A field experiment was conducted in an integrated apple orchard (Malus domestica Borkh.) established on a lowland chernozem soil in East-Hungary, to investigate if flower analysis could be used to diagnose the nutritional status of the trees. In April 2008, during full bloom, flowers and leaves were collected. Leaves were collected aga...in in August, at the standard sampling time from the same trees. The content of nitrogen, phosphorous, potassium, calcium magnesium and boron were measured in flowers and in leaves. Correlation analyses were carried out to establish the relation s between nutrient contents in same and different plant part s. In flowers the following ratio was found between nutrients: N:P: K:Ca:Mg:B -10: l.35:7: 1.7: I :0,02. From result s it was evident that flower as organ contain significant and comparable amount of nutrients like as leaf. The N, K and Ca content were higher in leaves than in flowers at full bloom. The opposite was true for B. The P and Mg content of flower were quite equal with leaf P and Mg at full bloom . All examined nutrients were significantly affected by cultivars both in flowers and leaves. Significant correlation, was found between flower P and leaf P, flower B and leaf B (P=O.O 1) and flower K and leaf K at blooming time (P=0.05). Significant, but weaker correlation was also found between flower K and leaf K and between flower Mg and leaf Mg al JOO days after full bloom (P=0.05). Moreover, strong, but negative correlation was observed between flower B and leaf B at 100 clays after full bloom (P=O.O 1). Within flowers, the strongest positive correlation was found between Mg and B content (P=O.O 1). Strong positive correlations were also recognised between flower K and flower N, Ca and Mg and between N and Ca in the flowers (P=0.01). The strongest correlation was found between K and P in leaves at full bloom (P=O.O 1 ). Strong significant correlation was observed between N and B in the leaves collected at standard sampling time (100 DAFB) (P=0.01). Strong, but negative correlations were found bet ween leaf Mg and leaf P, K and between leaf N and leaf P at 100 days after full bloom (P=O.O 1).
: Our study was carried out on 23 apricot and 9 sweet cherry cultivars in February 2005. Fruiting laterals were classified into four groups (0-10 cm, 10-20 cm, 20-40 cm and >40 cm) and then the density and setting of flower buds were evaluated and expressed as bud/cm. The flower bud density of four types of fruit bearing shoots and ...the changes in the frost resistance were studied. Shoots were collected from a young orchard in Gone (apricot), Siófok (sweet cherry) and Nagykutas (sweet cherry). There were significant differences among the cultivars in the density of flower buds. The number of flower buds/cm shoot length ranged between 0.91 and 2.20 in the average of the different fruit bearing shoot types on apricot. Based on the results, the bud density of shorter shoots is generally higher on apricot, but this is not valid for all cultivars. For cvs. Magyarkajszi and Ceglédi bíborkajszi, the highest flower bud density was detected on shoots of medium length (10-40 cm). There were fivefold and almost twofold (1.85) differences in bud density among cultivars on shoots shorter than 10 cm length and longer than 40 cm length, respectively. The ratio of the bud densities of the different types of shoots also ranged between wide boundaries. For cvs. Bayoto, Toyesi and Toyiba this ratio was 2.5-3.5, while for cv. Magyarkajszi it was 1.3.
In the average of fruit bearing shoots on sweet cherry, cv. Bigarreau Burlat (1.10 bud/cm) and cv. Germersdorfi 45 (0.61 bud/cm) had the largest and the lowest flower bud density, respectively. Among the fruit bearing shoots, the largest flower bud density was in the group of 0-10 cm fruiting laterals. Among cultivars, cv. Bigarreau Burlat had the largest bud density. In the groups of n- i 0 cm, 10-20 cm, 20-30 cm and 30-40 cm fruiting laterals, the lowest flower bud density was for cv. Linda, cv. Germersdorfi 45, cv. Ferrovia and cv. Sunburst, respectively. On cvs. Van and Bigarreau Burlat, large numbers of double-set flower buds were observed on the fruit bearing shoots longer than 20 cm. Fruit setting differed on the different types of fruit bearing shoots, with the lowest value measured on above 40 cm shoots. The highest fruit setting was observed on cv. Katalin, while the lowest value was measured on cv. Germersdorfi 3.
