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  • Author or Editor: Wayne B. Sherman x
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Abstract

A 10-year analysis of the high-density nursery (HDN) in the breeding of low-chilling peach and nectarine [Prunus persica (L.) Batsch] cultivars indicated selection was effective during the first cropping year for chilling requirement, fruit development period, size, color, shape and firmness but not for crop load, which needs to be evaluated at normal spacing over several years. The HDN system effectively has advanced the breeding program by promoting short generation time, reducing labor and space, and allowing for rating of some characters within 2 years from seed.

Open Access

Abstract

Starch gel electrophoresis of leaf tissue samples was used to distinguish pineapple [Ananas comosus (L.) Merr.] cultivars. Isozyme genotypes at two peroxidase and three phosphoglucomutase loci allowed the unique identification of 15 of the 27 cultivars examined. The hypotheses that some cultivars originated as either sports or hybrids were confirmed by the allozyme data.

Open Access

Poncirus trifoliata (L.) Raf. seeds were germinated in perlite under intermittent mist at about 25 °C and natural daylight in a greenhouse. Two-week-old seedlings were then transferred into a growth chamber at 25 °C and 16-hour daylength for 1 week. Tissue samples were collected at 0, 6, 24, 168, and 504 hours after temperature equilibration at 10 °C. Freezing tolerance at –6.7 °C, as determined by electrolyte leakage, and stem (leaves attached) water potential (ψx), measured using a pressure chamber, was recorded for a subset of seedlings for each time interval. Red coloration (apparently anthocyanin) developed at the petiole leaflet junction and buds after 48 hours at 10 °C and gradually occurred throughout the leaves during further exposure. Complementary DNA clones for phenylalanine ammonia lyase (PAL), 4-coumarate: coA ligase (4CL), and chalcone synthase (CHS) were used to probe RNA isolated from the leaves. No increase in steady-state messenger RNA level was detected. Increases in freeze hardiness occurred within 6 hours in the leaves, and continued for up to 1 week. Water potential initially decreased from –0.6 to –2.0 MPa after 6 hours, then returned to –0.6 MPa after 1 week. Thus, Poncirus trifoliata seedlings freeze-acclimate significantly after only 6 hours at 10 °C.

Free access

Poncirus trifoliata is a comparatively hardy, cross compatible, and graft compliant relative of Citrus. The citrus industry in Florida has suffered immense economic losses due to freezes. Although much research has been done in citrus freeze hardiness, little work has been on the early induction of freeze tolerance by low temperature. Poncirus trifoliata `Rubidoux' seedlings were germinated in perlite under intermittent mist at about 25°C and natural daylight conditions in a greenhouse and grown 2 weeks. See dlings were then transferred into a growth chamber at 25°C and 16 hour daylength for 1 week. Temperature was lowered to 10°C and tissue samples were collected at 0, 6, 24, and 168 hours. Freezing tolerance, at –6.7°C as determined by electrolyte leakage, and stem (leaves attached) water potential, measured using a pressure bomb, were also recorded for a subset of seedlings for the above intervals. After exposure to low temperature for 48 hours a red coloration became visible at the petiole leaflet junction an d at the buds, with subsequent exposure to low temperature the coloration spread to the leaves. Clones for phenylalanine ammonia lyase (PAL), 4-coumarate:CoA ligase (4CL), and chlorophyll ab binding protein (CAB), and chalcone synthase (CHS) were used to probe RNA isolated from P. trifoliata. PAL and 4CL transcripts increased in response to the low temperature. Significant increases in freeze hardiness occurred within 6 hours in the leaves, and increases continued for up to one week. Water potential increased from –0.6 to –2.0 MPa after 6 hours, then returned to –0.6 MPa after 1 week. These data indicate that increases in freezing tolerance and changes in water potential and gene expression can be detected shortly after low temperature treatments are imposed on P. trifoliata seedlings.

