Trees

, Volume 28, Issue 6, pp 1607–1622

Model-assisted evaluation of crop load effects on stem diameter variations and fruit growth in peach

  • Tom De Swaef
  • Carmen D. Mellisho
  • Annelies Baert
  • Veerle De Schepper
  • Arturo Torrecillas
  • Wenceslao Conejero
  • Kathy Steppe
Original Paper
  • 289 Downloads
Part of the following topical collections:
  1. Long Distance Transport: Phloem and Xylem

Abstract

Key message

The paper identifies and quantifies how crop load influences plant physiological variables that determine stem diameter variations to better understand the effect of crop load on drought stress indicators.

Abstract

Stem diameter (Dstem) variations have extensively been applied in optimisation strategies for plant-based irrigation scheduling in fruit trees. Two Dstem derived water status indicators, maximum daily shrinkage (MDS) and daily growth rate (DGR), are however influenced by other factors such as crop load, making it difficult to unambiguously use these indicators in practical irrigation applications. Furthermore, crop load influences the growth of individual fruits, because of competition for assimilates. This paper aims to explain the effect of crop load on DGR, MDS and individual fruit growth in peach using a water and carbon transport model that includes simulation of stem diameter variations. This modelling approach enabled to relate differences in crop load to differences in xylem and phloem water potential components. As such, crop load effects on DGR were attributed to effects on the stem phloem turgor pressure. The effect of crop load on MDS could be explained by the plant water status, the phloem carbon concentration and the elasticity of the tissue. The influence on fruit growth could predominantly be explained by the effect on the early fruit growth stages.

Keywords

Prunus persica (L.) Batsch Dendrometers Stem radius changes Carbon relations Water relations Mechanistic modelling 

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  • Tom De Swaef
    • 1
    • 2
  • Carmen D. Mellisho
    • 2
    • 3
  • Annelies Baert
    • 2
  • Veerle De Schepper
    • 2
  • Arturo Torrecillas
    • 3
  • Wenceslao Conejero
    • 3
  • Kathy Steppe
    • 2
  1. 1.Plant Sciences UnitInstitute for Agricultural and Fisheries Research (ILVO)MelleBelgium
  2. 2.Laboratory of Plant Ecology, Department of Applied Ecology and Environmental Biology, Faculty of Bioscience EngineeringGhent UniversityGhentBelgium
  3. 3.Dpto. RiegoCentro de Edafología y Biología Aplicada del Segura (CSIC)MurciaSpain

Personalised recommendations