlation between these traits. Where data on adult trees were used as a measure of selection response and tested on young clonal trees, significant response and genetic variation was shown, confirming the presence of utilizable genetic variance and that this procedure may be successfully applied as an early screening method for increased budbreak in adult trees. Combined selection utilizing genetic variance between crosses as well as within crosses is proposed as the best procedure to increase the frequency of seedlings with increased budbreak and to improve adaptation to low winter chilling conditions.
P. Allan-Wojtas, K.A. Sanford, K.B. McRae, and S. Carbyn
The apple industry worldwide would benefit from an improved and standardized description of fresh-apple textural quality. The description proposed here is unique in that it integrates structural, sensory, and consumer information. To demonstrate its benefits, 24 apple cultivars [Malus ×sylvestris (L.) Mill. var. domestica (Borkh..) Mansf.] were sampled over two harvest seasons and analyzed using microstructural and sensory techniques. Cultivars were selected to cover a range of known sensory textures, and microstructural profiles were compiled in parallel with sensory and instrumental studies. Each cultivar was pre pared for conventional scanning electron microscopy (SEM) observation using standard methods. Representative fruit from each cultivar were photographed at three magnifications to visualize fruit architecture, tissue relationships, and size, shape, and arrangement of cells within layers to compile the microstructural profile. A trained sensory panel evaluated the cultivars for crispness, surface coarseness, sponginess, hardness, juiciness, degree of melting, mealiness, and skin toughness while a consumer panel rated liking. This information was compiled into a texture profile. The microstructural and texture profiles were then combined into a cultivar profile for each sample. Cultivar profiles were collected to form a database; subtle similarities and differences among the 28 market-quality samples were interpreted and noted. With this technique, those structures with similar sensory properties can be identified with some form of microscopy. Clarifying and predicting the parameters that are related to textural quality in new cultivars will streamline the introduction process.
Anne Plotto, Mina R. McDaniel, and James P. Mattheis
Changes in the odor-active volatile compounds produced by `Gala' apples [Malus ×sylvestris (L.) Mill. var. domestica (Borkh.) Mansf. `Gala'] were measured after 4, 10, and 20 weeks storage at 1 °C in regular atmosphere (RA) or controlled atmosphere (CA), and 16 weeks in CA followed by 4 weeks in RA. Aroma was evaluated using the gas chromatography-olfactometry method Osme. Production of volatile esters decreased along with corresponding fruity aromas during CA storage. Hexyl acetate, butyl acetate, and 2-methylbutyl acetate were emitted in the largest amounts and perceived with the strongest intensities from RA-stored fruit. While hexyl acetate and butyl acetate concentrations and aroma intensities decreased during CA storage, 2-methylbutyl acetate remained at the RA concentration until apples had been stored 16 weeks in CA. Perception intensities of methylbutyrate esters with apple or berrylike odors decreased less than straight chain esters in CA-stored fruit. 4-Allylanisole, ß-damascenone, and 1-octen-3-ol, as well as an unknown compound with a watermelon descriptor, were perceived more in RA-stored fruit than in CA-stored apples. Factor analysis indicated the importance of these compounds in `Gala' apples stored 4 weeks in RA. Even though these compounds do not have an apple odor, they contribute to fresh `Gala' aroma.
Pierre-Éric Lauri and Jean-Marie Lespinasse
Growing shoots of two apple [Malus sylvestris (L.) Mill. var. domestica (Borkh.) Mansf.] genotypes differing in shoot architecture, the preselection X.3318 and the cultivar `Chantecler', were bent on three dates during the summer and one in the winter to evaluate the interactive effects of shoot architecture and bending date on lateral shoot development and growth over 3 years. Bending X.3318, with a high proportion of vegetative lateral shoots on 1-year-old wood, on different dates did not change the percentage of lateral budbreak (62% to 65%). However, bending in June or July increased lateral growth on 1- and 2-year-old wood in a mesotonic position, whereas bending in winter reduced lateral growth and redistributed the shoots more basitonically. Both number and weight of fruits were reduced by bending. In `Chantecler', which forms many flower buds on 1-year-old wood, bending during flower bud formation (June-July) increased the percentage of lateral budbreak (60% vs. 45% for the control) and the number of flower buds. After 3 years of development, early summer treatments reduced the abortion of laterals as compared to the control. As a consequence, bending increased the number, as well as the weight of fruit. These results show that the effects of bending on the development and growth patterns of lateral shoots vary with genotype.
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.
