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  • Comparison of honeybee behaviour in blooming fruit plantations

    Field observations were made on the fl ower visiting behaviour of honeybee foragers in commercial fruit plantations of apricot, Japanese plums, sour cherry, apple and pear. The number of inspected cultivars was 18. The intensity of fl ower visiting by honey bees was markedly different when data of different fruit species are compared. Most intense bee activity was registered on the Japanese plums, somewhat less on apricots, the intensity diminished signifi cantly with apples and pears. Our data presented on the honeybee visitation of Japanese plums can be regarded as new fi nding because no information has been available so far on the relative attractiveness of this fruit species compared to European fruit tree species. Japanese plums were somewhat more attractive to honeybees than apricot and much more attractive than sour cherry, apple and pear. The behaviour of honeybees as visiting the blooming trees displayed specifi c differences according to the fruit species (apricot, sour cherry, pear), which coincide largely with earlier results. It is notable that the fl ower visiting behaviour of honeybees on Japanese plums has been found to be fairly similar to the same on European plums.

  • Results on mating disruption by sex pheromones against moth pests of apple in integrated and organic orchards

    The study was aimed to study that how mating disruption by hand applied dispensers can reduce the number of damage caused by Cydia pomonella, Adoxophyes orana and Pandemis heparana in four integrated and organic apple orchards. In the first orchard (Gacsály), protection against moth caterpillars ensured by IPM and conventional production systems were equally good, but worse than that of the orchard part where mating disruption was applied by 1000 dispensers/ha. In second orchard (Nyírbogdány), the highest incidence of codling moth damage was measured in the hilly part (17%), while in the plot where 440 dispensers/ha pheromone dosage was applied, the damage incidence was 11%. The smallest damage incidence was at the flat part, where 666 dispensers /ha was applied. In the third and fourth orchards (Eperjeske), codling moth damage on fruits was below 7% in the larger and smaller orchards where 1000 dispensers/ha was applied. At Eperjeske, the codling moth damage increased by 32.3% in the field treated with Bacillus thuringiensis product but without using mating disruption. The results verified that the use of 1000 dispensers/ha as suggested by the manufactures is essential, especially in the first year of application. The results also suggested that better results can be achieved in flat areas and the larger plot size also enables a more efficient reduction of the damage.

  • Scab resistance in Malus sp. progenies - inheritance and resistance stability

    Susceptibility of progenies of some Ma/us species to apple scab was evaluated. Susceptibility of hybrid families was observed first in greenhouse after artificial inoculations by the suspension of the pathogen, Venturia inaequalis (Cooke) Wint., then in open field. The Hungarian type of Malus floribunda, which proved to be scab resistant in our examinations, has a positive effect on the segregation of progenies to resistant and susceptible individuals as a male parent, not depending on the rate of susceptibility of the other parent. However, the German type of Malus floribunda and Malus prunifolia act as dominant, highly susceptible parents.

    Malus x purpurea and Malus baccata, which proved to be highly susceptible to apple scab in open field and in artificial inoculations, transmits its susceptibility only slightly to its progenies as a male parent.

    According to our experiments, the inheritance of scab resistance of Malus floribunda cannot be considered as monogenic, as published by other authors.

    Scab susceptibility of parents influences the segregation of progenies to resistant or susceptible individuals. The moderately scab susceptible `Idared' as female parent has a statistically proved positive effect on the segregation of its progenies.

    More factors indicate the appearance of a new race of Venturia inaequalis (Cke.) Wint.: change of the symptoms in the greenhouse; considerable increase of susceptible individuals after greenhouse inoculation in 1997; more and more progenies of the male parent Malus floribunda became susceptible to scab in open field.

  • Comparative economic analysis of superintensive and intensive apple orchards

    The objective of thsi study was to compare economic aspects of superintensive and intensive apple production.
    According to our results, conclusions and recommendations regarding the establishment of superintensive orchards are the followings: A yield of 60 tons per hectare in the average of the mature years provide a quite late payback, in this way yield losses should be avoided in the plantation of such a huge capital requirement. When yield losses happen, which cannot be avoided or may be avoided only in a limited way, up to 65 to 70 tons per hectare yield should be reached even in good years, in order to yield the average 60 tons per hectare in the long run. In this case yield losses from production technological mistakes must not be arisen. Inputs and professional expertise should be used in a maximum way in order to reach yields ensuring profitable production. Investment subsidies may ensure safer return. The return of a superintensive orchard from totally own sources may be risky under the domestic marketing conditions and selling prices, it is strongly uncertain.

