Novel formulation of gibberellic acid and coconut oil fatty acids to enhance rabbiteye blueberry maturation, berry size, and yield: a review
This review paper provides a summary of results presented in a much more comprehensive article (Sampson et al., 2014). Specifics regarding methods and statistical procedures can be found in Sampson et al. (2014). Here, we summarize these results for popular cultivars of rabbiteye blueberry (V. virgatum syn. ashei Reade) that produce upwards of 90% deformed zygomorphic blooms as well as other cultivars that do not. One cultivar in particular, 'Premier', by producing zygomorphic blooms, suffers losses in yield. Infertility of these zygomorphs might render plants less fruitful with yield losses reaching 67%. Other vulnerable rabbiteye blueberry cultivars include 'Columbus', 'Yadkin', 'Montgomery', and 'Tifblue'. To ensure zygomorphic cultivars remain fruitful, blooms dosed with gibberellin A3 (GA3) can achieve exceptionally high sets of small seedless fruit that mature 7-14 days late. Our new GA3 formulation, which combines gibberellic acid with 0.05% coconut oil (or 5% coconut oil soap), yielded seedier faster-maturing berries rich in sugar (10 to 12% dissolved solids). Seeds appear to have arisen via apomixis perhaps induced by bioactivity of longer-chained fatty acids and cytokinins in coconut oil. Seed size for apomictic fruits varied considerably; a few seeds were as large as those resulting from cross-pollination; most seeds were 3-4 times smaller in volume. Coconut fatty acids therefore function as possible synergists to GA3, producing marketable seeded berries.
Sampson, B.J., Marshall-Shaw, D.A., Stringer, S.J., Sakhanokho, H.F. and Werle, C.T. (2017). Novel formulation of gibberellic acid and coconut oil fatty acids to enhance rabbiteye blueberry maturation, berry size, and yield: a review. Acta Hortic. 1180, 31-38
Vaccinium ashei, Vaccinium virgatum, plant growth regulator, PGR, pollination, seed set, GA3