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Horticulturae, Volume 7, Issue 1 (January 2021) – 10 articles

Cover Story (view full-size image): For the consumer, fruit colour is one of the most important characteristics in determining whether they will purchase the product; this is true from apricots to persimmons and from apples to grapes. The colour red is perceived and associated with ripeness, good taste and sweetness. This contribution investigates how placing a reflective white textile cloth (Extenday®) under the apple trees, either 2 or 4 weeks before harvest in April, improved the red colour on cv. “Fuji” (photo) and “Pacific Rose” fruit on the South Island of New Zealand (–41° S), using 2000 colour measurements of fruits that were still attached to the apple trees. View this paper
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Open AccessFeature PaperArticle
Effect of Drying Methods on Phenolic Compounds and Antioxidant Activity of Urtica dioica L. Leaves
Horticulturae 2021, 7(1), 10; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/horticulturae7010010 - 19 Jan 2021
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Abstract
Stinging nettle (Urtica dioica) is a plant well known in traditional medicine for its many beneficial properties, but the lack of standardization regarding the product to offer to consumers limits its diffusion. To this end, drying appears to be a useful [...] Read more.
Stinging nettle (Urtica dioica) is a plant well known in traditional medicine for its many beneficial properties, but the lack of standardization regarding the product to offer to consumers limits its diffusion. To this end, drying appears to be a useful technique to offer a low-cost product that can be stored for long time, but the different drying procedures may give rise to end-products of very different quality as nutraceutical and antioxidant compounds. Nettle leaves have been dehydrated employing freeze-drying (FD), oven-drying (OD) or heat pump drying (HPD) and compared with fresh leaves following water extraction to emulate the use by final consumers. Results indicate that the best dehydration technique is HPD, which apparently gives rise to more than a doubling of total phenols and antioxidant activity in the extract compared to the water extract obtained from fresh leaves but a reduction in the level of ascorbic acid of about 39%. In addition, the content of some phenolic compounds is 10 to over a hundred times higher in the extract after HPD than that obtained from fresh samples. This confirms that the dehydration technique should be tuned in relation to the compounds of greatest interest or value. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Nutritional and Antioxidant Value of Horticulturae Products)
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Open AccessReview
UV Lighting in Horticulture: A Sustainable Tool for Improving Production Quality and Food Safety
Horticulturae 2021, 7(1), 9; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/horticulturae7010009 - 17 Jan 2021
Viewed by 559
Abstract
Ultraviolet (UV) is a component of solar radiation that can be divided into three types defined by waveband: UV-A (315–400 nm), UV-B (280–315 nm), and UV-C (<280 nm). UV light can influence the physiological responses of plants. Wavelength, intensity, and exposure have a [...] Read more.
Ultraviolet (UV) is a component of solar radiation that can be divided into three types defined by waveband: UV-A (315–400 nm), UV-B (280–315 nm), and UV-C (<280 nm). UV light can influence the physiological responses of plants. Wavelength, intensity, and exposure have a great impact on plant growth and quality. Interaction between plants and UV light is regulated by photoreceptors such as UV Resistance Locus 8 (UVR8) that enables acclimation to UV-B stress. Although UV in high doses is known to damage quality and production parameters, some studies show that UV in low doses may stimulate biomass accumulation and the synthesis of healthy compounds that mainly absorb UV. UV exposure is known to induce variations in plant architecture, important in ornamental crops, increasing their economic value. Abiotic stress induced by UV exposure increases resistance to insects and pathogens, and reduce postharvest quality depletion. This review highlights the role that UV may play in plant growth, quality, photomorphogenesis, and abiotic/biotic stress resistance. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Environmental Analysis of Sustainable Production Practices Applied to Cyclamen and Zonal Geranium
Horticulturae 2021, 7(1), 8; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/horticulturae7010008 - 15 Jan 2021
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Abstract
Italian floriculture is facing structural changes. Possible options to maintain competitiveness of the involved companies include promotion of added values, from local production to environmental sustainability. To quantify value and benefits of cleaner production processes and choices, a holistic view is necessary and [...] Read more.
