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Akiko Ito, Hideaki Yaegaki, Hiroko Hayama, Shinnosuke Kusaba, Isomaro Yamaguchi and Hirohito Yoshioka

Flower development of the lateral buds was accelerated in Japanese pear [Pyrus pyrifolia (Burm.) Nak.] when vertical shoots were bent at a 45° angle in late June. The indole-3-acetic acid (IAA) concentration in lateral buds on vertical (control) shoots increased in mid-July, while remaining nearly constant in bent shoots. The abscisic acid (ABA) concentration of buds in bent shoots rose between 4 July and 15 Aug., whereas control shoots exhibited an increase in concentration followed by a decline. Gibberellin4+7 (GA4+7) concentration was high on 16 June, and then declined by 4 July, with the decline being greatest in bent shoots. Gibberellin4+7 concentration was higher in the buds on vertical shoots than in those on bent shoots for much of July. The concentrations of zeatin-type cytokinins (CKs) in lateral buds were higher in bent shoots than in vertical shoots. Bending of pear shoots may weaken competition between buds and other organs through altering hormone levels in lateral buds, resulting in acceleration of flower development.

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Chikako Honda, Hideo Bessho, Mari Murai, Hiroshi Iwanami, Shigeki Moriya, Kazuyuki Abe, Masato Wada, Yuki Moriya-Tanaka, Hiroko Hayama and Miho Tatsuki

The objective of this study was to investigate the effects of temperature treatments on anthocyanin accumulation and ethylene production in the fruit of early- and medium-maturing cultivars that were harvested early during fruit ripening. We first investigated the effects of various temperature treatments on anthocyanin accumulation in detached apples of ‘Tsugaru’, ‘Tsugaru Hime’, ‘Akane’ and ‘Akibae’ using an incubator. Three years of experiments demonstrated that at harvest, the lower-temperature treatments induced anthocyanin accumulation in ‘Tsugaru’, ‘Tsugaru Hime’, and ‘Akibae’ fruits, whereas the increases in anthocyanin accumulation under the 25 °C treatment were similar to those under the 15 and 20 °C treatments in ‘Akane’ fruit. The rate of ethylene production did not increase substantially during the temperature treatments in any of the four cultivars, except after the treatments of ‘Tsugaru’ fruit at harvest. The inhibition of ethylene action by the application of 1-methylcyclopropene (1-MCP) to detached fruits at harvest suppressed anthocyanin development under 15 and 20 °C temperature treatments in ‘Tsugaru’, ‘Tsugaru Hime’, and ‘Akibae’, but not in ‘Akane’. In the second experiment, we investigated changes in the anthocyanin concentration in attached fruit of ‘Misuzu Tsugaru’ under different temperature conditions in a greenhouse. At harvest, the anthocyanin concentration in fruit under the hotter climatic condition (29 °C 12 hours/19 °C 12 hours) was lower than that under the control condition (25 °C 12 hours/15 °C 12 hours). During the last week before harvest, anthocyanin development proceeded rapidly in fruit skin not only under the control condition, but also under the hotter climatic condition. The rapid accumulation of anthocyanin in the fruit skin of ‘Misuzu Tsugaru’ at harvest under a relatively high temperature (25 °C) condition was confirmed by the experiment using an incubator. At harvest, the maximum level of ethylene production in fruits sampled from trees grown under the hotter climatic condition was 9-fold higher than that in fruits from trees grown under the control condition. These results indicate that the comparison of pigmentation potential after the 15 or 25 °C treatments using detached fruit was effective for estimating anthocyanin accumulation in fruit skins under hotter climatic conditions in early- and medium-maturing cultivars that were harvested early and that a hotter climatic condition during ripening increased ethylene production in apple fruit after harvest.