|Authors: ||F. Ferlito, B. Torrisi, G. Cicciarello, G. Russo, D. PietroPaolo, M. Allegra, F. Intrigliolo, G. Roccuzzo|
|Keywords: ||citron, Mediterranean area, grafting, growth, yield, fruit quality|
Citron (Citrus medica L.) has economic value in a small area in Calabria (Southern Italy). The grafting of citron on other citrus species as an alternative to C. aurantium (L.) in the Mediterranean area has not been deeply studied before.
With the aim to evaluate the behavior of seven rootstocks on citron 'Diamante' performance under Mediterranean conditions, growth, yield and fruit quality were assessed during two consecutive growing seasons (2011-2012 and 2012-2013). The rootstocks studied were: i) Sour orange (C. aurantium L.), ii) 'Rubidoux' trifoliate orange [Poncirus trifoliata (L.) Raf.], iii) 'Flying Dragon' trifoliate orange [P. trifoliata (L.) Raf.], iv) 'Swingle' citrumelo [C. paradisi (Macf). × P. trifoliata (L) Raf.], v) 'Volkamer' lemon (C. volkameriana Ten. & Pasq.), vi) 'Troyer' and vii) 'Carrizo' citranges [C. sinensis (L.) Osbeck × P. trifoliata (L.) Raf.]. Trees were planted in 2008 on a deep sandy soil located in Reggio Calabria.
In both years 'Volkamer' lemon, sour orange and 'Carrizo' citrange showed significantly higher yields, particularly in comparison with 'Flying Dragon' and 'Rubidoux' trifoliate orange.
As far as fruit weight is concerned 'Volkamer' lemon induced the highest values.
Among the studied rootstocks no relevant graft-incompatibility was recorded.
The research identified some rootstocks that could be successfully introduced in the given environmental conditions. 'Flying Dragon' and 'Rubidoux' trifoliate orange, that induced a reduced plant growth, should be suitable for high density plantations, by adopting appropriate techniques to promote acceptable fruit production.
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