FINE STRUCTURAL CHANGES OF ASPARAGUS SPEAR DURING STORAGE

D. C.N. Chang
Fluorescent microscopy showed that in the freshly harvested asparagus spears, only white asparagus had well lignified fiber ring. Usually white asparagus went through the process of toughening much more rapidly than green asparagus. In both kinds of asparagus, thickened and lignified cell wall appeared primarily in the fiber ring and vascular bundles. With the increase of storage time, the toughening would extend throughout the entire section. Low temperature delayed the structural changes. But this effect diminished with the increase of storage period.

Scanning electron microscopical observation further indicated that in green asparagus, after 2-day storage at room temperature, only helical type of vessels occurred in vascular bundles, while in white asparagus, both in fiber ring and vascular bundles, not only helical, but also scalariform, reticulate or even circular pitted types of wall thickening were observed.

Transmission electron microscopy revealed that in white asparagus, the toughening was mainly due to the thickening of cell wall, while in green asparagus, rupture of chloroplast and mitochondrial membranes were also found in addition to cell wall thickening.

It was recommended that white asparagus spears should not be stored for more than 1 day and green asparagus not more than 3 days.

Chang, D. C.N. (1983). FINE STRUCTURAL CHANGES OF ASPARAGUS SPEAR DURING STORAGE. Acta Hortic. 138, 305-312
DOI: 10.17660/ActaHortic.1983.138.36
https://doi.org/10.17660/ActaHortic.1983.138.36

Acta Horticulturae