Effect of shade regime on flower development, yield and quality in lisianthus

Maya Lugassi-Ben-Hamo, Maayan Kitron, Amnon Bustan, Michele Zaccai

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

19 Scopus citations

Abstract

The effects of shading on lisianthus (Eustoma grandiflorum) floral transition, plant development, flower yield and quality, and content of starch and soluble sugars were assessed in three cultivars, over two consecutive years. Shading nets affording 67% or 88% reduction in light intensity, were fitted at planting in the greenhouse for periods ranging from 3 to 8 weeks. Meristem morphology at floral transition was characterized by apical meristem widening and the appearance of two bract primordia. Floral transition time was affected by cultivars, but in general, longer and heavier shade treatments delayed floral transition; the longest delay (6 weeks) being recorded in Mariachi White under 88% shade for 7 weeks or under a combined shade treatment of 88% for 3 weeks followed by 67% for 5 weeks. Despite interactions between cultivar and shade treatment, consistent trends were discerned: the heaviest and most prolonged shading reduced yield (up to 40%), cut stem length (up to 15%), and number of flower buds/stem (up to 26%), within cultivar. Total carbohydrates levels were very low, and it is questionable whether changes observed in carbohydrate quantity following shade treatments had any effect on plant growth or flower yield. Rather, it appears that lisianthus is very dependent on current photosynthesis, so that even a brief shading interlude could reduce branching and flower quality. It may be concluded that the intensive shading usually applied is detrimental for lisianthus.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)248-253
Number of pages6
JournalScientia Horticulturae
Volume124
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - 15 Mar 2010

Keywords

  • Carbohydrate
  • Eustoma grandiflorum
  • Floral transition
  • Shading
  • Starch

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Horticulture

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