Frost tolerance of pear cultivars was checked after artificial cold treatment in 2003-2005. Limbs collected during the endodormancy were exposed in a climatic chamber for 24 hours to —25; —28 °C, while those collected in the ecodormancy were kept at —15 and —18 °C. Frost damages of buds were registered according to a visually defined...scale, then peroxidase (POD), polyphenol oxidase (PPO) enzyme activities and carbohydrate contents were checked in buds and spur-part below the buds. POD activity of untreated control in tissue below buds was higher than in the buds, which were increasing continuously during the endodormancy and decreased at the end of the ecodormancy. During endodormancy, cold treatment of —25 and —28 °C effected different changes of enzyme activity in buds of the cultivars. In the ecodormancy, enzyme activities increased after a cold treatment of —15 °C, whereas the activities decreased significantly after —18 °C. `Kaiser' — susceptible to frost — with its higher values of both enzyme activities marked out from other cultivars, which is correlated with its stress response. Changes in carbohydrate components — especially in glucose — of buds monitored well the different stress responses of tolerant and resistant pear cultivars induced by frost stress.
The aim of the Hungarian apple breeding program started in the Department of Fruit Science was to find resistant apple cultivars against major diseases (scab, powdery mildew, fire blight). The outbreak of fire blight (Erwinia amylovora) in 1996 motivated us to search new resistant sources principally from old traditional apple cultivar...s. First of all, cultivars have been gathered since 1997 from Carpathia (Visk) and evaluated between 2001 and 2003. In this recent study evaluation of resistance of old Hungarian genotypes to fire blight collected from the English National Fruit Collection (Brogdale, Faversham) is presented.
13 old Hungarian apple cultivars in 2002, and 38 genotypes in 2005 have been evaluated. We used `Idared' and 'Jonathan M41' as susceptible controls and 'Liberty' and 'Remo' as resistant ones. Shoots of two-year-old potted plants were inoculated with a mixture of virulent E. amylovora isolates (Ea2, Ea60, Ea67) at a concentration of 5 x 108 cells/ml. Resistance of apple cultivars was evaluated weekly, four times after inoculation by disease severity of symptoms. Numbers of bacterial colonies in 1 cm length shoot were determined in the fourth week after infection.
8 cultivars in 2002 and 9 cultivars in 2005 displayed notable resistance to fire blight based on one-year data. Based on the coincident data of both years, out of the cultivars collected also from Carpathia ‘Pónyik', and `Sikulai' were found to be resistant and gene sources additional old Hungarian valuable apple genotypes could be selected: `Szabadkai szercsika' and `Tordai piros !davit'. The cultivar `Szemes alma' originated from Visk has proved to be recurrently resistant.
The number of bacterial cells in shoots of the investigated cultivars correlated with the severity of symptoms. With this method, which was introduced by us earlier, we can screen cultivars displaying weak visible symptoms, which cannot be proposed as a source of resistance because of their latent infection.
Pear cultivars of variable frost tolerance were tested as for frost injuries suffered as a consequence of artificial freezing temperatures during the endodormancy as well as the ecodormancy. Damages were registered according to a visually defined scale, then peroxidase and polyphenol-oxidase activity was checked in buds, spurs and limbs. Accord...ing to our results, 'Packham's Triumph' was the most frost tolerant cultivar. Regarding enzyme activity of both enzymes, the performance of cultivars displaying different susceptibility was also different in spurs as well as in buds. Results referring to the endodormancy were especially instructive. During the ecodormancy, data obtained at the same time indicated the differences existing between the developmental stages of dormancy in the respective cultivars.
Fire blight, a disease caused by the bacterium Erwinia amylovora (Burrill) Winslow et al., has been causing serious damage in Hungarian pear plantations since 1996. A prospective control measure could be the use of resistant cultivars. For that purpose ten pear cultivars have been tested under laboratory and greenhouse conditions for r...esistance to Erwinia amylovora strains collected in Hungary. Six of these cultivars are Hungarian ones of unknown origin, while four are traditional old varieties. Resistant cultivars should serve as germplasm for future breeding. Inoculations were made with a mixture of different pear isolates of the bacteria collected from various growing regions of Hungary (Ea 21, 23), at a density of 5x108 cells/ml. Susceptibility/resistance has been assessed on the basis of intensity of blight symptoms observed on shoots, flower parts and fruits. Cultivars were assigned to three susceptibility groups (low, moderate and high). Complete resistance was not found among the cultivars tested. The highest level of resistance was found in cultivar 'Kieffer', while the other cultivars displayed either moderate or high susceptibility to infection.
Research project has been initiated in 1999 with the aim of evaluating the degree of susceptibility/resistance of pear cultivars grown in Hungary to fire blight disease caused by Erwinia amylovora. The recently selected promising cultivars were also examined. Inoculation experiments were conducted in controlled greenhouse conditions be...cause of quarantine regulations in Hungary. Following the disease process, development of symptoms of plant organs (shoots, flower parts, fruits) was observed. Suspension of two E. amylovora strains (Ea 21, Ea 23) isolated from pear was used in a mixture (5x108 cells x m1-1) for the inoculation. Twenty-six pear cultivars were examined and grouped into four categories: low susceptibility, moderately susceptible, susceptible and very susceptible. Most of the cultivars were susceptible or very susceptible while some promising 'Eldorado', 'Harrow Delight' and `Hosui' showed low susceptibility.