, Volume 97, Issue 3-4, pp 339-347
Date: 21 Nov 2008

A comparison among olive flowering trends in different Mediterranean areas (south-central Italy) in relation to meteorological variations

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Phenological observations of the anthesic phases of olive flowering in a central Mediterranean area were recorded over a 9-year period. The aim of this research was to compare the flowering dates in relationship to the meteorological changes. Pollen emission from anthers was monitored by remote instrumentation placed directly in olive groves and phenological data regarding daily pollen concentrations (pollen/m3) were recorded using a pollen monitoring methodology. The rhythm of the phenological phases emerged as dependent on the meteorological trend of the spring forcing temperature. Generally, the phenomenon of pollen emission occurred progressively earlier prior to 2001, while in the following 5 years, the trend seemed to be inverted, showing a progressive delay of flowering. The spring quarterly mean temperature trends registered by GISS data in Europe confirmed the presence of diverse meteorological behavior during the study period, probably causing the biological divergences that were monitored. The principal result of the present contribution is to evidence the relativity of empirical investigations and observations considering different time intervals. This is due to the partial, brief series (9 years) of flowering dates which have to be considered as part of a longer series (26 years) in order to have a complete vision of the true phenomenon.