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Abstract

Vapor Gard (VG), a polymer of β-pinene applied at concentrations of 1.5 or 2.5% (by volume to rabbit-eye blueberries (Vaccinium ashei Reade) influenced leaf temperatures, water balances, berry weight, and time of fruit harvest of plants with and without drip irrigation. A 2.5% VG spray uniformly covered entire leaves and increased midday xylem pressure potentials (Ψ×) by 50% and leaf resistances (r1) by 400%, decreased transpiration (T) by 80%, raised average leaf temperature by 2.2°C and resulted in phytotoxicity and leaf drop. A 1.5% spray did not significantly increase Ψx but doubled r1 and decreased Τ by 60% with no toxicity symptoms. When all cultivars are combined, the 1.5% spray applied to plants with and without irrigation increased berry weight by 31 and 17% but delayed berry maturation and decreased percentage total soluble solids of mature berries by 26 and 24%, respectively. Vapor Gard did not significantly change yields when used alone.

Open Access

Abstract

Hexaploid Vaccinium hybrid progenies, including F1, F1 intercross, F1 × F2, BC1, BC1 intercross, and BC1 × F2 crosses between V. ashei Reade and V. constablaei Gray, and an intercross between late-blooming V. ashei genotypes, established in the commercial blueberry production area in eastern North Carolina, were compared among themselves and with 2 highbush blueberry (V. corymbosum L.) cultivars for flowering, ripening, primary mummy berry infection, crop, and fruit characteristics. There were significant differences among progenies for all traits, with sufficient variability for selection within most progenies. Differences reflected specific parent combinations rather than type of cross with the V. ashei–V. constablaei derivative progenies. The experiment included both V. ashei and V. ashei–V. constablaei derivative progenies that produced a high percentage of seedlings flowering with or later than highbush blueberries. Two percent of the V. ashei–V. constablaei derivative seedlings bloomed and ripened with the early ripening highbush cultivar ‘Croatan’. Crop ratings were variable in all progenies, and high sds for the cultivars indicated that a high percentage of the variation was environmental. Primary mummy berry infection significantly reduced the crop in several progenies but was not responsible for the poor overall crop performance of most. Mean fruit size of the V. ashei intercross was large enough for hand harvest, while all but the 2 smallest-fruited V. ashei- V. constablaei derivative progenies were large enough for mechanical harvesting. Fruit of most progenies were commercially acceptable for color, picking scar, firmness, and flavor.

Open Access

), moderate vigor, and a nonsuckering growth habit. Its fruit are small, aromatic, not objectionably seedy, and can have very good quality. Vaccinium ashei is a hexaploid species traditionally grown commercially in southern areas with mild winters

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Plants of `Brightwell' and `Tifblue' rabbiteye blueberry (Vaccinium ashei Reade) were subjected to 0, -1, -3, or -4.5 °C for 1 hour during flowering. After treatment, half of the plants were exposed to bees (Bombus sp.) only, and half were exposed to bees and received applications of GA3. Fruit set of both `Brightwell' and `Tifblue' pollinated by bees declined sharply after exposure to -1 °C for 1 hour, but there was no visible damage to corollas, styles, and ovaries. Fruit set of GA3-treated plants of both cultivars equaled that of control plants (plants having no cold exposure) at temperatures ≥+-3 °C. Both pollinated and GA3-treated plants had ≤2% fruit set after exposure of flowers to -4.5 °C. Both prefreeze and postfreeze applications of GA3 were beneficial for fruit set. Assessment of flower part damage at the different temperatures indicated corollas were most sensitive to freeze damage, followed by styles, and then ovaries. Results suggest fertilization and fruit set of pollinated rabbiteye blueberries can be greatly impaired by even mild freezes (-1 to -2 °C), whereas, appropriately timed applications of GA3 can result in little reduction in fruit set even after moderate freezes (-3 to -4 °C) of blueberries during bloom. Chemical name used: gibberellic acid (GA3).

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Cultivars of the economically important rabbiteye blueberry (Vaccinium ashei Reade) were differentiated at the DNA level using the technique of randomly amplified polymorphic DNA. Single decanucleotide primers of arbitrary sequence were used to amplify genomic DNA by the polymerase chain reaction. All cultivars tested exhibited a unique set of collective amplified fragments of distinct molecular weight. A blind fingerprinting experiment resulted in identification of unknown samples without ambiguity. We also clarified the genetic identity of two wild selections of rabbiteye blueberry, `Ethel' and `Satilla', which have been maintained as two different selections, hut are considered by some blueberry breeders to be of the same genetic constitution. The technique also verified the probable identity of two cultivars in a commercial blueberry field by comparing their amplified DNA patterns with those of standard cultivars. No variation was observed between the amplification profiles of `Brightwell' and its presumed sport. A cultivar key based on 11 markers amplified by four primers is presented.