  • Characterization of quince (Cydonia oblonga Mill.) cultivars using SSR markers developed for apple

    Quince (Cydonia oblongaMill.) is a minor fruit crop, which is primarily used for marmalade, jam and sauce.Very few quince cultivars are known all over the world and in many cases similar names are used for presumably different cultivars. The aim of the present study was to evaluate and characterize the genetic diversity of 36 quince cultivars and selections with SSR markers. Seven out of 8 SSR markers designed from apple sequences could successfully yield amplification also in quince cultivars. Number of alleles per locus ranged from 2 to 3 alleles. These allele numbers are quite low when compared to apple. It is supposed to be the consequence of a genetic bottleneck. In spite of the low allele number per locus, the 36 quince cultivars formed 30 different genotypes. The ratio of homozygosity was low, which might be coupled with the self-(in)compatibility phenotype of quinces. SSR markers proved unable to differentiate putatively closely related cultivars (e.g. ‘Bereczki’ and ‘Bereczki bôtermő’). In general, the level of polymorphism among the tested quince genotypes was much restricted due to the low allele number detected. However, it must be considered that the number of analysed SSR loci is not enough high to estimate the overall heterozygosity of the quince genome. Further experiments are needed and the SSR markers proved to be a reliable and useful tool for such analyses.

  • New in vitro micrografting method for apple by sticking

    The requirements for in vitro micrografting in apple are described. In vitro multiplicated shoots of cv. Royal Gala were the sources of rootstocks and scions after different pre-treatment, respectively. Oxidative browning of cut surfaces could be inhibited by the use of antioxidant mixture during grafting process. Scion base cut in v-shape was stuck by 1% agar-agar solution into the vertical slit of rootstock. There was no any displacement and the rate of fused and further developed grafts was 95 percent. Agar-agar between the rootstock and scion made the transport of different materials possible and hold the graft units together until the fusion took place. Fusion was proved also by histological studies. Some of in vitro micrografts were planted and acclimatisated and the survival was 100 percent.

  • Apple allergens as affected by cultivation technolog and variental factors

    Our objective was to study the effect of organic farming and area of cultivation on the allergen content of apple varieties by quantification of the major allergens (Mal d 1 and Mal d 2) using allergen-specific ELISA. The obtained results showed that except Idared IX. 29. most of examined varieties, when cultivated under organic farming conditions, contained lower level of Mal d1 allergen than those produced with integrated farming. The different varieties were found to vary substantially in theirMal d 1 allergen content. Furthermore, with some varieties the area of cultivation affected to some extent the content of Mal d 1 allergen.

  • The effects of ACS (1-aminocyclopropane-l-carboxylate synthase) gene down regulation on ethylene production and fruit softening in transgenic apple

    A detailed examination of the production of ethylene and other ripening parameters during storage period has been undertaken in transgenic apple fruits, where the ethylene biosynthesis was inhibited by antisense ACS (l-aminocyclopropane-l-carboxylate synthase) gene. Data indicate down regulation of ethylene production, softening and spoilage in some transgenic lines. In some cases ethylene production was inhibited for over 90 percent, considerable reduction of softening and spoilage was observed probably due to the reduced activity of cell wall degradable enzymes. ACS activity was also monitored during ripening. The fruits of the best transgenic lines could be stored for minimum 4-5 months longer under 5 °C cold room storage conditions and one month longer at normal room temperature. This molecular approach can provide an alternative way to replace the commonly used and costly atmospheric storage of fruits.