The seasonal dynamic of macro- and micronutrients uptake of a sweet cherry cultivar cv. 'Katalin' (Prunus avium L.) was studied according to apply different flower thinning techniques. Beside control treatment, three thinning treatments were performed: (I) thinning for I flower/inflorescence, (2) thinning for 2 flower/inflorescence, (3...) thinning for 3 flower/inflorescence. Soil examination was carried out to establish the growing conditions of orchard site. Moreover, for studying the temporal dynamic of nutrient uptake plant analytical examination was performed four times per year based on leaf collecting according to the phenological phases. It was found that the macro- and micronutrients contents of leaves were showed significant differences between treatments before ripening, at ripening and after ripening stage. It was found that thinning has influence on mineral composition of leaf. Flower removal unbalanced the equilibrium of generative and vegetative processes. The applied manual flower thinning treatment resulted improving vegetative processes like nutrient uptake and storage.
In 164 varieties of five stone fruit species, counts of flower buds, flowers and fruits set have been performed, regularly, between 1982 and 2002. The critical number and sample size has been determined for the purpose to estimate the yielding potential of peach plantations. For a rapid test, 10 shoots per variety are recommended. In sour cherr...y and peach varieties, the number and ratio of leaf and flower buds has been assessed on bearing shoots of different length.
The typical flower bud density of 129 peach varieties varies, as a rule, between 0.13 and 1.10 bud/cm. Three groups of flower-bud-densities could be distinguished: low (0-0.40 bud/cm), intermediate (0.41-0.60 bud/cm), high (more than 0.60 bud/cm). About 62% of varieties belong to the intermediate group. Negative correlation has been found between flower density and relative fruit set, whereas positive correlation between flower density and fruit yield.
The results are utilised in the description and choice of varieties, moreover, in choosing of optimal pruning policies. Varieties of high flower bud densities are recommended to be preferred for growing sites with frequent late frosts. Abundantly yielding varieties of low vegetative vigour are to be pruned more severely than those characterised by low yields, vigorous growth and low flower density. Sour cherry varieties, which are inclined to grow "whips" ought to be stimulated to grow longer shoots (40-50 cm per year), than varieties woid of that tendency (30-40 cm).
Angel's trumpet (Danira = Brugmansia arhorea) is a common, popular ornamental plant in Hungary. On the basis of thin layer chromatographic and densitometric alkaloid studies of leaf and flower samples collected from several places in Somogy and Baranya counties it can be stated that in samples of cultivars with different flower colour,... taken approximately at the same time, the atropine and scopolamine content varies: there are samples free of alkaloids, but most of them are rich in alkaloids. Although the means do not reflect the extremes, they are suitable for determining the alkaloid accumulating capacity of flowers. Generally the amount of atropine and scopolamine is significant both in the leaf and the flower. It is conspicuous that the flower can be characterised by an extremely high scopolamine content (mean in mg/g dry matter of leaf: atropine 0.34, scopolamine 0.31; of flower: atropine 0.26, scopolamine 0.85). Thus it can be stated that the leaf, and especially the flower of angel's trumpet is a potential hallucinogen, just like in the case of Datura stramonium.
The flower bud development is an especially complex process from initiation to blooming. Our main objective was to analyze paradormancy; the first stage of this process in our collection of varieties in the vicinity of Budapest, in Hungary. We have analyzed three varieties with different winter hardiness. `Ceglédi bíborkajszi' is one of the m...ost frost susceptible in our collection of varieties, when the flower bud differentiation started in early August, and all flower organ initials evolved in beginning of September. The flower bud differentiation of the most winter hardy variety, `Rózsakajszi C.1406' started in the end of August, and all flower organs were noticed at middle of September. `Gönci magyar kajszi' is a medium frost hardiness apricot variety, its phenological process composes transition between two mentioned above varieties.
