Advertisement

Plant Growth Regulation

, Volume 89, Issue 3, pp 259–271 | Cite as

Effect of different application rates of metamitron as fruitlet chemical thinner on thinning efficacy and fluorescence inhibition in Gala and Fuji apple

  • Luis GonzalezEmail author
  • Estanis Torres
  • Joaquim Carbó
  • Simo Alegre
  • Joan Bonany
  • Gloria Àvila
  • Begoña Martin
  • Inmaculada Recasens
  • Luis Asin
Original paper

Abstract

Crop thinning is an important and difficult agricultural practice. Knowing the effect of the application dose of a product is a crucial element of any thinning program. The aims of this study were to investigate the effect of different metamitron doses on Gala and Fuji apples applied at fruit king diameters of between 8 and 10 mm and to determine fluorescence inhibition at the different application rates. Trials were conducted over two seasons from 2015 to 2016 in apple orchards in Lleida (Spain). Photosynthesis inhibition caused by metamitron was also analysed and measured, using chlorophyll fluorescence and biexponential pharmacokinetic models. Under the trial conditions, the application of metamitron reduced final fruit set, number of fruits per tree and crop load depending on the application rate. A dose effect was observed in all yield parameters. Moreover, when metamitron showed high efficacy, there was an improvement in fruit weight, coloration and diameter. The estimated parameters A, α and B using a biexponential equation were related with final fruit set, however the period of inhibition has to be finished before prediction can be made of metamitron efficacy in the year. The fluorescence analysis showed a dose effect, with metamitron dose increasing inhibition. Additionally, the same result was also observed in the area under curve analysis, with metamitron dose reducing the area and inhibition increasing. In all yield parameters, the fluorescence and area under curve analyses showed differences between cultivars, with the inhibition caused by metamitron higher in Gala than in Fuji. Moreover, differences between years were observed. 2015 was warmer than 2016, and the higher temperatures increased the thinning efficacy of metamitron.

Keywords

Crop load Doses Carbohydrate deficit Fruit abscission Photosynthesis Brevis® 

Notes

Acknowledgements

This study was supported financially by project INIA (RTA2012-00116-00-00) in collaboration with ADAMA-Spain.