Italian floriculture is facing structural changes. Possible options to maintain competitiveness of the involved companies include promotion of added values, from local production to environmental sustainability. To quantify value and benefits of cleaner production processes and choices, a holistic view is necessary and could be provided by life cycle assessment (LCA) methodology. Previous studies on ornamental products generally focused on data from one company or a small sample. The aim of this study was a gate-to-gate life cycle assessment of two ornamental species, cyclamen (Cyclamen persicum Mill.) and zonal geranium (Pelargonium × hortorum Bailey), using data from a sample of 20 companies belonging to a floriculture district in the Treviso, Veneto region. We also assessed the potential benefits of the environmental impact of alternative management choices regarding plant protection and reuse of composted waste biomass. Life cycle impact assessment showed higher impact scores for the zonal geranium, mainly as a consequence of greenhouse heating with fossil fuels. This factor, along with higher uniformity of production practices and technological levels of equipment, translated to a lower variability in comparison with cyclamen production, which showed a wider results range, in particular for eutrophication, acidification and human toxicity potential. The application of integrated pest management with cyclamen had significant benefits by reducing acidification and human toxicity, while reducing use of mineral nutrients through amending growing media with compost resulted in a reduction in eutrophication potential. Similar achievable benefits for zonal geranium were not observed because of the dominant contribution of energy inputs. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Trends in Ornamental Plant Production)
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Open AccessArticle
Evaluation of Biological Approaches for Controlling Shoot and Fruit Borer (Earias vitella F.) of Okra Grown in Peri-Urban Area in Bangladesh
Horticulturae 2021, 7(1), 7; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/horticulturae7010007 - 13 Jan 2021
Viewed by 476
Abstract
Irrational applications of insecticides on vegetable crops are very common in Bangladesh, resulting in harmful consequences for the environment and human health. Therefore, a study was conducted to evaluate the efficacy of biological and botanical insecticides on okra shoot and fruit borer grown [...] Read more.
Irrational applications of insecticides on vegetable crops are very common in Bangladesh, resulting in harmful consequences for the environment and human health. Therefore, a study was conducted to evaluate the efficacy of biological and botanical insecticides on okra shoot and fruit borer grown in open fields. Four insecticides were used in this study, namely Bacillus thuringiensis (Bt), Spinosad 45 SC, Abamectin 1.8 EC, and Azadirachtin 1% EC an untreated control. The experiment used a randomized complete block design (RCBD) with three replications. The results showed that the rate of shoot infestation was the lowest in the Spinosad-treated plot (3.80%), and the highest was in the control (20.67%). The lowest fruit infestation (3.56%) was recorded in the treated plot of Spinosad. The rate of reduction of fruit infestation over control was 80.69, 60.14, 56.45, and 55.58% in the plots treated with Spinosad, Bt, Azadirachtin, and Abamectin, respectively. Consequently, the Spinosad-treated plot attained the highest yield (8.65 t ha−1), which was followed by the plots treated with Azadirachtin (6.74 t ha−1), Bt (6.28 t ha−1), and Abamectin (6.12 t ha−1). The highest net return and benefit–cost ratio (BCR) were 542.36 US$ and 2.64, obtained respectively from the Spinosad-treated plot. The second highest BCR (1.70) was obtained from the Azadiratin-treated plot, and the lowest BCR (1.18) was recorded in the Abamectin-treated plot. Therefore, the studied insect management practices could be incorporated to attain higher yields and economic benefits for growing okra in Bangladesh. Full article
Open AccessArticle
Nutritional Characterization and Storage Ability of Salicornia ramosissima and Sarcocornia perennis for Fresh Vegetable Salads
Horticulturae 2021, 7(1), 6; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/horticulturae7010006 - 08 Jan 2021
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Abstract
The aim of this work was to study the potential of two halophytes for fresh salads. Sarcocornia perennis (SAR) and Salicornia ramosissima (SAL) plant tips were harvested in May and July, and stored at 4 °C for 14 days. At harvest, mineral analyses [...] Read more.
