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J.T. Payne and C.E. Johnson

Twenty-six muscadine cultigens were evaluated for fruit size, color, soluble solids, and other horticultural characteristics pertaining to fresh market use. Seventeen cultigens were evaluated for 7 years and 9 were evaluated for 2 years. Entries with the largest fruit size were `Granny Vale', `GA 33-1-4', `Sweet Jenny', and `Black Fry' with fruit weights averaging over 10.5 grams each. `Summit', `GA 33-1-4' `Sweet Jenny', `Fry', `Dixieland', and `GA 9-4-1' were consistently over 17% soluble solids during the years of this study. The yield per vine was highest on `Watergate', `Carlos', `Summit', `Higgins', and `Redgate'. The highest average yield was 30.0 kg per vine on `Watergate'. Recently released cultivars `Black Fry', `Black Beauty', and `Granny Vale' exhibited extremely good characteristics for the fresh market industry.

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E.W. Bush and J.T. Payne

Container-grown `Formosa' azalea plants were affected by irrigation water quality. Sodium (200 ppm), supplied by NaHCO3 and NaCl, inhibited plant growth and diminished plant quality. Observable symptoms were tip-burn, marginal necrosis, leaf curling, and eventual defoliation. There was a negative relationship between leaf tissue calcium and magnesium and higher rates of sodium from NaHCO3. Leaf tissue Cl levels were higher in the higher NaCl treatments. Sodium treatments inhibited root growth. Plants in NaHCO3 treatments accumulated more Na than did plants in NaCl treatments. Media pH and sodium levels following 12 months of sodic irrigation far exceeded acceptable levels for producing marketable container-grown `Formosa' azalea plants.

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J.T. Payne and Charles E. Johnson

Influence on productivity of `Harvester' peach trees to three methods of preplant soil preparation were studied for five years. The three methods were as follows: 1) a backhoe was used to prepare the soil, 2) a turn-plow, and 3) no preparation. Trunk yield data were taken after the first three growing seasons. There were no significant treatment differences for yield at the .05 level of probability. Trends show an increase in yield using the turn-plow and the backhoe method showed better early tree growth, but by the fifth year, there were no apparent differences.

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Charles J. Graham, James T. Payne, and Eric J. Molnar

Increasing cell volume or pretransplant nutrient conditioning (PNC) reduced the time to flowering for staminate and pistillate flowers in watermelon [Citrullus lanatus (Thunb.) Matsum. & Nakai]. Larger cell volumes increased the number of early harvested watermelons and average watermelon weight in two of three studies. Similarly, larger cell volume increased the early and total yield per area of watermelons harvested in 1995 and 1998, but not in 1997. Effect of transplant cell volume on soluble solids varied seasonally. PNC increased the number of melons and the yield per area harvested early in 1995 and soluble solids in early harvested fruit in 1997, but had no significant effect on total `Jubilee' watermelon size or total production in Louisiana for 1995, 1997, or 1998. PNC offers the transplant grower little advantage, while increasing transplant cell size provides a grower with a better opportunity to produce increased early and total yields.

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C.E. Johnson, J.T. Payne, and K.C. Pee

Controlled crosses of a Vermillion red flesh color cultivar with 4 normal red flesh color cultivars were made. F1, F2, and backcross generations were grown in the field and the fruits evaluated for flesh color. All fruits of the F1 generation were Vermillion. The F2 generation segregated to a 9:7 ratio of vermillion to normal in all crosses. The probabilities of fit ranged from 0.10 to 0.95. This ratio is indicative of two dominant genes with complementary effects or double recessive epistasis, Backcrosses to the dominant parent produced almost all vermillion flesh fruit. Backcrosses to the recessive parents did not fit any documented ratios. Further analysis of the BC generations seems to suggest that flesh color is controlled by two dominant genes.

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C.E. Johnson, J.T. Payne, and K.C. Pee

Controlled crosses of a Vermillion red flesh color cultivar with 4 normal red flesh color cultivars were made. F1, F2, and backcross generations were grown in the field and the fruits evaluated for flesh color. All fruits of the F1 generation were Vermillion. The F2 generation segregated to a 9:7 ratio of vermillion to normal in all crosses. The probabilities of fit ranged from 0.10 to 0.95. This ratio is indicative of two dominant genes with complementary effects or double recessive epistasis, Backcrosses to the dominant parent produced almost all vermillion flesh fruit. Backcrosses to the recessive parents did not fit any documented ratios. Further analysis of the BC generations seems to suggest that flesh color is controlled by two dominant genes.

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T.J. Facteau, N.E. Chestnut, K.E. Rowe, and C. Payne

Gibberellic acid-treated `Napoleon' sweet cherry (Prunus avium L.) fruit were firmer but lost more weight during brining than nontreated fruit. GA treatment delayed fruit softening, thereby extending the harvest period. Mean fruit weight was increased by GA only in fruit harvested at a more mature state. GA delayed soluble solids accumulation in one of two years. In one orchard district, solution pockets were less frequent in GA -treated fruit in 1988 and in late-harvested GA -treated fruit in 1989. GA treatment did not alter the incidence of fruit with solution pockets in a second district in 1988 and increased levels of solution pockets in fruit harvested later in 1989. Incidence of fruit with solution pockets increased as maturity progressed in nontreated fruit in both years and both districts. Chemical name used: gibberellic acid (G A).

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C.E. Johnson, J.T. Payne, W.A. Young, and E.W. Bush

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C.E. Johnson, J.T. Payne, W.A. Young, D.H. Picha, and W.R. Okie

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C.E. Johnson, J.T. Payne, M.L. Robbins, and W.A. Young