  • Fruit coloration of apple cultivars

    One of the most important parameter of apple cultivars is the scale and the intensity of the coloration of fruits. Nowadays among the bicolour cultivars those are the most saleable which have the highest and darkest fruit coloration. In our three years old study cultivars born with bud mutation and cross breading were examined, which have superior coloration peculiarities than their parental cultivars. According to our results among the observed cultivars the cvs. ’Gala Decarli-Fendeca’, ’Galaval’, ’Wilton’s Red Jonaprince’, ’Early Red One’ and ’Red Cap Valtod’ reached favourable high fruit surface colour (80-100%) regardless the vintage effect. Concerning the colour intensity, that is the darkness of the red colour most of the cultivars (‘Gala Venus Fengal’, ‘Gala Fendeca-Fendeca’, ‘Galaval’, ‘Jeromine’, ‘Red Topaz’, ‘Early Red One’, ‘Crimson Crisp’, ‘Wilton’s Red Jonaprince’) showed excellent values (4,5-5,0). Based on the fruit surface colour and the fruit colour intensity a new index number, the fruit coloration index was created by us, which describes the coloration features in a complex way.

  • Effect of pruning intensity on performance of apple cultivars in environmentally friendly production systems

    The two worldwide accepted environmentally freindly production systems are integrated and organic. The two systems shows considerably differences in several practical production technology elements. These effects come forward in generative processes (e.g. flowering, fruit setting) and vegetative features (e.g. growth). The aim of our study was to study the effect of pruning intensity on growth features of cultivars in integrated and organic apple production. In early spring of 2009, we determined two pruning intensities (strong and week) on six scab resistant and tolerant cultivars. Strong pruning resulted in stronger shoot growth for all cultivars compared to weak pruning. It is obvious that pruning intensity had more effect on vegetative performance than conditional differences originates from integrated and organic production.

  • A short introduction of new apple varieties obtained

    A short introduction of new apple varieties obtained

  • Comparative analysis of the production risk of major fruit species

    Hungary possesses excellent agri-ecological potentials even in an international comparison. Despite their decreasing economic weight, agriculture and food production are of great significance, since the supply of the population with high quality and inexpensive food is a fundamental social demand and one of the essentials of the quality of life. The development of vegetable and food production is of great importance both from the aspect of healthy nutrition and comparative advantages (cheap workforce, professional expertise, traditions of production, climate favourable for quality). Within the Hungarian fruit production apple and sour cherry are essential branches in virtue of their significance. It is widely known, that – though to a different extent in the case of certain fruit varieties – satisfaction of the need for appropriate habitat is one of the important conditions of a decent quality and secure production. In my research, I analyse the territorial distribution, production standard and production risk of the Hungarian apple and sour cherry branches. I did not have the opportunity – because of the imperfections of the database – to compare long time series, therefore I examine the random effects affecting production by using the data of 3 years (they have the same content). I ranked and assessed each habitat and the production risks of certain fruit species compared to each other on the basis of indexes of relative deviation.

  • Effects of aromatic cytokinins on structural characteristics of leaves and their post- effects on subsequent shoot regeneration from in vitro apple leaves of 'Royal Gala'

    The effects of different aromatic cytokinins applied in different concentrations and combinations were investigated on the histology of in vitro apple leaves and their post-effects on subsequent shoot regeneration from these leaves were studied. Great differences in the anatomical structure of leaves could be detected originating from media containing different types and concentrations of aromatic cytokinins. The number of regenerated shoots per explant and the organogenetic index were used for the evaluation of the post-effect of aromatic cytokinins on shoot regeneration. The histological structure of leaves used for regeneration and their regeneration response showed a good correlation. When the pre-treatment caused a juvenile-like or less-differentiated structure, the number of regenerated shoots per explant increased and often vitrification also decreased and consequently the organogenetic index also increased. A strong interaction between cytokinin-content (type and concentration) of the pre-treatment medium and that of the regeneration medium could also be detected.

  • Fire blight (Erwinia amylovora) resistance in apple varieties associated with molecular markers

    The invasive bacterial disease fire blight, caused by Erwinia amylovora has the potential to destroy fruit tree orchards all over Europe. Effective plant protection methods are lacking in many countries, highlighting the increasing importance placed on identification of germplasm with heritable disease resistance. Recent l y. a promising QTL (quantitative trait locus) was identified on linkage group 7 in the apple cultivar 'Fiesta· which is derived from ·cox's Orange Pippin' . I n the present study, 144 Swedish and foreign apple cultivars were analysed with the SCAR markers AE I 0-375 and GE-8019. which flank-. this QTL. Twenty-nine of the analysed cultivars had both markers. 78 had either AE I 0-375 or GE-8019, and 37 cultivars did not carry an) of the two markers. Seventeen cultivars. 7 with both markers and I 0 not having either of the two markers, were then inocoluted with the bacterium in a 4uaran1i ne greenhouse test. Cultivars carrying both DNA markers were significantly less susceptible than cultivars lacking the markers, P<0.001. Cultivars that were most resistant had both markers and had 'Cox· in their pedigree. Unrelated cultivars with the markers may still lack the QTL.

