EFFECT OF IRRIGATION AND NUTRITION WITH CALCIUM ON FRUIT CRACKING OF THE CAPE GOOSEBERRY (PHYSALIS PERUVIANA L.) IN THE THREE STRATA OF THE PLANT
The cape gooseberry is one of the most important exotic fruit exports from Colombia. The fruits frequently present problems related to cracking that impede their export. Among possible causes of this cracking are irregular irrigation, calcium deficiencies and possibly, the position of fruits on the plant. A randomized complete block design was utilized, where the blocks had irrigation frequencies of 4, 9 and 14 days. A factorial design of 4x3 with a total number of 12 treatments was used, where the first factor was irrigation level (0.7, 1.0, 1.3 and 1.6, measured with a class A Evaporation Pan) and the second factor was calcium dose (0, 50 and 100 kg ha-1) on a total of 36 experimental units. Peat moss was utilized as a substrate in 20 L pots. The percentage of fruit cracking was evaluated in the three strata of the plants: I) 90-120 cm, II) 120-140 cm, and III) 140 a 160 cm in height. Significant differences were found among the irrigation levels. An irrigation coefficient of 0.7 resulted in 50% cracked fruits, while with a higher water application (coefficient of 1.6), cracking was found in 17.6% of the fruits. When calcium was not applied, the cracking reached 38%, while with a dose of 100 kg ha-1, the cracking was 27%. With an irrigation frequency of 14 days, the cracking was 18%, while with irrigation every 4th day the cracking was 45.6%. The stratum with the highest number of cracked fruits was III (apical) with 38% followed by 37 and 25% for the strata II and I, respectively. The cracking was 81% in the largest fruits and 33% in the small fruits. The lowest fruit cracking occurs separately with the application of 100 kg ha-1 of calcium, an irrigation coefficient of 1.6 and an irrigation frequency of 14 days.
Alvarez-Herrera , J., Balaguera-López, H. and Fischer, G. (2012). EFFECT OF IRRIGATION AND NUTRITION WITH CALCIUM ON FRUIT CRACKING OF THE CAPE GOOSEBERRY (PHYSALIS PERUVIANA L.) IN THE THREE STRATA OF THE PLANT. Acta Hortic. 928, 163-170
peat, fertilization, frequency irrigation