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Volume 6, September

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Horticulturae, Volume 6, Issue 4 (December 2020) – 14 articles

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Open AccessBrief Report
Quantitative Trait Locus Analysis in Squash (Cucurbita moschata) Based on Simple Sequence Repeat Markers and Restriction Site-Associated DNA Sequencing Analysis
Horticulturae 2020, 6(4), 71; https://doi.org/10.3390/horticulturae6040071 - 22 Oct 2020
Viewed by 147
Abstract
Squash (Cucurbita moschata) displays wide morphological and genetic variations; however, limited information is available regarding the genetic loci of squash that control its agronomic traits. To obtain basic genetic information for C. moschata, an F2 population was prepared derived [...] Read more.
Squash (Cucurbita moschata) displays wide morphological and genetic variations; however, limited information is available regarding the genetic loci of squash that control its agronomic traits. To obtain basic genetic information for C. moschata, an F2 population was prepared derived from a cross between the Vietnamese cultivar ‘Bí Hồ Lô TN 6 (TN 6)’ and the Japanese cultivar ‘Shishigatani’, and flowering and fruit traits were examined. Overall, the traits showed a continuous distribution in the F2 population, suggesting that they were quantitative traits. A linkage map was constructed based on simple sequence repeat and restriction site-associated DNA (RAD) markers to detect quantitative trait loci (QTLs). Twelve QTLs for flowering and fruit traits, as well as one phenotypic trait locus, were successfully localized on the map. The present QTLs explained the phenotypic variations at a moderate to relatively high level (16.0%–47.3%). RAD markers linked to the QTLs were converted to codominant cleaved amplified polymorphic sequence (CAPS) and derived CAPS markers for the easy detection of alleles. The information reported here provides useful information for understanding the genetics of Cucurbita and other cucurbit species, and for the selection of individuals with ideal traits during the breeding of Cucurbita vegetables. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Genetics, Genomics, Breeding, and Biotechnology (G2B2))
Open AccessArticle
Developing Triploid Maples
Horticulturae 2020, 6(4), 70; https://doi.org/10.3390/horticulturae6040070 - 21 Oct 2020
Viewed by 186
Abstract
Maples are common street and shade trees throughout the temperate zone. They are widely used for their wide range of ornamental traits and adaptability, particularly to urban settings. Unfortunately, some species such as Acer tataricum ssp. ginnala (Amur maple) and A. platanoides (Norway [...] Read more.
Maples are common street and shade trees throughout the temperate zone. They are widely used for their wide range of ornamental traits and adaptability, particularly to urban settings. Unfortunately, some species such as Acer tataricum ssp. ginnala (Amur maple) and A. platanoides (Norway maple) have escaped cultivation to become pests or in some cases threaten native flora. However, these species remain economically important and are still asked for by name. To ameliorate potential future ecological damage from additional escapes, we have been breeding for sterile forms using ploidy manipulation and backcrossing to develop triploids. We began with a series of experiments to develop tetraploids of Amur, Norway, and trident (A. buergerianum) maples. Treatment of seedlings at the cotyledon or first true leaf stage was successful in inducing tetraploids of each species. Mortality, cytochimeras, and tetraploids varied among species. After identifying tetraploids, they were field planted alongside diploid cultivars and seedlings, which served as pollinizers in open-pollination. Seedlings derived from open-pollinated tetraploids were generally found to be a high percentage triploids. Thus far, no Norway or trident maple triploids have flowered but after three years we observed five, 22, and 22 Amur maple triploids flowering over three respective years with no seedlings recovered to date. Further evaluation is required but our findings are encouraging that the triploids we have developed thus far will be sterile and provide new cultivars for nursery growers and land managers. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Breeding, Genetics and Genomics of Ornamental Plants)
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Open AccessArticle
Study on the Growth Performance of Lettuce (Lactuca sativa) and Pak Choi (Brassica chinensis) in Different Aquaponic Growing Systems
Horticulturae 2020, 6(4), 69; https://doi.org/10.3390/horticulturae6040069 - 19 Oct 2020
Viewed by 213
Abstract
Aquaponics is a human-made recirculating ecosystem that integrates the cultivation of crops and aquaculture to produce higher-quality, safe, and nutritious food. However, limited studies have been conducted to investigate the performance of different aquaponic plant growing systems. As such, the current research focuses [...] Read more.
