|Authors: ||L. Giongo, M. Grisenti, M. Eccher, F. Leri, U. Vrhovsek, F. Mattivi, W. Faedi|
|Keywords: ||Cultivar evaluation, antioxidant profile|
We report on the preliminary results of strawberry variety evaluation commenced in 2003 in Trentino, with co-operation between the local growers, the Istituto Agrario di San Michele all’Adige and the Istituto Sperimentale per la Frutticoltura – Section of Forlì. The major strawberry production system in this area is annual and is conducted in plastic tunnels and out of soil.
The dominant cultivar is ‘Elsanta’. Fifty-five genotypes were chosen from commercial strawberry varieties and advanced selections of Fragaria × ananassa Duch., to provide varietal information to the growers and to evaluate their performance in Italian mountain areas (Trentino region). A similar evaluation was carried out on thirty-five genotypes of Fragaria vesca. Plants were arranged in three to four plots of six plants each and assessed for horticultural traits using a ranking scale for plant vigour, time of flowering, ripening, fruit size, weight, production per plant, soluble solids, titratable acidity, firmness and colour.
Susceptibility to grey mould caused by Botrytis cinerea Pers.: Fr., anthracnose and powdery mildew was also recorded.
In addition to this agronomic evaluation of cultivars and following our studies on different berries of the species Vaccinium and Rubus in particular, innovative
approaches for the characterization of the cultivars were set up and applied.
A comparative study of the nutritional properties in terms of content of the main polyphenolic antioxidants and ascorbic acid in fruit was carried out by HPLC-DAD and LC-DAD-ESI-MS. This project, which aimed to identify varieties and selections most suitable for this particular environment, is a joint venture between a public institution and private companies, which should provide a sound basis for the development of strawberry production in Northern Italian mountain regions.
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