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Acalá del Río, Spain

Bordas M.,Agromillora Research SL | Torrents J.,Agromillora Research SL | Arenas F.J.,IFAPA Centro Las Torres | Hervalejo A.,IFAPA Centro Las Torres
Acta Horticulturae | Year: 2012

Spain is positioned as the sixth largest producer of citrus and the largest exporter worldwide, with an area of 315,000 ha in 2009. However, the profitability of Spanish citrus orchards is threatened by the globalization of the market and the existence of countries with cheaper labor, especially for those orchards destined to juice industry where manual harvesting represents about 50% of the final production costs. This situation requires the development of new technologies to improve the competitiveness of this business. In this regard, since 2008, Agromillora, in collaboration with IFAPA-Centro 'Las Torres', is developing a project for a high density plantation system of citrus. The key factors for the new model are the choice of dwarfing rootstocks, tree row structure as a hedge and 100% mechanized harvesting. The project aims to determine an appropriate crop management and pruning strategy to adapt orchards to mechanization. In 2009, six field trials of 1-2 ha were designed and planted with new dwarfing rootstocks, spacing plants at 3.5-4 m × 1-2 m. The expected results were: high and regular yields, rapid entry into production, improved fruit quality and reduced cost of harvesting. Our thinking is that the most suitable method of mechanical harvesting is by an over-row harvester doing continuous mechanization like harvesters used in vineyards and olive groves. After preliminary tests of machinery, we have realized that the High Density System (HDS) requires the formation of an appropriate tree row structure as a hedge of maximum 2.5 m height and 1 m width, and 0.7 m in the base of the trunk free of branches, as well as modify the existing machinery accordingly. © ISHS 2012. Source

Dominguez P.,IFAPA Centro Las Torres | Medina J.J.,IFAPA Centro Las Torres | Valpuesta V.,University of Malaga | Denoyes-Rothan B.,French National Institute for Agricultural Research
Theoretical and Applied Genetics | Year: 2011

Breeding for fruit quality traits in strawberry (Fragaria × ananassa, 2n = 8x = 56) is complex due to the polygenic nature of these traits and the octoploid constitution of this species. In order to improve the efficiency of genotype selection, the identification of quantitative trait loci (QTL) and associated molecular markers will constitute a valuable tool for breeding programs. However, the implementation of these markers in breeding programs depends upon the complexity and stability of QTLs across different environments. In this work, the genetic control of 17 agronomical and fruit quality traits was investigated in strawberry using a F 1 population derived from an intraspecific cross between two contrasting selection lines, '232' and '1392'. QTL analyses were performed over three successive years based on the separate parental linkage maps and a pseudo-testcross strategy. The integrated strawberry genetic map consists of 338 molecular markers covering 37 linkage groups, thus exceeding the 28 chromosomes. 33 QTLs were identified for 14 of the 17 studied traits and approximately 37% of them were stable over time. For each trait, 1-5 QTLs were identified with individual effects ranging between 9.2 and 30.5% of the phenotypic variation, indicating that all analysed traits are complex and quantitatively inherited. Many QTLs controlling correlated traits were co-located in homoeology group V, indicating linkage or pleiotropic effects of loci. Candidate genes for several QTLs controlling yield, anthocyanins, firmness and L-ascorbic acid are proposed based on both their co-localization and predicted function. We also report conserved QTLs among strawberry and other Rosaceae based on their syntenic location. © Springer-Verlag 2011. Source

Arenas F.J.,IFAPA Centro Las Torres | Hervalejo A.,IFAPA Centro Las Torres | Merino C.,IFAPA Centro Las Torres | Salguero A.,IFAPA Centro Las Torres
Acta Horticulturae | Year: 2012

The traditional destination of Spanish citrus, the fresh market, has been mostly of those harvested by hand. Currently, this practice is one of the main added costs of field production and the commercialization process. However, the recent installation of juice processing companies has led to modern plantations of high yielding quality oranges for processing. The competitiveness of these plantations is enhanced through mechanized harvesting as a priority strategy to reduce production costs and to improve competitiveness. © ISHS 2012. Source

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