Aquaponics is a human-made recirculating ecosystem that integrates the cultivation of crops and aquaculture to produce higher-quality, safe, and nutritious food. However, limited studies have been conducted to investigate the performance of different aquaponic plant growing systems. As such, the current research focuses on evaluating the overall performance of four different aquaponic growing systems in the growth and yield of lettuce and pak choi. The data on the shoot and root biomass and growth parameters were collected, and the growth analysis was performed. The relative growth rate results indicated that the appropriate environmental conditions were provided for lettuce and pak choi to grow successfully in all the four aquaponic growing systems. The crop growth rate results revealed that all four aquaponic growing systems tested in this experiment were able to grow crops and provide yield successfully. However, the substrate-based closed capillary water distribution system (CCWD) had the best overall result, which showed great potential for aquaponic applications to promote alternative agriculture production under unfavored climate conditions. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Vegetable Production Systems)
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Open AccessArticle
Identification of Heat Tolerance in Chinese Wildgrape Germplasm Resources
Horticulturae 2020, 6(4), 68; https://doi.org/10.3390/horticulturae6040068 - 19 Oct 2020
Viewed by 202
Abstract
Global climate warming will significantly impact grapevine growth and development, and thus grape and wine industries worldwide. Heat-tolerant germplasms are very valuable for grapevine breeding programs. In this study, we assessed the thermotolerance of 247 wild grape accessions by chlorophyll fluorescence parameter ( [...] Read more.
Global climate warming will significantly impact grapevine growth and development, and thus grape and wine industries worldwide. Heat-tolerant germplasms are very valuable for grapevine breeding programs. In this study, we assessed the thermotolerance of 247 wild grape accessions by chlorophyll fluorescence parameter (Fv/Fm) under critical high temperature according to Xu et al. in 2016, 2017, and 2018. The results showed that 36 grape accessions showed strong heat tolerance. Therefore, these accessions can be used as parents for breeding heat-tolerant grape cultivars. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Grape Responses to Abiotic and Biotic Stresses)
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Open AccessArticle
Evaluation of Genotypes and Association of Traits in Watermelon Across Two Southern Texas Locations
Horticulturae 2020, 6(4), 67; https://doi.org/10.3390/horticulturae6040067 - 15 Oct 2020
Viewed by 192
Abstract
Watermelon is the most important horticultural crop in Texas and is grown across the state under diverse environments. Our study was conducted in the southern region of Texas to understand genotype-by-environment interactions and the contribution of yield components to yield. To accomplish this, [...] Read more.
Watermelon is the most important horticultural crop in Texas and is grown across the state under diverse environments. Our study was conducted in the southern region of Texas to understand genotype-by-environment interactions and the contribution of yield components to yield. To accomplish this, twenty genotypes were evaluated for important traits and characteristics at two locations, Uvalde and Weslaco TX, for two years, 2018 and 2019. The genotypes were evaluated for total yield, total fruit count, total soluble solids, rind thickness, fruit length, diameter and weight. Genotype-by-environment (G x E) interaction was not significant, possibly due to similarity in climatic conditions and nutrient management practices. In the grouped analysis, cultivars Crimson Diamond, Sunshade and the breeding line TAM 2 had a higher total yield. Path analysis showed a high direct effect for total fruit count and fruit diameter of 0.89 and 0.85, respectively. However, total fruit count had a high indirect effect of −0.44. Fruit weight was the only trait that showed a significant (p < 0.01) correlation towards total yield at r = 0.58. Neither of the high direct effects, total fruit count and fruit diameter, had a significant correlation. The study inferred that breeding resources could be optimized by reducing the testing location to only one representative location for measured traits in southern Texas. The indirect selection of total fruit or fruit diameter could result in better yield. The study suggested selecting for optimum total fruit and fruit diameter for higher yield. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Fruit Production Systems)
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Open AccessArticle
Cucurbita Rootstocks Improve Salt Tolerance of Melon Scions by Inducing Physiological, Biochemical and Nutritional Responses
Horticulturae 2020, 6(4), 66; https://doi.org/10.3390/horticulturae6040066 - 14 Oct 2020
Viewed by 230
Abstract
A hydroponic experiment was conducted to assess whether grafting with Cucurbita rootstocks could improve the salt tolerance of melon scions and to determine the physiological, biochemical, and nutritional responses induced by the rootstocks under salt stress. Two melon (Cucumis melo L.) cultivars [...] Read more.