The phenological processes of flower bud development of stone fruits during dormancy are not thoroughly known. The yield of these species, especially of almond, apricot and peach is determined basically by dormancy of flower buds, the survival rate of buds during winter frosts and by their ability to develop normal floral organs in the next spr...ing. After the initiation of floral primordia, flower bud development is taking place in continuous space until blooming, though at different speed characteristic to the species. To study flower bud development during dormancy we applied two alternative methods in different genotypes of almond, apricot and peach: (1) examination of pollen development (microsporogenesis), and (2) the measurement of pistil length. The samples were collected from the central part of Hungary during the dormancy period of 2004/2005. The three fruit species differed significantly in the speed of flower bud development, it was the quickest in almond, followed by apricot and peach. In addition to the species, there were significant differences in the process of microsporogenesis and pistil development between genotypes within species and also between the different types of shoots on which the buds were located. On short shoots buds developed at a higher speed, than on long shoots. Based on our observations, on the short shoots the period of endodormancy was shorter with 5-30 days, according to genotypes, compared to the long shoots. This difference, however, decreased to 2-3 days by the time of blooming.
Response of “Badamy sefid” Pistachio trees to spraying of fertilizer was studied over two years (2006–2007). The boron and zinc fertilizer were used just on swelling time of female flower bud in compare to no fertilization (control). Also nutritional solution combined of nitrogen (400 ppm), phosphorus (P2O5) (380 ppm), potasium (K2O) (520... ppm), Fe (5 ppm), Cu (2 ppm), Zn (2 ppm), Mn (2 ppm) in 1000 liter water per hectare sprayed at first week of May, third week of June and July). The concentration of some macro and micro elements in flower bud and in leaves, also productivity (g/shoot sectional area) mean nut weight, fresh weight of nut per cm2 branch cross sectional area, blanks nuts %, non-split nut %, new shoot growth length after cessation of growth and remained flower bud (%) at the next spring were recorded for the different treatments. The results showed that boron and zinc concentration increased in the bud of sprayed trees in compare to control. Application of nutritional solution decreased the flower bud abscission, also resulted in increased vegetative growth, nut weight, and productivity of trees. In conclusion, spraying of fertilizers in the suitable time to the pistachio trees might be a useful method in decreasing flower bud abscission and mitigating the alternate bearing.
In the small demonstration orchard of the College Faculty of Horticulture at Kecskemét the blooming time, the flower density and the honeybee activity was observed at a number of cultivars of 20 flower species during four consecutive years.
Fruit crop species were in flower during 3-4 months altogether. The blooming period of them was ...classified into five groups as early (almond, apricot, gooseberry), middle early (sweet cherry, red currant, currant-gooseberry, black currant, white currant, peach, plum, sour cherry), middle late (pear, strawberry, apple), late (black elder, quince, medlar, raspberry, blackberry-raspberry) and very late blooming period (blackberry). The blooming period of the members of the groups of early and medium early blooming often coincided partly and the same happened between the medium and the medium late as well as between fruits of late and very late flowering.
The flower density of some fruit species is extremely variable (currant-gooseberry, medlar), while at others it is fairly stable and evenly dense in consecutive years (sour cherry, sweet cherry, strawberry). At other fruit species it is moderately changeable. Some fruit species tended to attract more honeybees than others (plum, apple, quince, medlar) and some of them tended to attract much less (black elder, pear) but most species can be regarded as of medium attractivity.
On the flowers of some fruit species (pear, strawberry, quince) honeybees gathered pollen predominantly. At most fruit species however pollen and nectar gathering behaviour seemed to be gradually changing during the season. Namely most honeybees tended to gather pollen at the flowers of the early blooming fruit species, but on the other hand typical foraging behaviour gradually shifted to nectar gathering at the flowers of fruit species of moderate and late blooming periods.
