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Asin L.,IRTA Estacio Experimental de Lleida | Torres E.,IRTA Estacio Experimental de Lleida | Vilardell P.,IRTA Estacio Experimental Agricola
Acta Horticulturae | Year: 2011

The efficacy of the use of overtree micro-sprinklers to increase fruit russet on 'Conference' fruit was studied over a period of 3 years. The objective was to increase fruit wetting at night by irrigating 1 mm/day. Irrigation was performed every day at midnight, from the end of petal fall, and for a period of 40 days. This strategy was compared to an untreated control and a standard practice consisting of making two applications of cupric hydroxide: at the end of petal fall and 1 week later. Applying micro-sprinkler irrigation significantly increased fruit russet compared to the untreated control in the first two years, but this treatment was less efficient than applying cupric hydroxide. In the last year of the trial, rainfall and relative humidity in April and early May were higher than in a normal year and this caused similar russet development in fruit of the control and overtree microsprinkler treatments. For all three years, the percentage of fruit in the extra russet category (with russet on over 50% of their surface) was 10% higher in the microsprinkler trial than in the untreated control (36 vs. 26%). However, cupric hydroxide increased russet to a higher degree: 75% of these fruit were assigned to the extra russet category (with russet on over 50% of their surface). Even so, applying copper did induce a reduction of over 25% in the final yield.

Torres E.,IRTA Estacio Experimental de Lleida | Alegre S.,IRTA Estacio Experimental de Lleida
Acta Horticulturae | Year: 2012

Bitter pit is the most important physiological disorder in apples. Effective prediction methods would be a good instrument either for industry or growers. Different methods were evaluated in 2008 and 2009 to predict the bitter pit at 40, 20 and 10 days before commercial harvest in 'Golden Smoothee' apples. A 40-fruit sample of each date and from different orchards was vacuum infiltrated with MgCl2, or immersed into ethephon solution, or left untreated. Bitter pit-like symptoms were evaluated approximately every 7 days on individual fruit kept at room temperature. An additional lot of each orchard was taken at harvest to establish the real bitter pit incidence after cold storage for 3 month. To estimate the predictive accuracy of each method, the bitter pit-like symptoms at 40, 20 and 10 dbh were related to the real bitter pit at postharvest. In both years, the 3 methods showed bitter pit-like symptoms approximately 7 days after the sampling showing high correlations with the real bitter pit incidence after 3 months of cold storage.

Alegre S.,IRTA Estacio Experimental de Lleida | Torres E.,IRTA Estacio Experimental de Lleida | Asin L.,IRTA Estacio Experimental de Lleida
Acta Horticulturae | Year: 2012

The influence of crop load on economic value of fruit yield was studied on fullmature orchards of 'Golden Smoothee' and 'Mondial Gala', with a density of 1786 trees/ha, in Lleida (NE Spain) through 3 years. At 40-45 days after full bloom, the number of fruits/tree was counted and the trunk cross-sectional area (TCSA) calculated with the aim of inducing different crop load levels (2, 4, 6, 8 and 10 fruits/cm2 TCSA). Each crop load level was replicated on 6 different trees. The fruit standard quality, fruit yield in each marketability category and return bloom were recorded; moreover, the incomes were calculated. Finally, we studied the evolution of each of these parameters according to crop load. No effects on the starch index and firmness were observed. However, we noticed a tendency to decrease the solid soluble content and acidity related to higher crop load. In both cultivars, the higher crop load levels reduced the return bloom. In conclusion, the optimal crop load level to get the highest income in 'Golden Smoothee' was around 4.5 fruits/cm2 TCSA. For 'Mondial Gala' the optimal crop load was around 3.5 fruits/cm2 TCSA since it was necessary to reduce the crop load to obtain fruits with higher colored surface.

Reig G.,IRTA Estacio Experimental de Lleida | Iglesias I.,IRTA Estacio Experimental de Lleida | Echeverria G.,IRTA Area de Postcollita
Acta Horticulturae | Year: 2012

