FLOWER PERFORMANCE AND FRUIT PERSISTENCE IN ORGANIC 'KALAMATA' OLIVE
Organic olive farming is characterized by products with high biological value and increased market prices but in the same time is doubted for tree nutrition inefficiency and lower yield consistency. For two consecutive years, we studied flower biology in an irrigated Kalamata olive orchard. Additionally, fruit persistence, from fruit set to harvest was monitored in monthly intervals. Flowering was realized between mid-April and mid-May with duration affected by air temperature. The average number of flowers/inflorescence was 22 and flower fertility was 78%. 52% of the staminate flowers were located in the basal section of inflorescence, 33% in the middle part and only 15% in the apical fraction. In vitro pollen germination was 58.9% and mean pollen tube length was 196 μm. 64% of the fruit set was abscised between late May and late June while during the next 6 months to December 21% of the initial fruit load was dropped. The average fruit yield was 35.7 kg/tree. Tree productivity of organic olive compared to conventional farms is also discussed.
Koubouris , G.C., Metzidakis, I.T. and Vasilakakis, M.D. (2012). FLOWER PERFORMANCE AND FRUIT PERSISTENCE IN ORGANIC 'KALAMATA' OLIVE . Acta Hortic. 949, 203-208
abscission, flower fertility, fruit set, Olea europaea L., olive production, pollen germination