Abbreviations: N A , N per unit leaf area; N w , leaf N concentration; SLW, specific leaf weight. 1 On sabbatic leave from the Institute of Horticulture, ARO, The Volcani Center, Bet-Dagan, 50250 Israel. 2 To whom all correspondence should be
Newly expanded interior canopy leaves of apple (Malus domestica Borkh.) had lower specific leaf weight (SLW), leaf thickness, palisade depth, and number of palisade cell layers than middle or peripheral leaves from late May to early October. Leaves on the periphery of the canopy had the highest SLW values at all sample dates. Differences in leaf SLW, leaf thickness, and palisade depth between interior and peripheral leaves increased as the season progressed, primarily due to increases in peripheral leaves that developed later in the season. Regression analysis showed SLW to be significantly correlated with leaf thickness and palisade depth.
`Redhaven' peach [Prunus persica (L.) Batsch] trees were shaded to five light levels [100%, 45%, 23%, 17%, and 9% photosynthetic photon flux (PPF)] for four different periods. Net photosynthesis (Pn), measured under the various shade levels, increased nonlinearly with increasing percent PPF. After 18 days of shading, specific leaf weight (SLW) was positively and linearly related to percent PPF. After shade removal, Pn and SLW returned to control levels in 26 and 4 days, respectively. Flower density was positively related to percent PPF when trees were shaded from 16 June to 4 July or 4-31 July, but not from 31 July to 30 Sept. of the previous year.
The effects of shading and leaf age on the production of foliar phenolics of two apple (Malus domestica Borkh.) cultivars, `Liberty' and `Red Rome Beauty', were studied. Potted trees were grown outdoors and their leaves tagged weekly when they reached 20 mm in length. This process continued for the duration of the experiment. At 3 weeks from budbreak, the trees were placed in three shade treatments: 0% shade (control), 60% shade, and 90% shade. After 5 weeks, the leaves were collected for phenolic assay. Specific leaf weight (SLW) was determined from the leaf below the tagged leaf. Shade significantly affected the total phenolic content. Leaves in 0% shade had the highest levels of total phenolics. The phenolic content decreased with increasing shade, with trees in 90% shade having a 72% reduction in total phenolics. There was a significant shade by leaf age interaction. There was a decrease in total phenolic content with increasing leaf age except for those leaves whose development occurred before the experiment was started. The 1-week-old leaf had the highest phenolic content, while 4-week-old leaf had the lowest amount. The 5- and 6-week-old leaves that had been tagged prior to the onset of the shade treatments has similar phenolic content in all treatment. SLW significantly decreased with increasing shade and increased with leaf age. Results of this study indicate that light and leaf developmental stage are important factors in the total foliar phenolic content, but, once phenolics are synthesized, shading does not affect their content.
Mature apple trees (Malus domestica Borkh.) were studied in the 1989 and 1990 seasons to explore the effect of differential crop load on fruit dry weight (DW), DW content, specific leaf weight, and leaf carbon exchange, using girdled and non-girdled limbs. Fruit DW and DW content decreased with heavier fruit loads, however, fruit on girdled limbs had higher fruit DW and DW content. Specific leaf weight did not differ in leaves on non-girdled limbs along the crop load gradient, but increased dramatically in leaves on girdled limbs with crop load lighter than one fruit per cm2 cross-sectional area. These leaves also had a low photosynthetic rate, high stomatal resistance, and high internal CO2 concentration. The results suggest a physiological limit for photoassimilate usage by the tree. Exceeding this limit by reducing sink strength resulted in excessive carbohydrate accumulation in leaves, causing physical damage to the photosystem.
There was no effect of rootstock on the net photosynthesis (Pn) of 1-year-old vegetative, containergrown ‘Delicious’ trees in 2 experiments. Rootstock effects on specific leaf weight (SLW) were slight in one experiment, and absent in another. There was no influence of rootstock on shoot growth, leaf number, transpiration rate (Tr) or dark respiration (Rd), each of which was determined in one experiment. These data fail to support reports of differences in Pn within a given cultivar on various rootstocks.
Eight different light treatments did not affect shoot length, leaf number, or total leaf area of young ‘Red Yorking’ apple (Malus pumila Mill.) trees grown in a greenhouse. Dry weights of leaves and stems were suppressed by 80% shade. Net photosynthesis (Pn), dark respiration (Rd), and specific leaf weight (SLW) were higher in sun than in shade leaves and adaptations in all 3 parameters occurred as a result of changing light conditions, even after leaf expansion had ceased.
One-year-old peach [Prunus persica (L.) Batsch cv. Redhaven] trees were grown outdoors under 4 different shade levels (100%, 36%, 21%, and 9% of full sun). Shoot length, internode length, and node number were unaffected by shade, but heavy shade (9% full sun) reduced stem diameter 24%. Compared to those in full sun, average leaf areas were increased 18%, 30%, and 20% by 36%, 21%, and 9% shade, respectively. Shading caused a more horizontal leaf orientation and lower specific leaf weight. Both average and maximum photosynthetic rate per unit area or per mg chlorophyll decreased with shading, but increased with shading when expressed per unit dry weight. Chlorophyll content per unit leaf area increased with shading, but stomatal resistance was unaffected. Leaves from shade treatments became light-saturated between 400 and 600 µEs-1m-2; full-sun leaves became light-saturated at 700-900 µEs-1m-2.
The effects of 80% shade from saran cloth and slats were very similar on young ‘Delicious’ apple (Malus domestica Borkh.) trees. Shoot-length increase was suppressed about 10% by shade but leaf area was unaffected. Dry weight increase for shaded trees was about 50% of that for trees in full sun. Sun leaves required about 43.1 klx for light saturation and shade leaves needed only about 19.4 klx. Net photosynthesis (Pn) of shade leaves was about 70% of that of sun leaves at light saturation. Dark respiration (Rd) rates were also higher in sun than shade-leaves. Specific leaf weight (SLW) of leaves near full expansion at the start of the experiment increased 15% under shade whereas sun-leaf SLW increased 40% during the experiment. For leaves unfolding under the differential light treatments, SLW of shade leaves averaged only 55% of sun leaves.
Photosynthesis, light (PAR) and transpiration were measured with an ADC portable infrared gas analyzer on apples and grapes. Measurements were taken on north and south sides of the rows, in the morning and afternoon, on sun and shade leaves, and with the leaf chamber in a horizontal position and in a natural leaf orientation position. Measurements were made on three cloudless days in August 1990 and 1991. Subsequently, fruit adjacent to sampled leaves were harvested and soluble solids determined. Sampled leaves were then harvested and leaf areas and dry weights measured. Correlation coefficients of variables were then subjected to analysis of variance to determine which techniques gave the best correlations. Grapes and apples responded differently. For grapes, soluble solids were most closely correlated to light and photosynthesis measurements when measured on south side shade leaves, while with apples, blush side soluble solids were best correlated with measurements on south side sun leaves in the afternoon. Specific leaf weight was best correlated to photosynthesis and light with grapes when measured on north side sun leaves and with apples when measured on the south side in the morning.