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  • Author or Editor: D. Kirschbaum x
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The present research was undertaken to examine carbohydrate composition and distribution patterns and induction of flowering and runner formation in attached and detached strawberry plants grown under varying temperature conditions. There was an interaction between attached mother and daughter plants. Daughter plants affected flowering in mother plants, and mother plants influenced vegetative growth in daughter plants. Attachment and high temperature decreased root soluble carbohydrate concentration and promoted runner formation in both mother and daughter attached plants, suggesting that changes in carbohydrate concentration in the roots may be correlated with changes in vegetative growth. According to the results of this research, high temperatures are likely to enhance vegetative growth, whereas lower temperatures are likely to enhance the floral response. Differential temperature regimes applied to the mother/daughter plant experimental system could be an alternative to photoperiod treatments as a tool to study the correlation between environmental conditions and changes in vegetative and reproductive growth in strawberry.

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The pattern of total nonstructural carbohydrate [starch and soluble sugars (TNC)] accumulation in strawberry (Fragaria ×ananassa Duch.) nursery runner plants, cv. Camarosa, was determined for three growing seasons. A similar study was conducted on `Selva', but for only one year. Growth, development and fruit production patterns of plants transplanted to growth chambers (GC) or fruiting fields were also evaluated. The experiments were carried out on plants propagated in high latitude (41°50' N) nurseries in California (Siskiyou County). Plants were sampled beginning late summer through early autumn and analyzed for dry mass (DM) and TNC. Plants from different digging dates were established in GC or fruit evaluation plots in Irvine, Calif. (33°39'N). Initial TNC concentration in storage tissues at the time of nursery digging increased steadily from the second week of September to the third week of October. Crown and root TNC concentration and content were correlated positively with the accumulation of chilling units (CU = hours ≤7.2 °C) in the nursery. Root TNC concentration consistently increased from 6% to 10% DM in `Camarosa' (a short-day cultivar), and from ∼4% to 14% DM in `Selva' (a day-neutral cultivar) from mid-September to the first week of October. The root TNC content increased ∼2.5 times in `Camarosa' and ∼3.7 times in `Selva' during the same period. Transplant growth, development, and fruiting pattern were affected by digging date. Root TNC concentration and content were more sensitive to CU accumulation than crown TNC concentration and content. Therefore, root sampling appeared to be more appropriate than crown sampling for assessing the carbohydrate status and optimal digging dates of strawberry nursery runner plants early in the fall.

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