A hydroponic experiment was conducted to assess whether grafting with Cucurbita rootstocks could improve the salt tolerance of melon scions and to determine the physiological, biochemical, and nutritional responses induced by the rootstocks under salt stress. Two melon (Cucumis melo L.) cultivars (Citirex and Altinbas) were grafted onto two commercial Cucurbita rootstocks (Kardosa and Nun9075). Plants were grown in aerated nutrient solution under deep water culture (DWC) at two electrical conductivity (EC) levels (control at 1.5 dS m−1 and salt at 8.0 dS m−1). Hydroponic salt stress led to a significant reduction in shoot and root growths, leaf area, photosynthetic activity, and leaf chlorophyll and carotenoid contents of both grafted and nongrafted melons. Susceptible plants responded to salt stress by increasing leaf proline and malondialdehyde (MDA), ion leakage, and leaf Na+ and Cl contents. Statistically significant negative correlations existed between shoot dry biomass production and leaf proline (r = −0.89), leaf MDA (r = −0.85), leaf Na+ (r = −0.90), and leaf (r = 0.63) and root (r = −0.90) ion leakages under salt stress. Nongrafted Citirex tended to be more sensitive to salt stress than Altinbas. The Cucurbita rootstocks (Nun9075 and Kardosa) significantly improved growth and biomass production of grafted melons (scions) by inducing physiological (high leaf area and photosynthesis), biochemical (low leaf proline and MDA), and nutritional (low leaf Na+ and ion leakage and high K+ and Ca++ contents) responses under salt stress. The highest growth performance was exhibited by the Citirex/Nun9075 and Citirex/Kardosa graft combinations. Both Cucurbita cultivars have high rootstock potential for melon, and their significant contributions to salt tolerance were closely associated with inducing physiological and biochemical responses of scions. These traits could be useful for the selection and breeding of salt-tolerant rootstocks for sustainable agriculture in the future. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Stem Branching of Cycad Plants Informs Horticulture and Conservation Decisions
Horticulturae 2020, 6(4), 65; https://doi.org/10.3390/horticulturae6040065 - 08 Oct 2020
Viewed by 345
Abstract
The number of branches in male and female plants of Cycas micronesica K.D. Hill, Cycas edentata de Laub., Cycas wadei Merr., and Zamia encephalartoides D.W. Stev. were counted in Guam, Philippines, and Colombia, to confirm earlier reports that female plants develop fewer branches [...] Read more.
The number of branches in male and female plants of Cycas micronesica K.D. Hill, Cycas edentata de Laub., Cycas wadei Merr., and Zamia encephalartoides D.W. Stev. were counted in Guam, Philippines, and Colombia, to confirm earlier reports that female plants develop fewer branches than males. Cycas plants produce determinate male strobili and indeterminate female strobili, but Zamia plants produce determinate strobili for both sexes. More than 80% of the female trees for each of the Cycas species were unbranched with a single stem, but more than 80% of the male trees exhibited two or more branches. The mean number of branches on male plants was more than double that of female plants. The number of branches of the Zamia male plants was almost triple that of female plants. Moreover, the Zamia plants produced 2.8-fold greater numbers of branches than the mean of the Cycas plants. Most of Guam’s unsexed C. micronesica trees in 2004 were unbranched, but after 15 years of damage from non-native insect herbivores, most of the remaining live trees in 2020 contained three or more branches. The results confirm that male Cycas and Zamia plants produce more branches than female plants and suggest cycad species with determinate female strobili produce more branches on female plants than species with indeterminate female strobili. Our results indicate that the years of plant mortality on Guam due to non-native insect herbivores have selectively killed more female C. micronesica trees. Horticulture and conservation decisions may be improved with this sexual dimorphism knowledge. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Feature Papers in Horticulturae)
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Open AccessReview
Seed Geometry in the Arecaceae
Horticulturae 2020, 6(4), 64; https://doi.org/10.3390/horticulturae6040064 - 07 Oct 2020
Viewed by 359
Abstract
Fruit and seed shape are important characteristics in taxonomy providing information on ecological, nutritional, and developmental aspects, but their application requires quantification. We propose a method for seed shape quantification based on the comparison of the bi-dimensional images of the seeds with geometric [...] Read more.
