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  • Author or Editor: James N. Moore x
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Root cuttings of A-1836, APF-13, and NC194 primocane-fruiting (PF) blackberry (Rubus subgenus Rubus) genotypes were dug from the field on 31 July 1997 and stored in plastic bags at 2 °C for 32 days. On 1 Sept. freshly dug root cuttings, along with the cold-treated ones, were planted in pots, which were kept in a lath house for 4 weeks and then moved to a heated greenhouse under natural daylength. Cold-treatment hastened emergence of all genotypes. Transition from vegetative to floral phase was first observed in cold-treated A-1836 and APF-13 at the fifth node, with floral appendages clearly evident in both genotypes at the seventh node 45 days after planting (DAP). Bloom started on 26 Nov. and 5 Dec. 1997 and the first fruits were picked on 10 and 25 Jan. 1998 in cold-treated APF-13 and A-1836, respectively. Plants of cold-treated NC194 and of all non-cold-treated genotypes remained stunted with rosetted leaves, showing no signs of floral initiation until 150 DAP. These findings show that exposure to chilling prior to shoot emergence greatly promotes flowering in PF blackberries, and may have application in greenhouse culture of blackberry.

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`Jupiter' is the fifth table grape cultivar released from the Univ. of Arkansas grape breeding program. `Jupiter' originated from a cross of Ark. 1258 × Ark. 1672 made in 1981. The original seedling vine was selected in 1984, and `Jupiter' was tested as Ark. 1985. `Jupiter' was tested at two locations in Arkansas (Fayetteville and Clarksville) and at West Lafayette, Ind. Fruit of `Jupiter' are reddish-blue, and berry weight averaged 5.5 g over 12 years of evaluation at Clarksville. Fruit are seedless, have a non-slipskin texture, ripen early mid-season, and averaged 19.8% soluble solids. Flavor is a mild muscat, a noteworthy character of this new cultivar. Clusters averaged 257 g over 12 years and are well-filled. Yields of `Jupiter' have been very good, exceeding 29 t/ha at Clarksville. Hardiness of `Jupiter' was greater than `Einset Seedless', `Himrod', or `Vanessa Seedless', but less than `Mars' or `Reliance' at West Lafayette. `Jupiter' is recommended for trial where other other eastern U.S. table grape cultivars are adapted.

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In an early study we reported the feasibility of propagating erect blackberries by floricane cuttings obtained during winter pruning. But how soon during the dormant season can the stem cuttings be collected? And, is a mist system really needed to promote rooting? Experiments were conducted to address these questions. Stem cuttings of `Arapaho', `Choctaw', and `Shawnee' blackberries were collected on two dates, 15 Nov. and 15 Dec. 1996, stuck in peat-perlite mix, and placed in two rooting environments, with and without intermittent mist. Data was recorded on 15 Jan. 1997. Percentage of cuttings rooted was affected by the cultivar-by-date and cultivar-by-environment interactions. Values of 98%, 88%, and 75% were observed for cuttings taken on 15 Dec. of `Choctaw', `Arapaho', and `Shawnee', respectively, while only 19%, 17%, and 45%, respectively, for cuttings of 15 Nov. Intermittent mist promoted higher rooting (85% vs. 31% without mist) and lower death of cuttings (4% vs. 45% without mist) only of `Shawnee'. Greater number of cuttings died when taken on 15 Nov. (21%) than on 15 Dec.(6%). These findings suggest that accumulation of chilling units is an important factor to take into consideration when propagating blackberries by floricane cuttings.

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An experiment was carried out to investigate whether detached segments of floricanes during winter pruning of erect blackberries could be used as a source of propagating material. Portions of lateral branches from `Arapaho', `Navaho', `Choctaw', and `Shawnee' field-grown plants, subdivided according to their position on the cane (tip, middle, and base), and treated with or without 0.3% IBA in talc were stuck in peat—perlite mix under intermittent mist in greenhouse conditions. Differences in percentage of cuttings rooted occurred only for cultivars; `Arapaho' rooting the highest (99%) and `Shawnee' the lowest (83%). IBA improved volume of roots formed. Cultivar by position interaction effect was evident for volume of roots, percentage survival of cuttings after potting, percentage shoot formation, and dry weight of shoots and roots, with highest values for stem cuttings taken from the middle of canes of `Arapaho' and lowest for basal cuttings of `Shawnee'. `Choctaw' stem cuttings produced the largest shoots regardless of their position or treatment with IBA. These findings suggest that propagation of erect blackberries by floricane stem cuttings is feasible. This work might be useful to plant breeding, either for early collection of pollen or in controlled pollinations.

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