Free access

Potential maturity indices were determined for two melting-flesh (FL 90-20 and Tropic Beauty) and two nonmelting-flesh (Oro A and Fl 86-28 C) peach cultivars. A range of developmental stages was obtained by conducting two harvests and separating fruit based on their diameter. Fruit in each category were divided into two groups. One group was used for determining potential maturity indices: soluble solids, titratable acidity, soluble solids: titratable acidity, peel and flesh color on the cheeks (CH) and blossom end (BE), CH and BE texture, ethylene production, and respiration rate. The other group was stored at 0°C for 1 week and ripened at 20°C for 2 days to simulate actual handling conditions, and were presented to a trained sensory panel, which rated the fruit for three textural (hardness, rubberiness, and juiciness) and three flavor aspects (sweetness; sourness; bitterness; and green, peachy, and overripe character). Principal component (PC) analysis was used to consolidate the results of the descriptive sensory evaluation into a single variable that could be correlated with the objective measurements at harvest. The first overall PC explained 40% of the total variation. Following are the attributes that best correlated with PC 1 and, thus, are promising maturity indices: for FL 90-20, peel hue, peel L, and CH texture; for Tropic Beauty, peel L, CH texture, and BE texture; for Oro A, CH texture, BE texture, and CH chroma; for 86-28C, BE texture, CH hue, and CH texture.

Free access

The notion that ethylene production levels in nonmelting-flesh (NMF) peach (Prunus persica L.) fruit are normally lower than those in melting-flesh (MF) fruit is refuted in our study. In fact, NMF fruit (`Oro A' and FL 86-28C) usually produced higher levels of ethylene than did MF fruit (FL 90-20 and `TropicBeauty'). In both MF and NMF peaches, the rate of ethylene production, rather than the respiration rate, provided a good indication of the developmental stage of the fruit at harvest. Ethylene content in fruit on the tree followed a climacteric pattern, with the level in `Oro A' (NMF) and FL 90-20 (MF) peaking at 50 and 12 μL·L–1, respectively. The respiratory climacteric was not apparent in either `Oro A' or FL 90-20, and levels of CO2 were similar in both genotypes.

Free access

Potential maturity indices were determined for two melting-flesh (FL 90-20 and `TropicBeauty') and two nonmelting-flesh (`Oro A'and Fl 86-28C) peach [Prunus persica (L.) Batsch.] genotypes. A range of developmental stages was obtained by conducting two harvests and separating the fruit based on diameter. Fruit in each category were divided into two groups. One group was used to determine potential maturity indices: soluble solids, titratable acidity, soluble solids to titratable acidity ratio, peel and flesh color on the cheeks and blossom end, cheek and blossom-end firmness, ethylene production, and respiration rate. The other group was stored at 0 °C for 1 week and ripened at 20 °C for 2 days to simulate handling conditions and presented to a trained sensory panel, which rated the fruit for three textural aspects (hardness, rubberiness, and juiciness) and six flavor aspects (sweetness, sourness, bitterness, and green, peachy, and overripe character). Principal component (PC) analysis was used to consolidate the results of the descriptive sensory evaluation into a single variable that could be correlated with the objective measurements at harvest. The attributes that best correlated with the first sensory PC of each genotype, and thus are promising maturity indices, were as follows: for FL 90-20, peel hue, peel L, and cheek firmness; for `TropicBeauty', peel L, cheek firmness, and blossom-end firmness; for `Oro A', cheek firmness, blossom-end firmness, and cheek chroma; and for 86-28C, blossom-end firmness, cheek hue, and cheek firmness.

Free access

A study to compare the response to postharvest chilling (4 °C) for up to 3 weeks of melting-flesh (MF)—FL 90-20, FL 90-21W, and FL 91-16—and nonmelting-flesh (NMF)—`Oro A', FL 90-35C, and FL 90-47C—peach (Prunus persica L.) genotypes revealed that MF fruit were notably more susceptible to the development of mealiness than NMF types. Cell separation in mealy fruit was demonstrated by the release of mesocarp cells to an aqueous medium, allowing determination of mealiness severity. At a histological level, chilling brought about an impressive expansion of the intercellular spaces in MF mesocarp tissue but did not affect NMF fruit. A decrease in flesh electrical resistance after 1 week of chilling was observed only in MF fruit. However, electrical resistance increased in MF and NMF fruit following 2 and 3 weeks at 4 °C. Electrical resistance also decreased with ripening of MF fruit but did not change when NMF fruit were ripened. Unlike NMF fruit, the MF genotypes FL 90-21W and FL 91-16 showed an increase in respiration rate due to chilling. The rate of ethylene production decreased after 1 week at 4 °C in MF and NMF genotypes. However, two MF and two NMF genotypes exhibited rising ethylene levels after the second week of storage at 4 °C, while ethylene production in one MF and one NMF genotype continued to decline.

Free access