The aim of this work was to study the potential of two halophytes for fresh salads. Sarcocornia perennis (SAR) and Salicornia ramosissima (SAL) plant tips were harvested in May and July, and stored at 4 °C for 14 days. At harvest, mineral analyses (Na, K, Mg, Ca, P, N, Fe, Zn, Cu, Pb and Cd), chlorophyll content, protein, β-carotene and ascorbic acid were performed. Color (CIELab), phenolics, antioxidant activity and microbial contamination were measured at harvest and after 14 days storage at 4 °C, and a taste panel evaluated the products. SAL had generally slightly higher values of vitamin C, phenols and carotenoids than SAR. In SAR after 14 days of storage, the levels of phenols and the antioxidant activity were higher than at harvest, both in May and July. The opposite was observed for SAL. In this case, only the antioxidant activity was higher after 14 days of storage. Microbial contamination was very low, not reaching even half of critical limits. Both halophytes had good nutritional value, being suitable for use as fresh salads which can be stored for up to 14 days at 4 °C. SAR seems to be a better source of antioxidants, Ca and Fe than SAL and has less general quality and nutritional value changes from harvest time through cold storage. Fresh tips of both halophytes showed better appearance and nutritional quality when harvested in the early season (May) than at the end of the season (July). Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Postharvest Biology, Quality, Safety, and Technology)
Open AccessArticle
Comparison of Secondary Metabolite Contents and Metabolic Profiles of Six Lycoris Species
Horticulturae 2021, 7(1), 5; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/horticulturae7010005 - 05 Jan 2021
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Abstract
Quantitative HPLC analysis was performed on six different species of Lycoris herbs to investigate variation in phytochemical content, especially galantamine and phenylpropanoid-derived compounds. The contents of these compounds differed widely among the Lycoris species, with L. radiata and L. chinensis containing the lowest [...] Read more.
Quantitative HPLC analysis was performed on six different species of Lycoris herbs to investigate variation in phytochemical content, especially galantamine and phenylpropanoid-derived compounds. The contents of these compounds differed widely among the Lycoris species, with L. radiata and L. chinensis containing the lowest and highest galantamine contents, respectively. Specifically, the galantamine content of L. radiata was 62.5% higher than that of L. chinensis. Following L. radiata, L. sanguinea contained the next highest galantamine content, which was 59.1% higher than that of L. chinensis. Furthermore, a total of 12 phenylpropanoid-derived compounds were found in the different Lycoris species, where L. sanguinea, L. squamigera, and L. uydoensis had the largest accumulation of these compounds. The total phenylpropanoid content of L. sanguinea was the highest, while that of L. radiata was the lowest. Seven of the phenylpropanoid-derived compounds, rutin, quercetin, catechin, epicatechin gallate, chlorogenic acid, benzoic acid, and kaempferol, were dominant. L. sanguinea, L. uydoensis, and L. squamigera showed amounts of these seven compounds that were 5–6 times greater than those of the other species in the study. To the best of our knowledge, our results provide the most detailed phytochemical information on these species to date, which is valuable for future applications using these medicinal plants. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Freezing Tolerance and Chilling Fulfillment Differences in Cold Climate Grape Cultivars
Horticulturae 2021, 7(1), 4; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/horticulturae7010004 - 30 Dec 2020
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Abstract
Grapevine sustainability is impacted by the timing of dormancy initiation and freezing tolerance in fall and winter and chilling fulfillment and bud break in the spring. These traits have genetic and local temperature contributing factors; therefore, this study was undertaken to develop an [...] Read more.