  • Effects of weather characteristics on blooming dates in an apple gene bank plantation between 1984 and 2001

    The aims of this paper was to investigate the flowering characteristic of apples and their relationship to meteorological parameters. The trees observed are grown at Ujfehert6, Eastern Hungary in the plantation of an assortment (gene bank) with 586 apple varieties. Each of the varieties were observed as for their dates of subsequent phenophases, the beginning of bloom, main bloom and the end of bloom over a period between 1984 and 2001. During this period the meteorological data-base keeps the following variables: daily means of temperature (°C), daily maximum temperature (°C), daily minimum temperature (°C), daily precipitation sums (mm), daily sums of sunny hours, daily means of the differences between the day-time and night-time temperatures (°C), average differences between temperatures of successive daily means (°C). Between the 90th and 147th day of the year over the 18 years of observation. The early blooming varieties start blooming at 10-21 April. The varieties of intermediate bloom start at the interval 20 April to 3 May, whereas the late blooming group start at 2-10 May. Among the meteorological variables of the former autumnal and hibernal periods, the hibernal maxima were the most active factor influencing the start of bloom in the subsequent spring.

  • Relationship between several meteorological factors and phenological features of apple cultivars

    The trees observed are grown at Ofeherto, Eastern Hungary in the plantation of an assortment (gene bank) with 586 apple cultivars. Each of the cultivars were observed as for their dates of subsequent phenophases, the beginning of bloom, main bloom and the end of bloom over a period between 1984 and 2001. during this period the meteorological data-base keeps the following variables: daily means of temperature (°C), daily maximum temperature (°C), daily minimum temperature (°C), daily precipitation sums (mm), daily sums of sunny hours, daily means of the differences between the day-time and night-time temperatures (°C), average differences between temperatures of successive daily means (°C). Between the 90th and 147th day of the year over the 18 years of observation. The early blooming cultivars start blooming at 10-21April. The cultivars of intermediate bloom start at the interval 20 April to 3 May, whereas the late blooming group start at 2-10 May. Among the meteorological variables of the former autumnal and hibernal periods, the hibernal maxima were the most active factor influencing the start of bloom in the subsequent spring.

  • Pruning and incidences of diseases and pests in environmentally oriented apple growing systems: some aspects

    In Hungary, fruit growers are increasingly interested in environmentally oriented growing methods, such as organic and integrated systems. The main factor in creating such systems is the establishment of a system of cultivar-pruning-plant protection based on production technology. Therefore, our aim was to examine the susceptibility of apple cultivars to diseases and pests and the effect of pruning technique on diseases and pests in organic and integrated growing systems.

    Two pathogens (Venturia inaequalis, Podosphaera leucotricha) and two pests (Leueoptera malifoliella, Pannonychus ulmi) were observed in organic and integrated systems under "strong" and "weak" pruning techniques. Our results showed that, compared to integrated production, the pathogens and pests infected the trees more in the organic system. The pruning technique affected mainly the cultivars susceptible to diseases and pests. In general, the "weak" pruning technique correlated with a higher level of damage caused by diseases and pests than the "strong" pruning technique, especially in the organic growing system. The reason that techniques should be carefully chosen is that shoots grow faster and more vigorously after employing the "strong" pruning technique. This supports a better preservation of the trees, as a result of reduced susceptibility of plant tissues to diseases and pests.

  • The inheritance and durability of scab resistance in apple progenies

    In order to select the appropriate parent cultivars and maintain the durability of resistance, it is important to clarify the mechanisms of inheritance of scab resistance depending on the parents. It has been known that the progeny segregation ratios based on scab-resistance do not depend only on the genotype of the resistance locus but also on the genetical makeup of the donor and recipient parents as well as on the susceptible parent.

