Postharvest growth of the terminal (king) flower receptacle in apple buds

S. McArtney, D.W. Greene, T. Schmidt
Apple flowers are initiated during the summer of the year prior to their emergence. The size of the flower receptacle can influence fruit size potential of apple at harvest. This report describes the effect of different growing environments, and premature defoliation resulting from natural infection by Glomerella leaf spot (GLS), on growth of the king flower in 'Golden Delicious' apple buds between harvest and one month after leaf abscission. Buds were sampled from mature trees at harvest, leaf abscission, and one month after leaf abscission in 2008 in North Carolina (50 days from harvest to leaf abscission and a gradual transition to winter), Washington State (30 days from harvest to leaf abscission and an abrupt transition to winter), and Massachusetts (15 days from harvest to leaf abscission and an abrupt transition to winter). The increase in diameter of the king flower receptacle between harvest and leaf abscission was greatest in North Carolina and least in Massachusetts. Diameter of the king flower receptacle continued to increase during the first month after leaf abscission in North Carolina in 2008, but remained constant during this period in Washington State and Massachusetts. Premature defoliation resulting from severe GLS infection had no effect on the increase in king flower receptacle diameter between harvest and one month after leaf abscission in North Carolina. The effect of carbohydrate supply on growth of the king flower during the period from harvest until the first month after leaf abscission is discussed.
McArtney, S., Greene, D.W. and Schmidt, T. (2017). Postharvest growth of the terminal (king) flower receptacle in apple buds. Acta Hortic. 1177, 177-182
DOI: 10.17660/ActaHortic.2017.1177.24
https://doi.org/10.17660/ActaHortic.2017.1177.24
Malus × domestica, floral initiation, doming, floral bud differentiation, Glomerella cingulata, defoliation
English

Acta Horticulturae