References

  1. Basak A (2011) Efficiency of fruitlet thinning in apple “Gala Must” by use of metamitron and artificial shading. J Fruit Ornam Plant Res 19:51–62Google Scholar
  2. Bergh O (1990) Effect of time of hand-thinning on apple fruit size. South Afr J Plant Soil 7:1–10CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. Bringe K, Schumacher CF, Schmitz-Eiberger M, Steiner U, Oerke E-C (2006) Ontogenetic variation in chemical and physical characteristics of adaxial apple leaf surfaces. Phytochemistry 67:161–170CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. Brunner P (2014) Impact of metamitron as a thinning compound on apple plants. In: McArtney SJ, Spann T (eds), Xii international symposium on plant bioregulators in fruit production. International Society for Horticultural Science, Leuven 1, pp 173–181Google Scholar
  5. Byers R (2002) Influence of temperature and darkness on apple fruit abscission and chemical thinning. J Tree Fruit Product 3:41–53CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. Byers RE (2003) Flower and fruit thinning and vegetative: fruiting balance. CABI Publishing, WallingfordGoogle Scholar
  7. Byers RE, Barden JA, Polomski RF, Young RW, Carbaugh DH (1990) Apple thinning by photosynthetic inhibition. J Am Soc Hortic Sci 115:14–19CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. Chen LS, Cheng LL (2010) The acceptor side of photosystem II is damaged more severely than the donor side of photosystem II in ‘Honeycrisp’ apple leaves with zonal chlorosis. Acta Physiol Plant 32:253–261CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. Cline J, Bakker CJ, Gunter A (2018) Response of ‘Royal Gala’ apple to multiple applications of chemical thinners and the dynamics of fruitlet drop. Can J Plant Sci 99:1–11CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  10. Deckers T, Schoofs H, Verjans W (2010) Looking for solutions for chemical fruit thinning on apple. In: Costa G (ed), Xi international symposium on plant bioregulators in fruit production. International Society for Horticultural Science, Leuven 1, pp 237–244Google Scholar
  11. Dorigoni A, Lezzer P (2007) Chemical thinning of apple with new compounds. Erwerbs-Obstbau 49:93–96CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  12. Fernandez RT, Perry RL, Flore JA (1997) Drought response of young apple trees on three rootstocks. 2. Gas exchange, chlorophyll fluorescence, water relations, and leaf abscisic acid. J Am Soc Hortic Sci 122:841–848CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  13. Gonzalez L, Àvila G, Carbó J, Bonany J, Alegre S, Torres E, Martin B, Recasens I, Asin L (2019a) Hail nets do not affect the efficacy of metamitron for chemical thinning of apple trees. J Hortic Sci Biotechnol.  https://doi.org/10.1080/14620316.2019.1631128 CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  14. Gonzalez L, Bonany J, Alegre S, Àvila G, Carbó J, Torres E, Recasens I, Martin B, Asin L (2019b) Brevis thinning efficacy at different fruit size and fluorescence on ‘Gala’ and ‘Fuji’ apples. Sci Hortic.  https://doi.org/10.1016/j.scienta.2019.05.053 CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  15. Gustafson DL, Bradshaw-Pierce EL (2011) Fundamental concepts in clinical pharmacology. In: Garrett-Mayer E (ed) Principles of anticancer drug development. Springer, New York, pp 37–62CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  16. Jackson JE (2003) Biology of apples and pears/John E. Jackson. Biology of Horticultural Crops. Cambridge University Press, CambridgeGoogle Scholar
  17. Kautsky H, Hirsch A (1931) Neue versuche zur kohlensäureassimilation. Naturwissenschaften 19:964CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  18. Krause GH, Weis E (1984) Chlorophyll fluorescence as a tool in plant physiology. 2. Interpretation of fluorescence signals. Photosynth Res 5:139–157CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  19. Kviklys D, Robinson T (2010) Temperature before and after application of chemical thinners affects thinning response of ‘Empire’ apple trees. In: Costa G (ed) Xi international symposium on plant bioregulators in fruit production. International Society for Horticultural Science, Leuven 1, pp 525–530Google Scholar
  20. Lafer G (2010) Effects of chemical thinning with metamitron on fruit set, yield and fruit quality of ‘Elstar’. In: Costa G (ed) Xi international symposium on plant bioregulators in fruit production. International Society for Horticultural Science, Leuven 1, pp. 531–536Google Scholar
  21. Lakso AN (2011) Early fruit growth and drop—the role of carbon balance in the apple tree. In: Robinson TL (ed) Ix international symposium on integrating canopy, rootstock and environmental physiology in orchard systems. International Society for Horticultural Science, Leuven 1, pp 733–742Google Scholar
  22. Lordan J, Alins G, Àvila G, Torres E, Carbó J, Bonany J, Alegre S (2018) Screening of eco-friendly thinning agents and adjusting mechanical thinning on ‘Gala’, ‘Golden Delicious’ and ‘Fuji’apple trees. Sci Hortic 239:141–155CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  23. Lordan J, Reginato GH, Lakso AN, Francescatto P, Robinson TL (2019) Natural fruitlet abscission as related to apple tree carbon balance estimated with the MaluSim model. Sci Hortic 247:296–309CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  24. Maas FM, Meland M (2016) Thinning response of ‘Summerred’ apple to Brevis (R) in a northern climate. In: Costa G (ed) Eufrin thinning working group symposia. International Society for Horticultural Science, Leuven 1, pp 53–59Google Scholar
  25. Mathieu V, Lavoisier C, Bouniol M, Saint Hilary JF (2016) Apple thinning by photosynthesis inhibition. In: Costa G (ed) Eufrin thinning working group symposia. International Society for Horticultural Science, Leuven 1, pp 19–26Google Scholar
  26. McArtney SJ, Obermiller JD (2012) Use of 1-aminocyclopropane carboxylic acid and metamitron for delayed thinning of apple fruit. HortScience 47:1612–1616CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  27. McArtney S, Palmer JW, Adams HM (1996) Crop loading studies with ‘Royal Gala’ and ‘Braeburn’ apples: effect of time and level of hand thinning. N Z J Crop Hortic Sci 24:401–407CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  28. McArtney SJ, Obermiller JD, Arellano C (2012) Comparison of the effects of metamitron on chlorophyll fluorescence and fruit set in apple and peach. HortScience 47:509–514CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  29. McClure KA, Cline JA (2015) Mechanical blossom thinning of apples and influence on yield, fruit quality and spur leaf area. Can J Plant Sci 95:887–896CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  30. Navarro S, Bermejo S, Vela N, Hernandez J (2009) Rate of loss of simazine, terbuthylazine, isoproturon, and methabenzthiazuron during soil solarization. J Agric Food Chem 57:6375–6382CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  31. Robinson T, Lakso A (2004) Between year and within year variation in chemical fruit thinning efficacy of apple during cool springs. XXVI international horticultural congress: key processes in the growth and cropping of deciduous fruit and nut trees, vol 636, pp 283–294Google Scholar
  32. Robinson TL, Lakso AN, Greene D, Reginato G, Rufato AD (2016) Managing fruit abscission in apple part 1. In: Wunsche JN, Tranbarger TJ (eds) Xxix international horticultural congress on horticulture: sustaining lives, livelihoods and landscapes. International Society for Horticultural Science, Leuven 1, pp 1–13Google Scholar
  33. Rosa N (2016) Comparison between benzyladenine and metamitron as chemical thinning agents in Gala, Kanzi, Pink Lady and Red Delicious apple cultivars. ISA-UlGoogle Scholar
  34. Stern RA (2014) The photosynthesis inhibitor Metamitron is an effective fruitlet thinner for ‘Gala’ apple in the warm climate of Israel. In: Wunsche JN, Tranbarger TJ (eds) Xxix international horticultural congress on horticulture: sustaining lives, livelihoods and landscapes. International Society for Horticultural Science, Leuven 1, pp 15–23Google Scholar
  35. Stern RA (2015) The photosynthesis inhibitor metamitron is a highly effective thinner for ‘Golden Delicious’ apple in a warm climate. Fruits 70:127–134CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  36. Swarcewicz MK, Gregorczyk A (2013) Atrazine degradation in soil: effects of adjuvants and a comparison of three mathematical models. Pest Manag Sci 69:1346–1350CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  37. Urso R, Blandi PGG (2002) A short introduction to pharmacokinetics. Eur Rev Med Pharmacol Sci 6:33–44PubMedGoogle Scholar
  38. Yoon TM, Robinson TL, Reginato GH (2011) Effects of temperature and light level on efficiency of chemical thinner on ‘Empire’ apple trees. In: Robinson TL (ed) Ix international symposium on integrating canopy, rootstock and environmental physiology in orchard systems. International Society for Horticultural Science, Leuven 1, pp 1085–1093Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Nature B.V. 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.IRTA FruitcentreLleidaSpain
  2. 2.IRTA Mas Badia Field StationGironaSpain
  3. 3.HBJ Department, ETSEAUniversity of LleidaLleidaSpain
  4. 4.ADAMA AGRICULTURE ESPAÑAMadridSpain

Personalised recommendations