Grapevine sustainability is impacted by the timing of dormancy initiation and freezing tolerance in fall and winter and chilling fulfillment and bud break in the spring. These traits have genetic and local temperature contributing factors; therefore, this study was undertaken to develop an understanding of these characteristics in four recently developed cold climate cultivars. The cold hardiness and chilling fulfillment profiles were monitored in Brianna, Frontenac gris, La Crescent and Marquette using differential thermal analyses and bud break assays. Bud cold hardiness of all cultivars increased with the declining temperatures from November through February, after which the buds began to lose freezing tolerance. There were significant differences in cold hardiness and chilling fulfillment between cultivars during the endodormant and ecodormant period of winter. Marquette had the greatest freezing tolerance from early November through midwinter suggesting it has potential as a sentinel cultivar for comparisons of new cold climate selections. Brianna was slower to acclimate and deacclimated more rapidly than the other cultivars. Chilling fulfillment under natural field or constant 4 °C conditions showed no main effect differences for chilling accumulation condition; however, there were significant cultivar, condition, and time point interactions, indicating the cultivars differed in chilling fulfillment responses. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Grape Responses to Abiotic and Biotic Stresses)
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Open AccessArticle
Fruit Ripening Development of ‘Valencia’ Orange Trees Grafted on Different ‘Trifoliata’ Hybrid Rootstocks
Horticulturae 2021, 7(1), 3; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/horticulturae7010003 - 29 Dec 2020
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Abstract
The development of fruit ripening of ‘Valencia’ orange trees [Citrus sinensis (L.) Osb.] grafted on the following ‘Trifoliata’ hybrid rootstocks: ‘US-852’, IPEACS-256 and IPEACS-264 citrandarins, and F.80-3, ‘W-2’ citrumelo, and ‘Swingle’ citrumelo (control), was assessed in three different subtropical locations: Rancho Alegre [...] Read more.
The development of fruit ripening of ‘Valencia’ orange trees [Citrus sinensis (L.) Osb.] grafted on the following ‘Trifoliata’ hybrid rootstocks: ‘US-852’, IPEACS-256 and IPEACS-264 citrandarins, and F.80-3, ‘W-2’ citrumelo, and ‘Swingle’ citrumelo (control), was assessed in three different subtropical locations: Rancho Alegre (RA); São Sebastião da Amoreira (SSA); and São Jerônimo da Serra (SJS), Parana state, Brazil. The climate of the RA and SSA locations was classified as Cfa with hot summers, whereas that of the SJS location was Cfb with temperate summers, which are located at 380, 650, and 835 m a.s.l., respectively. A completely randomized block design with four replications and four trees per plot was used as a statistical model for each location. The soluble solids (SS) content, titratable acidity (TA), and the maturation index (MI) or ratio (SS/TA) of the juice, as well as the citrus color index (CCI) of fruit skin, were assessed monthly, beginning 200 days after flowering until harvest, totaling seven sampling dates. The data sets of each location were analyzed independently through a two-way analysis of variance (ANOVA) involving rootstocks in a split plot array in time (days) to allow for the assessment of the significance of the main effects, complemented by regression analysis. In general, the ripening of ‘Valencia’ orange fruits was influenced by the different ‘Trifoliata’ hybrid rootstocks. At the RA location, trees on IPEACS-256 and’ US-852’ citrandarins had the highest SS, and on ‘US-852’ citrandarin had the highest MI, reaching the MIim earlier than the other rootstocks. The highest CCI was achieved when trees were on IPEACS-256 citrandarin. At the SSA location, trees on ‘US-852’, IPEACS-256, and IPEACS-264 citrandarins had the highest SS, but on ‘US–852’ had the highest MI, reaching the earliest MIim among the rootstocks. The highest CCI was achieved when trees were on ‘US-852’ and IPEACS-256 citrandarins. In the SSJ location, there was no significant effect of the rootstocks on and of the variables of ‘Valencia’ orange fruit. This assessment can be useful in the planning of new orchards producing high-quality fruit with desirable features for the orange juice industry. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Feature Papers in Horticulturae)
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Open AccessArticle
Spatial and Temporal Enhancement of Colour Development in Apples Subjected to Reflective Material in the Southern Hemisphere
Horticulturae 2021, 7(1), 2; https://doi.org/10.3390/horticulturae7010002 - 27 Dec 2020
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Abstract
(1) Background: Climate change associated with a warm autumn often hampers the development of colouration of many fruits including late ripening apple varieties in New Zealand. (2) Objective: This study will provide detailed information on the possibility of enhancing colouration of apples under [...] Read more.