    The aim of this study has been to demonstrate what factors in the Vf, Vr and VA scab-resistant cultivars — combined with susceptible and resistant parents — affect the inheritance and durability of resistance in seedlings in their first 4 year's growing four years' growth. After inoculating apple seedlings sown in 2001 with the suspension of Venturia inaequalis (Cke.) Wint. in the greenhouse, we studied the segregation ratios of the progenies into reaction classes. Seedlings showing resistance in the greenhouse were also evaluated for scab-resistance after they had been moved to the field and had naturally been infected with the pathogen in 2002 and 2004.

    The majority of our results obtained in the greenhouse test, similarly to earlier experiences, have not justified monogenic inheritance at the phenotypic level. The effect of susceptible parent cultivars on the segregation ratio of progenies have become apparent again. The high infection rate of seedlings in the field trials, which had previously exhibited varying degrees of resistance in the greenhouse test, has raised concern. Our data has raised further doubts, concerning the durability of Vf resistance in Hungary. It is assumed that the composition of natural field populations of Venturia inaequalis in Szigetcsép has changed. The complexity of Vf resistance has been confirmed. The high infection rate in the progenies derived from Vf resistant cultivars draws the attention to the importance of utilizing additional sources of resistance.

  • Contributions to the resumption of growth in ecodormant buds of apple

    The resumption of development in ecodormant buds in terms of establishing a functional vascular connection between the inflorescence primordia and spur tissues in apple trees was investigated. Differentiation of the xylem elements could be observed first in the pedicel of the flower primordium, in the middle of January. Much later (at the beginning of April) there were mature xylem vessels in the wall of the receptacle and, merely a procambial strand for the ovule primordium which was at this time an undifferentiated protrusion of meristematic cells, only. As for phenological development of buds incubated at a temperature of 20 °C, it was the slowest in buds sampled in January, faster in buds sampled in the middle of February and, buds from the middle of March responded very quickly. The function of temperatures needed both for xylem differentiation and for the flower primordium to achieve maturity is pointed out. The nature of frost damage in vessel elements, as well the relationship between chilling requirement and growth features of apple cultivars will be discussed.

  • Genetic diversity in a collection of apple (Malus x domestica Borkh.) cultivars as revealed by RAPD markers

    A collection of 151 apple cultivars was investigated with 7 RAPD primers generating 71 informative bands, to evaluate genetic variability and relatedness. All cultivars presumably derived through genetic recombination were distinguished whereas identical DNA profiles indicated that some cultivars had arisen as sports. A cluster analysis and a PCO did not reveal any distinct geographic patterns, but there was a weak tendency for Swedish and foreign cultivars to differentiate.. Many cultivars however clustered together with either one of their parents or with siblings. Overall genetic diversity among the 151 cultivars was estimated with Nei's diversity index (H), 0.269, and with Shannon's index (H'), 0.594. The cultivars were also analysed in six groups, according to time of origination and country of origin, with an average H = 0.262 and H' = 0.546. No major differences in genetic diversity were observed over time or space, although the group with recent, foreign cultivars had the lowest diversity (FL = 0.235, H' = 0.493). Comparison between the entire material and a subset with 94 mandate cultivars chosen for preservation in Sweden, showed similar genetic diversity: HFN.rj1E = 0.268, frE,NTIRE, = 0.593 and HMANDATE = 0.263, WMANDATE = 0.575. No major differences in band frequencies were observed between these two sets, but 5 RAPD bands were missing in the set with mandate cultivars.

  • Identification of the apple firmness: two case studies

    Firmness tests were performed with peeled and entire fruits of Elstar and Jonagold apple cultivars for identification and comparison. The normal distribution of the tested population was acceptable (level: 95%). The green and the red sides did not show differences within the cultivar but they were different in firmness. There was not significant difference between the flesh tissue firmness values, however the firmness of the entire (not peeled) fruits was different. This result was caused by the effect of the peel. The variability of the firmness with Jonagold was caused by the peel, but such a result was not found with Elstar. The test of the peel effect would be interesting with different cultivars and a sequence according to the firmness can be estimated.