The effect of flat peach and flat nectarine cultivars on agronomical performance, fruit quality and sensory attributes was evaluated at IRTA-Lleida (Spain) during several seasons. 'Sweet Cap®' and 'Mesembrinecov' were used as reference cultivars for peaches and nectarines, respectively. Blooming was, in general, similar for different cultivars and occurred between 'Big Top®' and 'O'Henry®' (reference cultivars). Blooming intensity was high or very high for most of the cultivars except 'Ordigancov'. Fruit set and hand thinning requirements were also high for all the cultivars except 'Oriolacov' and 'UFO-6® (Isfroplat-6Dcov)'. The harvest period ranged from the end of May ('UFO-1® (Isfroplat-1 Dcov)') to the middle of September ('FlatlatecakeDcov'). Early yields were recorded for all cultivars except 'Oriolacov', which exhibited delayed yielding. Of the mid-season cultivars, 'Sweet Cap' was the peach cultivar that provided the greatest yield and fruit size and 'Mesembrinecov' was the nectarine with the greatest colour. Fruit quality parameters were not affected by fruit type: peach or nectarine. Mean fruit diameter ranged from 55 mm ('UFO-1® (Isfroplat-1Dcov)') to 75 mm ('Oriolacov') depending on harvest time and cultivar. Lower fruit weight was recorded for the most precocious cultivars: 'UFO-1® (Isfroplat-1Dcov)' and 'UFO-2® (Isfroplat-2Dcov)', while 'Oriolacov' had the greatest weight. Fruit colour was affected by cultivar and harvest date. The best colour was recorded for cultivars harvested from mid-June to mid-August. Fruit firmness was lower in early harvested cultivars than in medium or late ones. Soluble solids content ranged from 10 °Brix ('UFO-2® (Isfroplat-2Dcov)') to 16 °Brix ('Nectacake®28 (ASF 04-71Dcov)'). Titratable acidity was medium to low for all cultivars except 'Donutnicecov', which had the greatest content. Values ranged from 1.5 ('UFO-6® (Isfroplat-6 Dcov)') to 10 g/L ('Donutnicecov'). Sensory attributes were assessed for 12 cultivars, using 'Big Top®' as the reference for sweet taste cultivars and 'Diamond Raycov' for acid taste cultivars. All the cultivars except 'Donutnicecov' exhibited a sweet taste. © ISHS 2012.

Iglesias I.,IRTA Estacio Experimental de Lleida | Echeverria G.,IRTA Area de Postcollita | Lopez M.L.,Avda. Rovira Roure
Scientia Horticulturae | Year: 2012

The effect of strain on fruit color development and anthocyanin content, fruit quality, volatile compound emissions and consumer acceptability was evaluated on seven 'Fuji' apple strains (Malus domestica Borkh.) at the IRTA (Spain) over a period starting three weeks commercial harvest in 2008 and ending one week after harvest. Based on fruit color, measured with a portable tristimulus colorimeter, and anthocyanin content, the most colored strain was 'Zhen Fuji Aztec' (blushed), followed by 'Fuji 6629' (also blushed), 'Fuji Kiku 8' and 'Rubin Fuji' (both striped). 'Fuji Chofu 2' (blushed) and 'Fuji Suprema' (barely striped) were the least colored strains, although fruit color started earlier in the last one. 'Ogura' (barely striped) provided intermediate values. The most important increase in anthocyanin content and decrease in hue values was recorded from one week before commercial harvest until harvest, in all strains except 'Fuji Suprema'. Highly colored strains developed a red color on both sides of the fruit with greater average values for strains with greater colored surfaces than for less colored strains. A medium relationship between hue angle, L* and a*/b* ratio and anthocyanin content was established.Fruit quality parameters for the different harvest dates as fruit firmness, soluble solid content (SSC), titratable acidity (TA), and starch index were similar for the different cultivars and date. Fruit firmness is well maintained across different dates even with high values of starch index. Differences in fruit color, intensity and type, were not related to differences in the fruit quality parameters of the different strains. Ripening time was therefore not related to the intensity or type of fruit color.There are some quantitatively and qualitatively differences among the volatile profiles of all the 'Fuji' strains. In quantitative terms, the 'Fuji' strain that emitted the lowest total concentration was 'Fuji Aztec'. There were no statistical differences among the total volatile compound concentrations of 'Fuji Kiku 8', 'Rubin Fuji', 'Fuji 6629' and 'Fuji Chofu 2', which obtained the highest values. The main volatile compound emitted for all of the analyzed strains was the 2-methylbutyl acetate. In general, apples of the most colored strains emitted less volatile compound compared to the least colored. Concerning to consumer acceptability, 'Fuji Aztec' strain got the lowest mean score, but there were no differences among the rest of 'Fuji' strains. A full-data principal component analysis was run. This analysis showed a high correlation between consumer acceptability and some of the volatile compounds emitted, in addition to fruit that exhibit bigger hue angles on the exposed side (lower red color). © 2012 Elsevier B.V.

Lordan J.,IRTA Estacio Experimental de Lleida | Alegre S.,IRTA Estacio Experimental de Lleida | Blanco R.,University of Lleida | Sarasua M.-J.,Center Udl Irta Of Rd Of Lleida | Alins G.,IRTA Estacio Experimental de Lleida
Crop Protection | Year: 2014

The European earwig Forficula auricularia Linnaeus (Dermaptera: Forficulidae) is a key predator of pests in pip fruit orchards; however, this insect can also cause economic damage in stone fruit crops. Pheromone-impregnated shelters may be useful to promote earwigs in orchards devoted to pip fruit and also to capture them in those used for stone fruit production. By using corrugated cardboard traps in four orchards during two years, we observed the aggregation behavior of European earwig in canopies. Under laboratory conditions, corrugated cardboard shelters impregnated by 0.2 individuals/cm2 over one week attracted earwigs for 5 weeks within a range of 50cm. Future field work should examine the potential of impregnated shelters to promote earwigs in pip fruit orchards and to remove them from stone fruit ones. © 2014 Elsevier Ltd.

