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Effects of drought on fruit set, yield and quality of custard apple (Annona spp. hybrid) 'African Pride' plants


George, AP and Nissen, RJ, Effects of drought on fruit set, yield and quality of custard apple (Annona spp. hybrid) 'African Pride' plants, Journal of Horticultural Science and Biotechnology, 77, (4) pp. 418-427. ISSN 1462-0316 (2002) [Refereed Article]

Copyright Statement

Copyright © 2002 Informa

DOI: doi:10.1080/14620316.2002.11511515


Studies were conducted to evaluate the effects of drought during flowering for both container- and field-grown trees, and during fruit development for container-grown trees, on subsequent growth, flowering, yield and quality of the custard apple ‘African Pride’ in subtropical Australia. Moderate drought (ψL = –1.5 MPa) reduced shoot growth by 20–30% and increased the number of flowers per lateral by about 40% compared with well-watered controls due to reduced apical dominance and increased lateral branching. Overall fruit set was not adversely affected by drought. Drought also increased the number of fruit harvested per tree by 47% compared with well-watered controls. This response was mainly due to the increase in flower number per tree. Drought reduced average fruit size by 11% possibly due to effects on cell division in the first 4–6 weeks after fruit set or on net carbon assimilation. In summary, mild to moderate drought during the flowering period and fruit set increased flowering without adversely affecting fruit set, but decreased fruit size.

Item Details

Item Type:Refereed Article
Keywords:Australia, carbon fixation, cultivar, drought, fruit set, fruit size, growth inhibition, hybrid, plant apical dominance, plant response, plant yield, shoot growth, Annona
Research Division:Agricultural, Veterinary and Food Sciences
Research Group:Horticultural production
Research Field:Horticultural crop growth and development
Objective Division:Plant Production and Plant Primary Products
Objective Group:Horticultural crops
Objective Field:Horticultural crops not elsewhere classified
UTAS Author:Nissen, RJ (Dr Robert Nissen)
ID Code:115564
Year Published:2002
Web of Science® Times Cited:2
Deposited By:Tasmanian Institute of Agriculture
Deposited On:2017-03-30
Last Modified:2017-09-22

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