Fruit and seed shape are important characteristics in taxonomy providing information on ecological, nutritional, and developmental aspects, but their application requires quantification. We propose a method for seed shape quantification based on the comparison of the bi-dimensional images of the seeds with geometric figures. J index is the percent of similarity of a seed image with a figure taken as a model. Models in shape quantification include geometrical figures (circle, ellipse, oval…) and their derivatives, as well as other figures obtained as geometric representations of algebraic equations. The analysis is based on three sources: Published work, images available on the Internet, and seeds collected or stored in our collections. Some of the models here described are applied for the first time in seed morphology, like the superellipses, a group of bidimensional figures that represent well seed shape in species of the Calamoideae and Phoenix canariensis Hort. ex Chabaud. Oval models are proposed for Chamaedorea pauciflora Mart. and cardioid-based models for Trachycarpus fortunei (Hook.) H. Wendl. Diversity of seed shape in the Arecaceae makes this family a good model system to study the application of geometric models in morphology. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Feature Papers in Horticulturae)
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Open AccessArticle
Simulation of the Number of Strawberry Transplants Produced by an Autotrophic Transplant Production Method in a Plant Factory with Artificial Lighting
Horticulturae 2020, 6(4), 63; https://doi.org/10.3390/horticulturae6040063 - 06 Oct 2020
Viewed by 251
Abstract
To verify the productivity of the autotrophic transplant production method (ATPM), a novel propagation method in a plant factory with artificial lighting for transplant production (T-PFAL), strawberry transplants were produced by the ATPM for 365 days. A total of 3497 transplants were produced [...] Read more.
To verify the productivity of the autotrophic transplant production method (ATPM), a novel propagation method in a plant factory with artificial lighting for transplant production (T-PFAL), strawberry transplants were produced by the ATPM for 365 days. A total of 3497 transplants were produced by the ATPM over 365 days with nine propagules in a cultivation area of 3.6 m2 in the T-PFAL. When the simulated results were fit with the measured results, the propagation cycle timescales from planting propagules to producing the first, second, and third runner plants were 15, 27, and 43 days, respectively. The cumulative number of transplants (CNT) produced from 5, 10, and 20 initial propagules in a cultivation area of 36 m2 over 365 days was simulated by the verified program along with the propagation cycles, and these values were 27,970, 30,010, and 31,900, respectively. The simulated CNTs from nine initial propagules in 18 and 72 m2 over 365 days were 15,950 and 55,940, respectively. These results indicate that the ATPM is an appropriate propagation method to produce transplants rapidly in a T-PFAL, especially when the number of propagules or propagules is limited. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Propagation and Seeds)
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Open AccessArticle
Impact of Different Growing Substrates on Growth, Yield and Cannabinoid Content of Two Cannabis sativa L. Genotypes in a Pot Culture
Horticulturae 2020, 6(4), 62; https://doi.org/10.3390/horticulturae6040062 - 01 Oct 2020
Viewed by 375
Abstract
The impacts of different growing substrate compositions, consisting of peat (PM), peat substituted with 30% green fibre (G30) and coco coir fibre (CC) growth media, were investigated in regard to the plant height, biomass and floral yield, biomass nitrogen (N) content, root growth, [...] Read more.
The impacts of different growing substrate compositions, consisting of peat (PM), peat substituted with 30% green fibre (G30) and coco coir fibre (CC) growth media, were investigated in regard to the plant height, biomass and floral yield, biomass nitrogen (N) content, root growth, and cannabidiol content (CBD/A) of two phytocannabinoid-rich cannabis genotypes in an indoor pot cultivation system. Genotypes and substrate treatment combinations were randomly allocated to 36 plants according to a Latin square design. The results showed a higher total plant height for PM (39.96 cm), followed by G30 (35.28 cm), and the lowest in CC (31.54 cm). The N content of leaves indicated the highest values for plants grown in G30 (52.24 g kg DW−1), followed by PM (46.75 g kg DW−1) and a significantly lower content for CC (37.00 g kg DW−1). Root length density (RLD) increased by 40% (PM) and 50% (G30), compared to CC treatments, with no significant differences in root dry weight. Both genotypes, Kanada (KAN) and 0.2x, reacted in a genotype-specific manner. KAN indicated a reduced floral yield of plants grown in G30 (4.94 g plant−1) and CC (3.84 g plant−1) compared to PM (8.56 g plant−1). 0.2x indicated stable high floral yields of 9.19 g plant−1 (G30) to 7.90 g plant−1 (CC). Leaf DW increased in PM (5.78 g plant−1) and G30 (5.66 g plant−1) compared to CC (3.30 g plant−1), while CBD/A content remained constant. Due to a higher biomass yield, the CBD/A yield of flowers (549.66 mg plant−1) and leaves (224.16 mg plant−1) revealed 0.2x as an interesting genotype for indoor pot cultivation in a peat-based substrate substituted with 30% green fibres. Overall, the demand for organic green fibres to partly replace fractionated peat showed a genotype-specific option for a homogeneous plant development, with comparable high biomass yields and stable cannabinoid contents compared to a peat containing standard substrate. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
The Agriculture–Nutrition–Income Nexus in Tonga: Is Postharvest Loss Undermining Horticulture Market Efficiency in Tonga?
