Special Issue "The Molecular Mechanism and Approaches to Break Dormancy in Fruit Trees"

A special issue of Agronomy (ISSN 2073-4395). This special issue belongs to the section "Horticultural and Floricultural Crops".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (18 August 2020) | Viewed by 4085

Special Issue Editor

Dr. Raquel Sánchez-Pérez
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
Centro de Edafología y Biología Aplicada del Segura (CEBAS-CSIC), Campus Universitario de Espinardo, E-30100 Murcia, Spain
Interests: molecular biology; agrochemicals; molecular markers; dormancy; flowering time; plant physiology; plant biochemistry; transcriptomics; VIGS; metabolomics; LC–MS; GC–MS
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Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Fruit production directly depends on flowering success, which in turn depends on climate conditions. Perennial plants, such as temperate fruit trees, have the ability to induce and release/break dormancy, which means suspending and resuming growth periodically in response to changing environmental and seasonal conditions. The break of endodormancy (also called winter dormancy) demands the long-term accumulation of low temperatures, recorded as chill requirements (CR), followed by the accumulation of high temperatures (heat requirements) to restore the ability to grow. In other words, only when chill + heat requirements have been fulfilled will flowering take place, by the initiation of an extensive reprogramming of transcriptional and metabolic pathways.

Temperate deciduous fruit tree crops are cultivated in different climate conditions over the world. Consequently, breeders are making a big effort to develop new varieties with either lower CR to combat mild winters, or with higher CR with a late flowering time to combat late frosts. In addition, growers aim to develop management practices that can help to overcome shortages in winter chill or to regulate flowering time. Unfortunately, weather conditions are often unpredictable, and undergoing dynamic change, making fruit production a real challenge when taking into consideration global warming as consequence of climate change. Severe effects of climate change on fruit production are projected for warmer regions, in particular around the Mediterranean Sea and Southwestern North America, and more dramatically in South Africa, Southern Australia, and Northern Africa, where most of the required winter chill conditions to release dormancy are projected to be lost. Moreover, global warming due to climate change is also increasing the risk of exposure of forest and fruit trees to delayed spring/late frosts, which often leads to loss of the entire yield.

Please share your success stories from research in regions around the world in this Special Issue. We welcome submissions on topics including (but not limited to): (1) the novel application of agrochemicals to advance or delay dormancy and, therefore, flowering time; (2) the analysis of transcriptomes; (3) the analysis of metabolomes by analytical chemistry; (4) epigenetic studies; (5) agronomic practices related to crop productivity under climate change; and (6) decision support tools and modeling.

Dr. Raquel Sánchez-Pérez
Guest Editor

Manuscript Submission Information

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Keywords

  • Agrochemicals
  • Dormancy
  • Epigenetic
  • Flowering time
  • Modeling
  • Omic technologies
  • Transcription factors

Published Papers (2 papers)

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Research

Article
Exogenous Gibberellic Acid Advances Reproductive Phenology and Increases Early-Season Yield in Subtropical Blackberry Production
Agronomy 2020, 10(9), 1317; https://doi.org/10.3390/agronomy10091317 - 03 Sep 2020
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 1961
Abstract
Inadequate winter chill causes poor and erratic budbreak in blackberry (Rubus L. subgenus Rubus Watson), limiting the commercial production in subtropical climates. We examined the effects of exogenous gibberellic acid (GA3) on the reproductive phenology, fruit number, yield, and fruit [...] Read more.
Inadequate winter chill causes poor and erratic budbreak in blackberry (Rubus L. subgenus Rubus Watson), limiting the commercial production in subtropical climates. We examined the effects of exogenous gibberellic acid (GA3) on the reproductive phenology, fruit number, yield, and fruit quality of three blackberry cultivars (‘Natchez’, ‘Navaho’, and ‘Ouachita’) grown under subtropical climatic conditions in two consecutive growing seasons. A single spray application of GA3 at 0 or 49 g·ha−1 was performed when plants were dormant in late December to late January. Exogenous GA3 advanced the onset of budbreak by 12 to 82 days, flowering by four to 20 days, and fruit ripening by 0 to 15 days. When pooling across the cultivars, it also increased early-season yield by 83% to 276% in two consecutive growing seasons and total-season yield by 60% in the second growing season. Among the cultivars, the yield responses to GA3 were most consistent in ‘Ouachita’, with early-season yield increasing by up to 499%. The average berry weight and soluble solids concentration were slightly reduced by GA3, but these reductions were not consistent in the two growing seasons and the impact on overall fruit marketability was small. These results suggest that exogenous GA3 is an effective bud dormancy breaking compound for blackberry, and it could be an important adaptation tool for subtropical blackberry production. Full article
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Article
Effect of a Late Spring Application of Hydrogen Cyanamide on High-Chill Peaches
Agronomy 2019, 9(11), 726; https://doi.org/10.3390/agronomy9110726 - 08 Nov 2019
Cited by 7 | Viewed by 1856
Abstract
Due to a record low chilling accumulation in the winter of 2016–2017, many high-chill peach cultivars displayed almost no budbreak by mid-April of 2017 in central Georgia, USA, where budbreak usually occurs around mid-March. In this study, nine of these peach cultivars were [...] Read more.
Due to a record low chilling accumulation in the winter of 2016–2017, many high-chill peach cultivars displayed almost no budbreak by mid-April of 2017 in central Georgia, USA, where budbreak usually occurs around mid-March. In this study, nine of these peach cultivars were used to study the effect of a late spring Dormex spray application (April 13, 2017) on subsequent budbreak, year-end cumulative vegetative growth, and following-season yield. Dormex was found to have strong stimulating effects on lateral budbreak, but little effect on terminal and floral budbreak. It also had apparent phytotoxic effects on lateral, terminal and floral buds, and growth. The effects varied among genotypes, tree ages, and shoot types. The peak of the effects occurred two weeks post-application. Most floral buds abscised before they swelled. Between Dormex-sprayed trees and unsprayed controls, there was no significant difference in the number and average length of the new lateral shoots by the end of 2017, nor in the number and weight of the fruit harvested in 2018. In conclusion, our data showed a late spring Dormex spray application stimulated earlier lateral budbreak and caused some level of phytotoxicity to all types of buds and new growth, but had little impact on flower budbreak, fruit set, year-end vegetative growth, or following-season yield. These findings provide useful information for growers, considering the need for spraying dormancy-breaking compounds when faced with insufficient chilling. Full article
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