Nemeskéri, E., Sárdi, É., Kovács-Nagy, E., Stefanovits-Bányai, É., Nagy, J., Nyéki, J., & Szabó, T. (2009). Studies on the drought responses of apple trees (Malus domestica Borkh.) grafted on different rootstocks. International Journal of Horticultural Science, 15(1-2), 29-36. https://doi.org/10.31421/IJHS/15/1-2/809
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The morphological and chemical changes in the leaves of eight apple varieties grafted on M4, M26 and MM 106 rootstocks were examined during fruit development in non-irrigated plantation. The aim of the experiment was to examine the defensive mechanisms in apple trees under the mild and serious dryness occurring during fruit development. The content of a relative chlorophyll (SPA D value) of the apple leaves on eastern side of the trees was lower than western and southern sides under drought occurring du ring fruit devclop111ent Under sustained drought from first of July to August the SPAD value, the weight of leaves were larger and the stomata density was significantly larger than in the previous periods. There was a close positive significant correlations bet ween SPAD and stoma density both in the group with less sensitive to drought (r=0,8429) and in the large water demanded group (r=0,9209) equally. The rate of increase in SPAD values and the stoma density was slower in the group with drought tolerant, than in the group required good water supply. The varieties being sensitive to water deficite such as Akane. Pink Lady and Red Rome van Well have a l ready responded intensively to short time of drought by the increasing of carbohydrate and antioxidants product ions. At 42 days of sustained drought as soon as the level of carbohydrate in the leaves decreased, the antioxidant s contents of the leaves rised suddenly in the apple varieties with moderate water requirement s as Greensleeves and ldared. Gala apple variety seemed to be able to defend the drought for longer time because there was no change in relatively high level of carbohydrates and antioxidants of their leaves under severe drought during fruit development.