HOW GROWTH AND REPRODUCTION CYCLES AFFECT ALTERNATE BEARING IN OLIVE
Alternate bearing in olive (Olea europaea L.) is very marked, showing on and off years, thus making yield estimations highly unpredictable. The fruit production is more irregular where adverse environmental conditions are frequent. The olive is a long life shrub, able to renew its own canopy directly from the suckers originated from the crown (long term perennial cycle). The reproductive branches show the vegetative growth on the terminal portion of mixed shoots zone that can last for two up to four-five years. Their replacement is likely driven by watersprouts (short term perennial cycle) and the progressive turnover renews the exhausted parts with new fruiting, mixed and vegetative shoots. The vegetative portion of mixed shoots is flower induced in year (n) and produces the fruits in the following year (n+1, biennial cycle). Moreover, fruit has a 4-5 months growth (annual cycle). The present work discusses the assumption that the overlapping of annual, perennial and life cycles plays an important and specific role in determining alternate bearing.
Lodolini , E.M. and Neri, D. (2012). HOW GROWTH AND REPRODUCTION CYCLES AFFECT ALTERNATE BEARING IN OLIVE. Acta Hortic. 949, 191-198
shoot growth, annual cycle, life-long cycle, shoot-to-root ratio, relative production index