The effect of temperature, photoperiod and cultivar on strawberry growth, development and yield in out-of-season glasshouse production
Year-round production of UK strawberries is becoming increasingly important due to a growing demand for out-of-season home produced fruit. Interest currently lies in glasshouse strawberry production with supplementary lighting using LEDs from December to March to fill the current gap in UK production. An experiment was carried out to investigate the effect of temperature, photoperiod, tipping and planting date and cultivar on the yield and cropping profile of a specialist low chill June-bearer and an everbearer. The experiment was carried out in a glasshouse consisting of two temperature-controlled compartments equipped with LED lighting, each with two motorised trolleys which transfer plants into light-tight photoperiod extension garages. Tray plants of the June-bearer, Driscolls® Lusa, were produced from runner tips harvested from mother plants at three dates (04/06/19, 19/06/19 and 04/07/19) and cropped under two photoperiods (12 h LED lighting with +4 or +10 h photoperiod extension) and two day/night temperature regimes (16/14°C and 22/14°C) from 16/10/19. Further Driscolls® Lusa and the everbearer, Driscolls® Zara tray plants were planted one month later. Treatment effects on plant growth, flowering and fruiting time and yield were studied. Lusa under the 22°C and 12 (+10 h) LED and photoperiod extension treatment fruited earliest, whilst Lusa under the 16°C and 12 (+4 h) LED and photoperiod extension resulted in the highest fruit yield and Lusa under the 16°C and 12 (+10 h) LED and photoperiod extension resulted in the highest fruit quality. Lusa fruited earlier and produced a higher yield and fruit quality than Zara. Tipping date only had a significant impact on time to fruiting at 16°C, with the latest tipping date producing the earliest fruit. The results are discussed in relation to the optimal environmental conditions needed to achieve optimum out-of-season glasshouse fruit production.
Read, S., Else, M.A., Hadley, P. and Twitchen, C. (2021). The effect of temperature, photoperiod and cultivar on strawberry growth, development and yield in out-of-season glasshouse production. Acta Hortic. 1309, 567-572
photoperiod extension, June-bearer, everbearer, fruit set, Class 1