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Article

Blooming under Mediterranean Climate: Estimating Cultivar-Specific Chill and Heat Requirements of Almond and Apple Trees Using a Statistical Approach

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IRTA, Institute of Agrifood Research and Technology, Torre Marimon, E-08140 Caldes de Montbui, Barcelona, Spain
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IRTA, Cabrils, E-08348 Cabrils, Barcelona, Spain
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IRTA, Fruitcentre, E-25003 Lleida, Spain
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IRTA, Mas de Bover, E-43120 Constantí, Tarragona, Spain
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IRTA-Mas Badia Foundation, E-17134 La Tallada d’Empordà, Girona, Spain
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Agronomy 2019, 9(11), 760; https://doi.org/10.3390/agronomy9110760
Received: 30 October 2019 / Revised: 8 November 2019 / Accepted: 12 November 2019 / Published: 15 November 2019
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Fruit and Nut Tree Phenology in a Warming World)
Climate change, and specifically global temperature increase, is expected to alter plant phenology. Temperate deciduous fruit trees have cultivar-specific chill and heat requirements to break dormancy and bloom. In this study, we aimed to estimate chill and heat requirements (in chill portions, CP, and growing degree hours, GDH, respectively) of 25 almond (30–36 years) and 12 apple (14–26 years) cultivars grown under a Mediterranean climate. The set included early and late blooming genotypes. Long-term phenological and temperature records were analyzed by means of partial least squares (PLS) regression. The main difference between early and late genotypes was chill requirement, ranging from 8.40 CP of early genotypes to 55.41 CP of extra-late genotypes. However, as chill requirements are quite easily attained by all almond cultivars in this study, year-to-year variations in actual blooming dates for each genotype are governed by variability of mean forcing temperatures. In contrast, different chill and heat combinations resulted in similar mean blooming dates for the studied apple cultivars. Mean temperature in both chilling and forcing phases determined their blooming time in the location studied. Overlaps and gaps between both phases were obtained. Despite some limitations, the PLS analysis has proven to be a useful tool to define both chilling and forcing phases. Nevertheless, since the delineation of these phases determine the total amount of CP and GDH, further efforts are needed to investigate the transition of these phases. View Full-Text
Keywords: flowering date; dormancy; PLS; climate change; deciduous fruit trees; chillR flowering date; dormancy; PLS; climate change; deciduous fruit trees; chillR
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MDPI and ACS Style

Díez-Palet, I.; Funes, I.; Savé, R.; Biel, C.; de Herralde, F.; Miarnau, X.; Vargas, F.; Àvila, G.; Carbó, J.; Aranda, X. Blooming under Mediterranean Climate: Estimating Cultivar-Specific Chill and Heat Requirements of Almond and Apple Trees Using a Statistical Approach. Agronomy 2019, 9, 760. https://doi.org/10.3390/agronomy9110760

AMA Style

Díez-Palet I, Funes I, Savé R, Biel C, de Herralde F, Miarnau X, Vargas F, Àvila G, Carbó J, Aranda X. Blooming under Mediterranean Climate: Estimating Cultivar-Specific Chill and Heat Requirements of Almond and Apple Trees Using a Statistical Approach. Agronomy. 2019; 9(11):760. https://doi.org/10.3390/agronomy9110760

Chicago/Turabian Style

Díez-Palet, Isabel, Inmaculada Funes, Robert Savé, Carmen Biel, Felicidad de Herralde, Xavier Miarnau, Francisco Vargas, Glòria Àvila, Joaquim Carbó, and Xavier Aranda. 2019. "Blooming under Mediterranean Climate: Estimating Cultivar-Specific Chill and Heat Requirements of Almond and Apple Trees Using a Statistical Approach" Agronomy 9, no. 11: 760. https://doi.org/10.3390/agronomy9110760

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