Asin L.,IRTA Estacio Experimental de Lleida | Vilardell P.,IRTA Estacio Experimental Agricola Mas Badia | Bonany J.,IRTA Estacio Experimental Agricola Mas Badia | Alegre S.,IRTA Estacio Experimental de Lleida
Acta Horticulturae | Year: 2010

Trials on 'Conference' and 'Blanquilla' orchards were carried out in 2005 and 2007 in the Lleida basin (north-east Spain). Several thinning treatments involving 6-BA and NAA were applied either alone or in mixtures and the results were compared with hand-thinning. In all years, the experimental design was a randomized block. Both bioregulators showed a thinning effect, but this was not statistically significant in all cases. An improvement in fruit thinning was detected when both bioregulators were applied together. In some cases, this effect was too great and resulted in a decrease of around 60% in the final fruit yield, with BA at 150 ppm + NAA at 40 ppm in 'Conference', while in 'Blanquilla', the decrease was of around 30%. There was a direct relationship between fruit weight and crop load and a tendency for fruit weight to increase with 6-BA in 'Blanquilla'.

Vargas F.J.,IRTA Mas de Bover | Miarnau X.,IRTA Estacio Experimental de Lleida
Acta Horticulturae | Year: 2011

The disease called "fusicoccum canker" or "fusicoccum", caused by the fungus Phomopsis amygdali Del. (synonym Fusicoccum amygdali Del.), is an important pathogen in almond-growing areas of Spain and other Mediterranean countries. The fungus is propagated mainly by water, so orchards located near the ocean, rivers, or dams, with high relative humidity, are particularly prone to this disease. In almond plots in Mas de Bover, located near the seashore, "fusicoccum canker" is a common and serious problem. In 2008, which had heavy rainfall during May and June (265.6 mm), very favorable conditions for disease development occurred, but cultivars and selections included in IRTA's almond germplasm collection were affected in very different ways. An assessment was carried out of disease incidence, classifying 70 cultivars from Australia, France, Greece, Italy, Portugal, Spain, Tunisia, Ukraine, and the U.S.A. and 36 selections from France, Greece, Iran, Israel, Italy, and Spain on their sensitivity or tolerance to this fungus. All cultivars and selections were placed in five classes according to their infection degrees: very tolerant (11 cultivars and 8 selections), tolerant (16 cultivars and 7 selections), medium (11 cultivars and 8 selections), susceptible (15 cultivars and 4 selections), and very susceptible (17 cultivars and 9 selections).

Iglesias I.,IRTA Estacio Experimental de Lleida | Asin L.,IRTA Estacio Experimental de Lleida
Acta Horticulturae | Year: 2011

Agronomical performance of 'Conference' pear on several rootstocks (Cydonia oblonga and Pyrus communis) was evaluated at IRTA Experimental Station of Lleida (northeastern Spain) in conditions of calcareous soils and warm climate. Trees were planted in February 2002 using a planting distance of 4×1.2 m and trained as central axis. No differences were recorded on blooming time period. Annual and cumulative yields were greater on all the quinces (EMA, Adams, Sydo, EMC), compared to Pyriam cov rootstock. Early yield (3 rd year) was also greater on the quinces than on Pyriam cov. Vigor, evaluated by trunk cross-section area (TCA), was clearly affected by the rootstock, with EMC having the smallest TCA, EMH was intermediate and Sydo, EMA and Adams had the largest TCA among quinces while Pyriam was larger than all other stocks. Similar yield efficiency values recorded on all quinces, which had greater values than Pyriam cov. Fruit size was also affected by rootstock and was largest for Sydo, EMA and EMA, intermediate with EMH and lower with Pyriam cov. Pyriam cov was the least sensitive to iron chlorosis and EMC the most sensitive.

Sugar D.,Oregon State University | Villardel P.,IRTA Estacio Experimental Agricola Mas Badia | Asin L.,IRTA Estacio Experimental de Lleida
Acta Horticulturae | Year: 2015

Fruit russet incidence can be an important pear quality factor. Data on russet incidence on untreated 'Comice' and 'Bosc' pear fruit were collected for 13 and 10 years, respectively. Russet in 'Comice' was quantified as the percentage of fruit with >6% of the fruit surface covered in russet, and in 'Bosc' as the percentage of fruit with >97% russet. Russet incidence at harvest was correlated with records of various weather factors for the multi-year series. Beginning at each date from 21 days before full bloom until 50 days after full bloom, an 11-day moving window was calculated for each weather factor. Coefficients of correlation between weather factors and fruit russet at harvest were then plotted against dates relative to full bloom, and trends based on fifth-order polynomial equations were observed. High negative correlations with fruit russet were observed for temperature-related parameters (maximum and mean daily temperature, mean growing degree days base 10°C, intra-day temperature change). High positive correlations were observed with relative humidity (mean RH, accumulated hours with RH >80%). Peak correlation coefficient values for temperature and humidity factors typically occurred at 15-18 days after full bloom. Copper hydroxide applied to 'Bosc' pears at petal-fall enhanced russet and efficacy correlated negatively with temperature and positively with humidity.

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