Effectiveness of new rain-protection systems on cracking, ripening date and fruit quality of sweet cherry cultivars

Mi. Grandi, S. Lugli, L. Piccinini, R. Correale, G. Costa, C. Etiopi, W. Monari
Since sweet cherry is a valuable cash crop, protection systems to limit rain-induced fruit cracking have grown in importance over the last few years. We tested the influence of new models of plastic film and netted sheets of varying specifications on cracking and changes in fruit quality parameters of selected sweet cherry cultivars widely grown in the Vignola area of Italy's Modena Province. Anisolar Plus, Anigold 200, Anisummer 200, Early Anigold 200, Politex 150 and Solution notably reduced damage rates. Given that they showed no significant differences between them, these models are capable of assuring good commercial yields even in seasons of heavy rainfall when unprotected orchards are at risk of losing their entire crop. These coverings also influenced the kind of cracking in several cultivars, reducing the incidence of basal splitting in favour of cheek cracking compared to unprotected crop. In addition, detection of quality parameters using destructive and such non-destructive techniques as the Cherry-Meter showed that the various covers induced differing results depending on cultivar and ripening date. For example, Early Anigold 200, Solution and Politex 150 seem to have affected the earliness of some cultivars while boosting greater soluble solids storage, whereas Anigold 200 and Anisummer 200 evinced a delay of ripening that may prove effective with late-season cultivars. Anisolar plus, on the other hand, elicited contrasting earliness and late-ripening effects depending on cultivar.
Grandi, Mi., Lugli, S., Piccinini, L., Correale, R., Costa, G., Etiopi, C. and Monari, W. (2017). Effectiveness of new rain-protection systems on cracking, ripening date and fruit quality of sweet cherry cultivars. Acta Hortic. 1161, 213-220
DOI: 10.17660/ActaHortic.2017.1161.35
Prunus avium, covers, kind of cracking, early and late ripening, Cherry-Meter, soluble solids

Acta Horticulturae