Evaluation of carrot cultivars for irrigated organic farming in north‑east Austria

J. Balas, R. Kappert, R. Nolz, S. Pollan, J. Renner, P. Cepuder
Five open pollinating cultivars and the standard F1-hybrid in field-production of carrots (Daucus carota L.) were cultivated in a three years on-farm field-trial (Biohof Adamah, Markgrafneusiedl, Marchfeld) in north-eastern Austrian; a sub-humid region with pannonic climate. Three different irrigation-regimes were established: local standard (control) and two deficit irrigation strategies: reduced or moderate and strongly reduced or severe deficit. The aim of this trial was to identify high performing open pollinating cultivars suitable for organic production as alternative to F1-hybrids and secondly to find a suitable irrigation regime (with an eye on “climate change”). According to organic agricultural practices carrots were sown in two rows on raised beds. Water supply was controlled by an irrigation computer by reducing the flow rate and intervals. The experimental design was in 3 blocks each for the graduated factor irrigation. Within blocks 3 replicates per cultivar were arranged randomly. The amount of irrigation was calculated and added to natural precipitation. Measurements include agronomic performance (marketable yield, rooting, plant-health), and sensory quality and quality traits of the five cultivars (Nantaise 2 types: ‘Milan’, ‘Mö 14 RFE 402’, ‘Fynn’, ‘Rotin’, ‘Beate’) as compared to ‘Maestro F1’. In the course of the trial severe drought-stress only slightly occurred but light and average stress were noticed. Significant effects of cultivar and graduated water supply were detected on agronomic and quality traits. ‘Maestro F1’ performed best based on the agronomic traits . The non-hybrids ‘Milan’ and ‘Beate’ might be suitable alternatives. Adoption of sustainable irrigation management should receive further attention and consideration.
Balas, J., Kappert, R., Nolz, R., Pollan, S., Renner, J. and Cepuder, P. (2021). Evaluation of carrot cultivars for irrigated organic farming in north‑east Austria. Acta Hortic. 1326, 67-74
DOI: 10.17660/ActaHortic.2021.1326.9
on-farm vegetable production, Daucus, semi-humid region Marchfeld, organic horticulture, seedfast cultivars

Acta Horticulturae