Horticulturae 2020, 6(4), 61; https://doi.org/10.3390/horticulturae6040061 - 01 Oct 2020
Viewed by 403
Abstract
The Kingdom of Tonga has one of the highest rates of diet-related non-communicable diseases (NCDs) in the world. Initiatives to promote pro-health dietary behaviour are possibly being compromised by poor or inconsistent consumer accessibility to affordable and safe fresh fruits and vegetables, referred [...] Read more.
The Kingdom of Tonga has one of the highest rates of diet-related non-communicable diseases (NCDs) in the world. Initiatives to promote pro-health dietary behaviour are possibly being compromised by poor or inconsistent consumer accessibility to affordable and safe fresh fruits and vegetables, referred to as the agriculture–nutrition–income nexus. While donors increasingly focus on nutrition-sensitive agriculture across the Pacific, there is little contemporary information concerning Tonga’s domestic horticultural distribution and market system, particularly in regards to food loss. This study surveyed 292 municipal and road-side vendors on Tongatapu and ‘Utu Vava’u Islands, with the aim of mapping and analyzing horticultural markets and farm supply, transport logistics, and quantifying postharvest practice and market loss. Tonga’s domestic horticultural market structure consists of a central municipal market and on Tongatapu Island, a supplementary network of urban and rural based road-side vendors. There is limited inter-island trade, with most farms located within 25 km of the central municipal market. Mean postharvest horticultural loss was very low, at 1.4% to 5.3%, with road-side vendors more vulnerable to loss. This level of loss was thought to reflect short intra-island transport distance, the type of crops being traded, and rapid market throughput, rather than a level of value chain efficiency. Vendors regulated market supply volume and price discounting and were the principal strategies to mitigate postharvest loss. While low levels of postharvest loss, short transport logistics, and fast market throughput are consistent with a relatively efficient horticulture market system, vendor practice may be impeding fresh fruit and vegetable accessibility. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Postharvest Biology, Quality, Safety, and Technology)
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Open AccessArticle
Physicochemical and Bioactive Characterisation of Edible and Waste Parts of “Piel de Sapo” Melon
Horticulturae 2020, 6(4), 60; https://doi.org/10.3390/horticulturae6040060 - 01 Oct 2020
Viewed by 331
Abstract
Several scientific studies point fruits as rich sources of antioxidants but mainly focus on their edible part. However, fruits wastes are abundant sources of bioactive compounds and nutrients, which are considered to be health beneficial. The main purpose was to characterise juice, pulp, [...] Read more.
Several scientific studies point fruits as rich sources of antioxidants but mainly focus on their edible part. However, fruits wastes are abundant sources of bioactive compounds and nutrients, which are considered to be health beneficial. The main purpose was to characterise juice, pulp, peel and seeds of Piel de Sapo melon, in terms of several physicochemical characteristics (soluble solids content, titratable acidity, pH, potassium, colour and water activity), some bioactive compounds (total phenolics, vitamin C, chlorophylls and total carotenoids) and total antioxidant activity. Juice, pulp, peel and seeds represent 47, 19, 27 and 5% of melon total weight, respectively. Peel and seeds stood out by their higher concentration of total phenolics compounds and antioxidant activity when compared to edible parts. The highest potassium concentration was found in seeds. Chlorophylls were only detected in peel, while carotenoids were not detected in any part of the melon analysed. Juice and pulp contributed to 69% of vitamin C amount of the whole fruit. However, its concentration in peel was equivalent to the ones observed in juice and pulp. These results pointed out the importance of fruit wastes valorisation and the development of strategies for their re-utilisation. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Plant Nutrition)
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Open AccessArticle
Blue Light Does Not Affect Fruit Quality or Disease Development on Ripe Blueberry Fruit During Postharvest Cold Storage
Horticulturae 2020, 6(4), 59; https://doi.org/10.3390/horticulturae6040059 - 30 Sep 2020
Viewed by 281
Abstract
Blueberry fruit are perishable after harvesting due to fruit softening, water loss and susceptibility to pathogens. Light, especially blue light, increases the accumulation of anthocyanins and reduces postharvest decay in some fruits, but the effect of blue light on postharvest fruit quality attributes [...] Read more.