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Experiments were conducted during 1999 and 2000 at Griffin, Ga., with rabbiteye blueberries (Vaccinium ashei Reade) to determine how the growth regulator CPPU affected fruit set, berry size, and yield. CPPU (applied at two different timings) was used alone, and in conjunction with GA3 on mature, field-grown `Tifblue' plants. A control treatment without either growth regulator was also included. The CPPU concentration used was 10 mg·L-1 (a single application per treatment), and the GA3 concentration used was 200 mg·L-1 (two applications per treatment). Results from both years showed a positive benefit of CPPU with respect to fruit set and berry size, especially in the absence of GA3. Depending on timing, berry number per plant was increased by more than 200% in 1999 using CPPU. Berry size increases of more than 30% occurred in 2000 when CPPU alone was applied at 17 d after flowering (DAF). CPPU did not increase berry size of GA3-treated plants in either year. Total yield per plant during 2000 was 5.0, 7.1, and 8.3 kg for control, CPPU applied 7 DAF, and CPPU applied 17 DAF treatments, respectively, without GA3. While CPPU did substantially increase fruit set, berry size, and yield of `Tifblue', there was a notable delay in fruit ripening. These results suggest that CPPU may be useful for increasing yield of rabbiteye blueberries under conditions of inadequate fruit set (such as occurs in much of the Southeast), but a delay in ripening will likely result. Chemical names used: N-(2-chloro-4-pyridyl)-N′-phenylurea (CPPU); gibberellic acid (GA3).

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Marshall, D.A. Spiers, J.M. Braswell, J.H. 2006 Splitting severity among rabbiteye ( Vaccinium ashei Reade) blueberry varieties in Mississippi and Louisiana Intl. J. Fruit Sci. 6 77 81 Marshall, D

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Abstract

Percent fruit set, fruit size, total seeds/berry, developed seeds/berry, percent developed seeds/berry, and percent pollen stainability were examined in 4x × 5x and 5x × 4x progenies derived from Vaccinium ashei Reade/V. corymbosum L. pentaploid hybrids backcrossed to V. corymbosum. All fertility parameters indicated that the BC1 progenies were more fertile than the pentaploid hybrids. Pollen stainability indicated that the BC1 derivatives were less fertile than the parental species. All fertility parameters were significantly and negatively correlated with chromosome number, which ranged from the tetraploid (2n = 4x = 48) to pentaploid (2n = 5x = 60) levels within these progenies.

Open Access

Three varieties of rabbit eye (Vaccinium ashei) blueberries (`Climax',, `Premier', and `Tifblue') were harvested in Mississippi and two varieties of highbush (v. corymbosum blueberries (`BlueCrop' and `Jersey') were harvested in Michigan. Each variety was harvested at three different locations as replications. The berries were rapidly cooled to 5°C after harvest, placed in 1-pint containers, and analyzed at 7-day intervals for 28 days with day 0 being 48 h after harvest.

Shear, compression and puncture forces were higher for rabbiteye spp. than for highbush spp. `Bluecrop' blueberries showed the lowest shear force whereas, Climax, had the most shear force. Puncture force (skin toughness) was lower for `Bluecrop' and `Jersey' and higher for, Climax, There was an increase in shear force by all varieties with storage time. `Premier, and `Climax' had lower soluble solids, but they increased with storage time. `Jersey' had the highest pH and `Tifblue' the lowest. Although all varieties lost moisture with time, `Bluecrop' always had higher moisture. Mold growth varied with time; however, `Bluecrop' had a higher percentage of moldy berries throughout refrigeration. The percent decay was higher for highbush blueberries after 16 d of refrigeration. Rabbiteye's toughness and firmness give them a longer refrigerated shelf-life over highbush blueberries.

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The thinning potential of various chemicals sprayed on `Tifblue' rabbiteye blueberry was examined in the greenhouse in 1990 and under field conditions in 1991 and 1992. In the greenhouse, BA concentrations ranging from 25 to 500 mg·liter-1 and carbaryl concentrations ranging from 400 to 2100 mg·liter-1 reduced fruit set when treatments were applied 16 days after corolla drop (ACD). GA3 reduced fruit set only at 50 mg·liter-1 and NAA did not influence fruit set. In the field, BA at 75 mg·liter-1 and the combination of carbaryl at 400 mg·liter-1 and BA at 25 mg·liter-1 reduced fruit set in 1991 and 1992. Combinations of carbaryl and GA3 reduced fruit set, but the response depended on GA3 concentration and varied from year to year. GA3, NAA, and carbaryl also reduced fruit set, but the results were inconsistent. In 1991, greater thinning occurred when the treatments were sprayed 10 days ACD. BA at 25 mg·liter-1 increased fruit diameter at first harvest in 1991, and carbaryl at 400 mg·liter-1 increased fruit diameter in 1991 and 1992. Fruit diameter was increased in the presence and absence of thinning, depending on year and application time. Yield and return bloom were not influenced by any of the treatments. Chemical names used: 7 benzylamino purine (BA); gibberellic acid (GA3); 2-naphaleneacetic acid (NAA); 1-naphthyl N-methylcarbamate (carbaryl).

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