Evaluation of low-chill peach (Prunus persica L.) cultivars suitable for arid climate of southern Tunisia
The warm climate of the southern part of Tunisia is very appropriate for the cultivation of peach tree (Prunus persica L.) and offers a high potential of earliest harvest. In recent years, the production areas have been extended through the use of many low chilling cultivars for peach trees. This study aimed to evaluate suitable peach cultivars for the warm and arid Tunisian areas by monitoring six peach cultivars: Plawhite 10, Sagittaria, UFO3, UFO4, Plagold25 and Blanvio10. Trees were cultivated on two different sites of Tataouine, Tunisa, with an annual mean temperature of 22.5°C, annual means of minimum and maximum values temperature of 7.8 and 36.6°C, respectively (2018) and annual precipitation of 132 mm. The data showed that the full bloom dates started in February and ended in mid-April. The bloom rate values of the cultivars were an average 90%. The mean fruit set was around 85%. Maturing period was overlapping between late April and early June. Plawhite 10 was the earliest cultivar. The highest yield was obtained for Plagold 25 cultivar due to its biggest fruits and high level of crop load. The soluble solid content of UFO3 and UFO4 peaches was over 15 °Brix for two production sites. The fruits of UFO4 cultivars were very juicy. Plawhite 10 and Blanvio 10 were the most suitable cultivars recommended for warm and arid Tunisian areas for their precocity degrees. The other cultivars were also suitable for peach orchard development in these regions.
Toumi, I., Tlahig, S. and Nagaz, K. (2023). Evaluation of low-chill peach (Prunus persica L.) cultivars suitable for arid climate of southern Tunisia. Acta Hortic. 1372, 57-62
low chill cultivars, warm areas, harvest, quality