Satoru Tsuchikawa, Sanae Kumada, Kinuyo Inoue, and Rae-Kwang Cho
Time-of-flight near-infrared spectroscopy (TOF-NIRS) was used to investigate optical characteristics of water-cored tissue in `Fuji' apples [Malus sylvestris (L.) Mill. var. domestica (Borkh. Mansf.)]. The combined effects on the time resolved profiles of water core, laser beam wavelength, and detection position of transmitted light were investigated in detail. Attenuance of peak maxima (At), time delay of peak maxima (Δt), and variation of full width at half maximum (Δw) decreased gradually as water core increased. Water-cored tissue transmitted much more energy because of the filling of intercellular spaces with liquid, so that the light path time through a sample decreased. These parameters were also strongly dependent on detection position and wavelength of the laser beam. The substantial optical path length calculated from Δt at λ = 800 nm was 10 to 17 times, while that for λ = 900 nm varied from six to 11 times the distance of the diameter of the fruit. Results indicated the optimum optical parameter for detection of water core was Δt.
Rongcai Yuan and Duane W. Greene
BA was applied at 50 or 100 mg·L-1 to `More-Spur McIntosh'/Malling 7 (M.7) apple trees [Malus sylvestris (L.) Mill var. domestica (Borkh.) Mansf.] at the 10 mm stage of fruit development. BA thinned fruit and increased fruit size. There were two distinguishable peaks of fruit abscission during `June drop'. BA accentuated the naturally occurring waves of fruit abscission, and enhanced translocation of 14C-sorbitol from leaves to fruit when applied directly to the fruit, but not when applied directly to the leaves. Net photosynthesis was decreased and dark respiration was increased when temperature following BA application was high (30 °C), whereas there was no effect when temperature was lower (20 °C). Total nonstructural carbohydrates, total soluble sugars, and starch in the leaves decreased dramatically over the 12- or 13-day observation period, regardless of BA treatment. These carbohydrate concentrations in the leaves were lowered further by BA application. Abscising fruit, based on specific reddening of the pedicel, had higher carbohydrate levels than persisting fruit, regardless of BA application. We conclude that BA thins fruit, at least in part, by increasing dark respiration and decreasing net photosynthesis. Chemical name used: N-(phenylmethyl)-1H-purine-6-amine [benzyladenine (BA)].
Rongcai Yuan and Duane W. Greene
Experiments were conducted to evaluate the effects of BA, removal of bourse shoot tips including only folded leaves and growing point, and different numbers of leaves per fruit on fruit retention and fruit development in `More-Spur McIntosh'/Malling 7 (M.7) apple trees [Malus sylvestris (L.) Mill var. domestica (Borkh.) Mansf.]. Removal of the bourse shoot tip increased fruit retention, whereas BA thinned fruit regardless of whether shoot tips were removed or not. There was no interaction between BA application and shoot tipping. BA thinned fruit only when one leaf per fruit was on a girdled small fruiting branch, but not when leaf number per fruit was two or greater. Fruit weight and soluble solids concentration increased dramatically with increasing leaf number per fruit. BA reduced fruit growth rate when <16 leaves per fruit were present on the girdled branches between 3 and 7 days after treatment, but it did not affect fruit growth rate when 32 leaves per fruit were on the girdled branches. Increasing leaf number also increased viable seed number per fruit while decreasing the number of aborted seeds, but it had no effect on the number of total seeds per fruit. BA reduced the number of viable seeds per fruit only when the number of leaves per fruit was less than four. Results suggest that BA thins apple fruit mainly by reducing carbohydrates available to developing fruitlets. Chemical name used: N-(phenylmethyl)-1H-purine-6-amine [benzyladenine (BA)].
Luisa Monte-Corvo, Luis Goulão, and Cristina Oliveira
Inter-simple sequence repeat (ISSR) markers were used for cultivar identification and for determination of the phenetic relationships among 24 pear cultivars (Pyrus communis L.). The ability of several molecular marker systems including randomly amplified polymorphic DNA (RAPD), amplified fragment length polymorphisms (AFLP), inter-simple sequence repeats (ISSR), simple sequence repeats (SSR), and selective amplification of microsatellite polymorphic loci (SAMPL) to detect variation among clones of the most significant Portuguese cultivar, Rocha, was also investigated. Each of the eight ISSR primers tested was able to distinguish the 24 pear cultivars. The ISSR primers generated 337 markers, 79.5% of which were polymorphic. The cultivar dendrogram obtained with the ISSR marker data was very similar to that obtained with previous RAPD+AFLP analysis, confirming the genetic divergence of `Pérola', `Carvalhal' and `Lawson' from the other cultivars. Eight out of 15 apple [Malus sylvestris (L.) Mill. var domestica (Borkh.) Mansf.] SSR primers tested also amplified microsatellites in pear. None of the five molecular marker systems analyzed (with a total of 1082 markers) detected reproducible polymorphisms among the nine `Rocha' clones, in spite of the presence of clear phenotypic differences.