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D.I. Leskovar, J.C. Ward and A. Meiri

109 ORAL SESSION 28 (Abstr. 572–579) Fruit Set & Seed Quality–Vegetables

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A. Maaike Wubs, Yuntao Ma, Lia Hemerik and Ep Heuvelink

-growing fruits, this leads to alternating periods of high and low fruit set. These fluctuations in fruit set are believed to be the cause of cyclic fluctuations in fruit yield. Irregular fruit yield causes difficulties in the planning of activities throughout the

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Chunxian Chen, William R. Okie and Thomas G. Beckman

brown and abscise, and can dramatically affect peach fruit set ( Rieger et al., 1991 ; Smith et al., 1994 ). A late spring frost can wipe out an entire peach crop. A mild spring frost may be helpful by thinning the fruitlets naturally, because many

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Carlos Miranda, Luis G. Santesteban and José B. Royo

The apical or king (K) flower in the apple (Malus ×domestica L. Borkh.) cluster usually develops and blooms first and also has a greater sink potential. For this reason, resources are primarily used by the K fruit, and this is also one of the reasons why most thinning practices tend to favor K fruit set. However, it is not always possible to retain the K flower and remove the lateral ones. This study was undertaken to determine if the removal of the most developed flowers in the cluster influences yield or quality compared to that obtained in a whole cluster. The treatments were made in `Golden Delicious' and `Royal Gala' apple cultivars, within a wide range of flower densities for each cultivar. The factor tested was the intensity of flower removal (FRI); the treatments consisted in removing one, two, or three flowers in each cluster. Flower density was used as a covariate in an analysis of covariance to account for differences in flower densities in response to FRI treatments. In all experiments the covariate was not significant; therefore FRI effect was not affected by flower density. `Golden Delicious' and `Royal Gala' had similar responses to flower removal, so that when at least three flowers in a cluster remained, fruit set and cluster yield were similar to whole clusters. Only when two or fewer poorly developed flowers remained after FRI treatments, yield was reduced by as much as 25%. Fruit from FRI clusters were even heavier than those from whole clusters, due to reduced competition among the fruit, so that the growth potential of fruit from the first and second lateral flowers was similar to clusters with K fruit, in clusters where the K flower had been removed.

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Khalil R. Jahed and Peter M. Hirst

Pollination is an essential process for fruit set, fruit growth, fruit quality, and seed set of most apple cultivars. The first step of successful apple pollination is the transfer of pollen to the stigmatic surface (typically vectored by bees

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Carlos Miranda, Luis G. Santesteban and José B. Royo

The lowest flower in the pear (Pyrus communis L.) cluster usually develops and blooms first and also has a greater sink potential. For this reason, resources are preferentially utilized by the lowest fruit, and this is also one of the reasons why most thinning practices tend to favor their set. However, it is not always possible to perform selective thinning. This study was undertaken to determine if hindering pollination in the most developed flowers in the cluster influences yield or quality compared to that obtained in a whole open-pollinated cluster. The treatments were made in `Blanquilla' (Spadona, Agua de Aranjuez) and `Conference' pear within a wide range of flower densities for each cultivar. Pollination was hindered by cutting off the flower styles. The factor tested was style removal intensity (SRI). Treatments consisted in removing the styles of two, four(always the most developed), or all flowers in each cluster. Flower density was used as a covariate in an analysis of covariance to account for differences in flower densities in response to SRI treatments. In all experiments the covariate was not significant; therefore, SRI effect was not affected by flower density. `Blanquilla' and `Conference' had similar responses to treatments, so that when at least three flowers are susceptible to be openly pollinated, fruit set, seed content, and cluster yield were similar to control clusters, therefore the growth potential of fruit from partially damaged clusters in their most developed flowers is similar to undamaged open pollinated clusters. The reduced set of parthenocarpic clusters implies yield reductions ranging between 40% and 60% in `Conference', and up to about 60% in `Blanquilla'.

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María Engracia Guerra, Ana Wünsch, Margarita López-Corrales and Javier Rodrigo

; Okie, 2006 ). However, some japanese plum-type cultivars are particularly prone to erratic fruit set showing very low or even null fruit set for reasons that are not clear ( Hartmann and Neümuller, 2009 ; Okie and Weinberger, 1996 ). When no apparent

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Duane W. Greene

production, including flower bud formation, fruit set, fruit quality, physiological disorders, pest management, and postharvest fruit life. Various methods of growth control have been practiced in the past ( Greene, 2003 ; Miller, 1988 ). The widespread

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María Engracia Guerra, Ana Wünsch, Margarita López-Corrales and Javier Rodrigo

; Okie and Ramming, 1999 ; Okie and Weinberger, 1996 ; Weinberger, 1975 ). However, many crosses made by emasculation have resulted in very low fruit set or not fruit set at all ( Okie and Hancock, 2008 ; Okie and Weinberger, 1996 ). A negative effect

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Sergio Tombesi, Bruce D. Lampinen, Samuel Metcalf and Theodore M. DeJong

( Heerema, 2005 ) and that in many species the percent of flowers on a spur that produce fruit (spur relative fruit set) is largely influenced by spur light exposure and spur leaf area ( Stephenson, 1981 ), relative fruit set could be limited in spurs