  • Preliminary study on micro area based spatial distribution of powdery mildew in an organic apple orchard

    In this study, the objective was to report a preliminary study on micro area based spatial distribution of powdery mildew in an organic apple orchard. Results showed that number of symptomatic plant part ranged between 11 and 20 on shoot and between 9 and 24 on fruit. Number of asymptomatic plant part ranged between 85 and 109 on shoot and between 133 and 206 on fruit. Disease incidence ranged between 13.8 and 17.6% on shoot and between 9.1 and 11.3% on fruit. Disease aggregation index ranged between 0.098 and 0.228 on shoot and between 0.043 and 0.108 on fruit. One of the four trees showed significant within canopy aggregation of disease for shoot powdery mildew symptoms in both years. For leaf powdery mildew, all tree exhibited random patterns in both years.

  • The effect of the intensity and method of pruning on the growth and yield of the apple variety ’Idared’ under conditions of ecological and integrated growing systems

    Summary: On the Experimental Farm of the Debrecen University at Pallag, a factorial experiment has been started at springtime of 2008 on an orchard of 12 year old apple trees ’Idared’ grafts on M 26 understocks. The first factor was the growing system (integrated versus ecological), the second was the intensity of pruning (strong versus moderate thinning of the crown), whereas the third was the method of pruning (shortening versus thinning of individual shoots). Measurements have been concentrated on shoot growth, flower initiation, fruit set and accumulated yield of two successive seasons. The following conclusions are made.
    – In the ecological growing system, strong thinning proved to be beneficial for growth as well as for fruit bearing. – Strong thinning combined with shortening of shoots diminished yield in the first year, whereas
    moderate thinning combined with shortening of shoots caused favourable growth and fruit bearing.
    – In the ecological growing system, the moderate shoot growth was associated with better flower initiation, which increases the chances of alternate yielding.
    – According to our results, the flower initiation of the ‘Idared’ was stimulated univocally by the thinning of shoots regardless of the intensity of pruning.
    The right choice of the intensity and method of pruning is a decisive moment of a successful yield in the ecological apple growing system

  • Prediction infection risk on the basis of weather-related factors and Erwinia amylovora colonization in apple and pear flowers

    Current infection risk prediction models utilize environmental parameters and field records, but do not take into account the estimated inoculum potential within the orchard. The object of this study was to survey the accuracy of three simple prediction methods under Hungarian climatic conditions, which could easily be used by the farmers. We also tested whether the accuracy of infection risk predictions can be improved by taking into consideration the incidence and/or rate of flower colonization by Erwinia amylovora.

    After preliminary investigations in 1999-2001, data concerning the weather-related infection risk were recorded in 5 apple and 1 pear orchards in 2002, and in 12 apple and I pear orchards in 2003. The weather data were processed by the easy-to-use risk assessment models of the mean temperature prediction line (MTL), Smith's Cougarblight 98C and Billing's integrated system (BIS), and by the MaryblytTM 4.3 computer-assisted model for reference. The population size of E. amylovora in the flower samples was estimated within an order of magnitude by PCR.

    For all years and orchards tested, Maryblyt indicated 35 days on which there was an acute infection risk. The same days were indicated by all 3 methods in 23 cases (66%), 8 days were indicated by 2 methods (23%) and 4 days were indicated by 1 method only. A similarly good correlation was found for prediction of the date of the first massive infection risk: in 2003, for instance, there was a perfectly consistent prediction by all 4 models in 9 of the 13 participating orchards. A coincidental forecast was provided by 3 of the 4 models in the other 4 orchards.

    The results indicate that any of the risk assessment models could provide an increased accuracy of the actual infection risk prediction if combined with an estimation of the incidence of Erwinia amylovora colonization in the open flowers. We found no convincing differences in the size of the epiphytic population in flowers of cultivars possessing high or low susceptibility to Erwinia amylovora.

    We conclude that the easy-to-use methods tested could be used by the fanners to recognize weather-related risks, especially when coupled with an estimation of the proportion of the pathogen-infested flowers. This local prediction would provide rapid information (faster than the regional forecast systems) specifically for a given orchard.

  • Flower production of apple varieties grown by different environmental technologies

    The flower production of four apple varieties have been observed grown in integrated and in ecological growing technologies during the spring of 2010. The trees produced in the last year (2009) nearly similar yields, so the effect of the technologies may causen differences in the production of flowers. According to our results, the ecological technology produced higher flower densities in the majority of variables, which was in relation with the vigor, branching and thickening of the trunks. The varieties observed displayed substantial differences in the appearance of fruiting structures of different age on the branches. This information may prove to be essential for the decisions to be made in timing and severity at the pruning operations.