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Article << Previous     |     Next >>   Contents Vol 33(4)

Postharvest floral organ fall in Geraldton waxflower (Chamelaucium uncinatum Schauer)

DC Joyce

Australian Journal of Experimental Agriculture 33(4) 481 - 487
Published: 1993


Possible reasons for, and prevention of, postharvest floral organ fall in Geraldton waxflower (Chamelaucium unciizatum Schauer) were studied. An 11-kg compression load, equivalent to the lidding of a carton, caused flower fall amounting to 1% of the fresh mass of 420-g bunches. Fungal development also resulted in flower abscission. Healthy flowers produced little ethylene (e.g. 0.05 ¦L/kg.h), while infected flowers produced much more (e.g. 7.71 ¦L/kg.h) and were shed. Treatment with fungicide (iprodione + mancozeb) and antiethylene compounds [e.g. silver thiosulfate (STS) pulse, Purafil sorbant] reduced flowerfall in packaged flowers. Cut sprigs which suffered severe water deficit also shed flowers. In cv. Elegance, drying to -3.61 MPa elevated ethylene production (e.g. 1.35 ¦L/kg . h). Flowerfall induced by water deficit could be reduced by pretreatment with a STS pulse (0.5 mmol Ag+/L for 15-22 h at 0¦C or 4 mmol Ag+/L for 20-30 min at about 20¦C). Pretreatment with a naphthaleneacetic acid dip (50 mg/L for 1 min at room temperature) shortened the vase life of Elegance.

Full text doi:10.1071/EA9930481

© CSIRO 1993

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