(1) Background: Climate change associated with a warm autumn often hampers the development of colouration of many fruits including late ripening apple varieties in New Zealand. (2) Objective: This study will provide detailed information on the possibility of enhancing colouration of apples under the diffuse light conditions in autumn in the southern hemisphere (SH). The aim is to obtain a larger proportion of fruit meeting the (red) colour market specifications, especially within the first picks, and to identify both the side of the fruit and its position within the tall trees canopy (3.5 m) as affected by reflective mulch on the ground spread at and over different times. (3) Material and methods: Reflective white textile mulch (Extenday®) was spread in the grassed alleyways 4 weeks or 2 weeks before the anticipated harvest in April on cv. Fuji and Pacific Rose apple trees without hail nets in the Northern Part of the South Island (41° S) of NZ. Fruit colour (blush) was determined by scoring and colourimeter during fruit maturation and at harvest, and fruit quality was determined at harvest by standard methods. (4) Results: (a) In cv. Pacific Rose apple, the reflective mulch increased the scored blush value from 1.5 (<50% blush) to 3.9 (ca. 75% blush) before the first pick, whereas the control fruit (without ExtendayR) reached a final score value of only 3.0. (b) Fruit colour improved after one week of exposure to reflective mulch in the SH. (c) The scored blush on fruit near the trunk with reflective mulch doubled (Pacific Rose) or tripled (Fuji) at harvest in comparison with trees with grass alleyways (control). (d) Two and four weeks of reflective mulch enhanced colouration of the down facing side for fruit of both cultivars, especially for fruit from the inside of the canopy near the tree trunk. However, reflective mulch significantly improved blush by 20% on fruit from the periphery of the canopies of the tall trees in both cultivars without significantly affecting fruit firmness, soluble solids, starch breakdown or ripeness. (5) Conclusions: The results from ca. 2000 colour measurements showed that the short exposure of at least two weeks of reflective mulch was sufficient for enhancing colouration for outside, inside and down facing sides of the fruit of both cultivars. As a result of this surprisingly short and efficient exposure time for these tall trees (3.5 m), the reflective mulch increased the portion of fruit harvested in the first pick by 8% (Fuji) and by 27% (Pacific Rose) with improved fruit storability or export quality and thereby increased financial returns to the grower in the SH. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Feature Papers in Horticulturae)
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Open AccessEditorial
Advanced Greenhouse Horticulture: New Technologies and Cultivation Practices
Horticulturae 2021, 7(1), 1; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/horticulturae7010001 - 24 Dec 2020
Viewed by 529
Abstract
Greenhouse horticulture is one of the most intensive agricultural systems, with the advantages of environmental parameter control (temperature, light, etc.), higher efficiency of resource utilization (water, fertilizers, etc.) and the use of advanced technologies (hydroponics, automation, etc.) for higher productivity, earliness, stability of [...] Read more.
Greenhouse horticulture is one of the most intensive agricultural systems, with the advantages of environmental parameter control (temperature, light, etc.), higher efficiency of resource utilization (water, fertilizers, etc.) and the use of advanced technologies (hydroponics, automation, etc.) for higher productivity, earliness, stability of production and better quality. On the other hand, climate change and the application of high inputs without suitable management could have negative impacts on the expansion of the greenhouse horticulture sector. This special issue gathers twelve papers: three reviews and nine of original research. There is one review that focuses on irrigation of greenhouse crops, while a second surveys the effects of biochar on container substrate properties and plant growth. A third review examines the impact of light quality on plant–microbe interactions, especially non-phototrophic organisms. The research papers report both the use of new technologies as well as advanced cultivation practices. In particular, new technologies are presented such as dye-sensitized solar cells for the glass cover of a greenhouse, automation for water and nitrogen deficit stress detection in soilless tomato crops based on spectral indices, light-emitting diode (LED) lighting and gibberellic acid supplementation on potted ornamentals, the integration of brewery wastewater treatment through anaerobic digestion with substrate-based soilless agriculture, and application of diatomaceous earth as a silica supplement on potted ornamentals. Research studies about cultivation practices are presented comparing different systems (organic-conventional, aeroponic-nutrient film technique (NFT)-substrate culture), quantitative criteria for determining the quality of grafted seedlings, and of wild species as alternative crops for cultivation. Full article
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