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  • Author or Editor: Steven M. Olson x
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`Colonial' tomato (Lycopersicon esculentum Mill.) plants were grown on raised beds with black polyethylene mulch, drip irrigation, and preplant-N rates of 0, 67, 134, 202, or 269 kg·ha-1. Petiole sap was collected 7 and 13 weeks after transplanting. Concentrations of NO3-N, free amino acids, total amino acids, and total-N (the sum of NO3-N and amino acid-N) were examined as functions of the rate of N fertilization. Also, each of these compounds was used as an independent variable as a predictor of fruit yield. Seven weeks after planting, the concentrations of NO3-N and 15 of 18 of the free amino acids were correlated with the rate of N fertilization, but concentrations of bound or total amino acids were not. The amount of NO3-N accounted for 37% of the total-N in the 0 kg·ha-1 treatment, and up to 83% in the 202 kg·ha-1 treatment. NO3-N was highly correlated with total-N for both nonhydrolyzed and hydrolyzed sap (R 2 = 0.98). Thirteen weeks after transplanting, neither the concentration of NO3-N nor that of amino acids, other than asparagine, glutamine, and proline, were significantly related to the rate of N fertilization. On both dates, concentrations of glutamine plus glutamic acid were correlated with rate of N fertilization whether expressed as absolute values or as percentage values. N fertilization rate and the concentration of NO3-N or total-N were related to total fruit yield (R 2 = 0.69 to 0.74), and marketable fruit yield (R 2 = 0.78 to 0.82). N-fertilization rate and petiole sap concentrations of NO3-N or total-N were also correlated with the N contained in total or marketable yield. Petiole sap variables measured 13 weeks after transplanting were not significantly correlated with fruit yield or the quantity of N contained in the fruit. Free, bound, or total amino acids in petiole sap were not as well correlated with fruit yield parameters as were N-fertilization rate, NO3-N, or total-N in petiole sap.

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Carbon and nitrogen budgets were determined for `Colonial' (spring) and `Equinox' (fall) tomato (Lycopersicon esculentum Mill.) plants grown on raised beds with black polyethylene mulch and supplied with preplant-N at 0, 67, 134, 202, or 269 kg·ha–1. For both spring and fall experiments, we quantified the partitioning of dry matter, N, and C, and determined marketable and total yield. In the spring study, the concentration of N in leaves, stems, and in total plants increased linearly with level of N fertilization, whereas a quadratic relationship described the amount of N contained in the fruit (maximum with 202 kg·ha–1). Quadratic relationships occurred between rate of fertilization and leaf weight, stem weight, total plant weight, marketable yield, and total yield in the spring study, with maximum values at 134 or 202 kg·ha–1 rates of N fertilization. In the fall crop, fewer significant relationships occurred between dependent variables and rate of N fertilization, and coefficients of determination tended to be much lower than in the spring study. The fraction of N in leaves, stems, and roots (fall study only) was influenced by N fertilization. Effects of N fertilization on the fraction of C partitioned to any plant part was either nonsignificant or significant at P = 0.05. Total yield was related to N fertilization in a quadratic manner, but marketable yield was significantly affected only in the spring study. In both studies, increasing the rate of N fertilization reduced the C: N linearly for all tissues. In all cases, the quantity of N partitioned to vegetative tissue was at least 65% of that partitioned to the fruit, and the quantity of C in the plant was at least 74% of that in the fruit. In conclusion, although N fertilization above 202 kg·ha–1 generally increased the concentration and total amount of N in vegetative tissues, it did not increase yield. Also, the highest rate of N fertilization (269 kg·ha–1) resulted in a much lower efficiency of applied N [defined as: (N plant + N fruit)/N applied], and a much higher level of residual soil nitrate-N.

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Seven hybrid tomato rootstocks with possible resistance to bacterial wilt caused by Ralstonia solanacearum and a known resistant cultivar were tested as grafting rootstocks to impart resistance to a bacterial wilt-susceptible cultivar, BHN 602. Greenhouse studies showed resistance of all the rootstocks to bacterial wilt. The disease incidence and yield of ‘BHN 602’ grafted to these rootstocks were evaluated in open-field tomato production in Florida and Virginia over four seasons. Significant differences in bacterial wilt incidence were observed between grafted entries in three of the four trials. In these three trials, grafted entries consistently exhibited the least bacterial wilt incidence compared with the controls; the self-graft, and non-grafted entries. Over all the trials, tomato plants grafted onto ‘Cheong Gang’, ‘BHN 1054’, and ‘BHN 998’ displayed the least bacterial wilt incidence. Rootstocks had a significant effect on total marketable yield in all the trials with certain grafted entries yielding significantly greater than non-grafted ‘BHN 602’. Field studies show that grafting holds promise for decreasing the impact of bacterial wilt on tomato cultivars as well as increasing the overall productivity of tomato cultivars.

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Field studies were conducted in three Florida locations (Bradenton, Gainesville, and Quincy) during 1998-99 and 1999-2000 to: 1) compare the performance of two transplant systems under diverse MBr alternative programs in `Chandler' strawberry (Fragaria ×ananassa), and 2) determine the efficacy of these treatments on soilborne pest control in strawberry. Fumigant treatments were: 1) nonfumigated control, 2) methyl bromide plus chloropicrin (MBr + Pic) at a rate of 350 lb/acre, 3) Pic at 300 lb/acre and napropamide at 4 lb/acre, 4) 1,3-dichloropropene (1,3-D) plus Pic at 35 gal/acre and napropamide at 4 lb/acre, 5) metam sodium (MNa) at 60 gal/acre and napropamide at 4 lb/acre, and 6) MNa followed by 1,3-D at 60 and 12 gal/acre and napropamide at 4 lb/acre, respectively. Strawberry transplants were either bare-root or containerized plugs. There were no significant fumigant by transplant type interactions for strawberry plant vigor and root weight per plant, whereas ring nematode (Criconema spp.) and nutsedge (Cyperus rotundus and C. esculentus) populations, and total marketable fruit weight were only infl uenced by fumigant application. The nonfumigated plots had the lowest strawberry plant vigor and root weight per plant in all three locations. In most cases, plant vigor and root biomass per plant increased as a response to any fumigant application. With regard to the transplant type, bare-root transplants had similar plant vigor as plugs in two of the three locations. Fumigation improved nutsedge and ring nematode control. All fumigants had higher early and total marketable yield than the nonfumigated control, whereas transplant type had no effect on total fruit weight.

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