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ISHS Acta Horticulturae 322: I International Symposium on Training and Pruning of Fruit Trees

THE EFFECT OF RESTRICTED ROOT VOLUME ON THE DEVELOPMENT, YIELD AND DRY-MATTER PARTITIONING IN YOUNG FRUITING PEACH TREES

Authors:   A. Erez, Y. Ran, B. Bar-Yosef
DOI:   10.17660/ActaHortic.1992.322.22
Abstract:
The objective of this work was to quantify the effect of restricted root volume on the relationship among roots, shoots and fruits in peach trees. The experiment was carried out in Kfar Hanania Experimental Station in Northern Israel, latitude 33°N at 400 m above sea level. Own-rooted woody cuttings of ‘Springcrest’ peach were grown for 4 years in containers holding 5, 10, 20, 40 and 80 liters of course quartz sand. All trees were fertigated frequently to prevent water and nutrient stress. Number of drippers was adapted to the water requirement of the trees in the different container volumes. Young shoot and fruit growth rates were followed during spring and early summer. Dry matter production and partitioning among roots, trunk, shoots, leaves and fruits was determined by disintegrating five trees per treatment four times during the experiment. Container volume did not markedly affect tree development during the first year but did significantly reduce trunk diameter and young shoot growth during the next 3 years. Yield per tree was correlated significantly with root volume in the last 2 years of the experiment. The rate of fruit growth and final fruit size were not affected by the container size but for the smallest container in the 4th year where fruit was smaller. Available root volume was directly correlated with total dry matter production by the tree but had only a slight effect on dry-matter partitioning among the different organs. The 80-liter container was found to be the most efficient producer, but the 20-liter container was found to be the best allocator of dry matter to the fruit and the best practical treatment.

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