Blueberry fruit are perishable after harvesting due to fruit softening, water loss and susceptibility to pathogens. Light, especially blue light, increases the accumulation of anthocyanins and reduces postharvest decay in some fruits, but the effect of blue light on postharvest fruit quality attributes in blueberries is unknown. In this study, we evaluated the effect of blue light on fruit quality, anthocyanin accumulation and disease development during postharvest cold storage (2 °C–4 °C) in two experiments with southern highbush blueberry ‘Star’ and rabbiteye blueberry ‘Alapaha’. Overall, diurnal blue light did not affect postharvest fruit quality attributes, such as visual defects, fruit compression, skin puncture, total soluble solid content and titratable acidity, in the two cultivars compared with their respective controls (diurnal white light or continuous darkness). Further, there was no effect of blue light on fruit color and anthocyanin accumulation. Fruit disease incidence in ‘Star’ ranged from 19.0% to 27.3% after 21 days and in ‘Alapaha’ from 44.9% to 56.2% after 24 days in postharvest storage, followed by 4 days at room temperature, but blue light had no consistent effect on postharvest disease incidence for either cultivar. Disease progression following artificial inoculations with Alternaria tenuissima and Colletotrichum acutatum in ‘Star’ was not influenced by light treatment prior to inoculation and during fruit storage. In a separate experiment, we tested the effect of blue light on color development in ‘Farthing’, a southern highbush blueberry cultivar with fruit prone to non-uniform ripening, whereby the stem-end remains green as the rest of the fruit turns blue. Although green stem-end spots turned blue over time, there was no statistically significant effect of the blue light treatment. Overall, these data indicate that blue light does not affect fruit quality attributes or disease development in ripe blueberry fruit during postharvest storage in the conditions investigated here. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Postharvest Biology, Quality, Safety, and Technology)
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Open AccessArticle
Valorization of Spent Coffee Grounds, Biochar and other residues to Produce Lightweight Clay Ceramic Aggregates Suitable for Nursery Grapevine Production
Horticulturae 2020, 6(4), 58; https://doi.org/10.3390/horticulturae6040058 - 23 Sep 2020
Viewed by 324
Abstract
The valorization of agro-industrial by-products is one of the key strategies to improve agricultural sustainability. In the present study, spent coffee grounds and biochar were used as pore forming agents in the realization of lightweight clay ceramic aggregates that were used as sustainable [...] Read more.
The valorization of agro-industrial by-products is one of the key strategies to improve agricultural sustainability. In the present study, spent coffee grounds and biochar were used as pore forming agents in the realization of lightweight clay ceramic aggregates that were used as sustainable fertilizers, in addition to tailored glass fertilizer containing phosphorous (P) and potassium (K) and nitrogen (N) synthetic fertilizer, for nursery grapevine production. The obtained fertilizers were assessed in a pot experiment for the fertilization of bare-rooted vines. Unfertilized (T0) and fertilized plants (T1, using NPK-containing commercial fertilizer) were used as controls. Plants fertilized by spent coffee grounds and spent coffee grounds + biochar-containing lightweight aggregates and added with 30 wt% of the above-mentioned glass and N fertilizers (T2 and T3, respectively) recorded higher values of plant height, shoot diameter, leaf and node numbers. Moreover, T2 treatment induced the highest chlorophyll content, shoot and root dry weights. The present study shows that lightweight clay ceramic aggregates containing spent coffee grounds and glass and N fertilizers can be used for nursery grapevine production, in turn improving the agricultural sustainability. Full article
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