Detailed studies and comparisons were carried out on those flower characters of sour cherry cultivars that may affect bee pollination of flowers. Flower characters of sour cherry are fairly similar to other temperate zone fruit tree species. Their relatively small flowers distinguish the Cigánymeggy-types of cultivars from the flowers of tart ...cherries cultivars that are conspicuously larger, almost as large as the sweet cherry flowers. The relative position of flower organs was much more variable according to the season than according to the cultivars. So the differences were rather the consequences of seasonal effects than of variety features of sour cherry cultivars. As far as individual cultivars are concerned differences in the nectar production and the sugar concentration are revealed rather between groups of cultivars than between individual cultivars. The pollen production of flowers was extremely changeable in consecutive years. Most honeybees collected nectar at sour cherry flowers; pure pollen gatherers and mixed behaviour bees were half as frequent but differences among the behaviour of honeybees according to cultivars cannot be stated. The fidelity of honeybees to sour cherry is less expressed than to some other fruit tree species. Accordingly, it is very strongly suggested to take the competitive effect other plant species (weeds) flowering in and around the orchard carefully into account when organizing additional bee pollination in sour cherry plantations. Several sour cherry cultivars possess more or less self-fertilization capacity but this is greatly changeable according to the season. It has been proved that self-sterile sour cherry cultivars are sensitive even on the partial restriction of the effective time of bee pollination and it is to be stressed too that even in the case of partly self-fruitful cultivars bee pollination is also vital in yield formation because medium or strong restriction of the effective bee pollination period is of a definite negative effect on their fruit set and yield. In years with unfavourable weather the yield can dramatically be reduced sometimes down to nil. However, very high fruit set is also unfavourable because a negative correlation was detected between the final set and the mean mass of fruits.
Hungary is located on the northern boundary of economical apricot and peach production. The present assortment of varieties and the actual, not adequately selected growing sites cause a permanent risk of winter and spring frosts in their cultivation. The field observations are performed at Debrecen, the Experiment Station Pallag, on 20 apricot ...and 21 peach varieties. The flower density among the varieties attained 3-4-fold differences. Three categories have been suggested for both species. The density was inferior in Hungary established varieties compared with the new varieties of foreign origin. The minimum temperatures of January 9, 2009 was –17,6 °C , and of December 21, 2009 also –17,6 °C. In some varieties the damage of buds attained 100%. For estimating the yield security, we need to consider also the flower density and the frost damage together. For a mediocre yield, we need a flower density in both species of at least 0.2 living bud/cm. The results confirm the statement that in Hungary, the revision of growing sites is indispensable in order to develop a profitable and competitive apricot and peach growing industry.
Determination of flower microphenology for selecting the suitable pollinizer for sour cherry cultivars is of significant importance. In order to study the flower microphenology of Hungarian sour cherry (Bőtermő, Érdi jubileum and Cigány) cultivars in Mashhad climatic conditions, an experiment was conducted in I998. 1999, 2...005 and 2006, using a completely randomized design with ten replications. The phenological stages were determined from before opening up to browning phase of stigma. Duration of pollen shedding, stigma receptivity and climatic factors were measured. The relative time of flowering between cultivars varied from year to year. The data indicate, the thermal variation strongly contributes to significant differences in duration of stigma viability, although there wasn't a significant difference between cultivars in anther dehiscence period. Phenological stages of flowers are highly affected by meteorological factors in various years.
During our experiment, the effect of Ferbanat L concentrations were examined by Petunia x grandiflora ‘Musica Blue’ production. The leaf and shoot length, number of flower buds, diameter of flowers, and the date of appearing the first buds were measured. The solution of Ferbanat L in 0.1 % concentration was the most effective on shoot lengt...h (21.7 cm). Remarkable increase was observed by the other treatment groups as well comparing to the control group (5.6 cm), the plants treated with solution of Ferbanat L 0.2% (16.5 cm) and 0.3% (14.4 cm) had significant effect as well. The nano-fertilizer had not positive effect on the other examined parameters as leaf and flower size, number of flower buds or chlorophyll content. The culture period shortened five days.
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 mod...erate 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
This review evaluated previous studies on the effect of pesticide use on flower formation and fertility of some fruit species. The study was divided into two parts. First part of the overview will evaluate the most commonly used fungicides on pollen toxicity and their germination ability under fungicide exposure on different fruit species. Effe...ct of fungicides on fruit set was also critically reviewed. Second part of the study summarised those few studies which determined the effect of some insecticides and acaricides on flower formation and fertility.
Between 1950-1989, the production and trade of ornamental plants in Hungary was characterised by meeting the demands of the home and that of the Eastern-Block market and by a minimal external trade with the Western countries. After the socio-economical changes in 1989/90, the trade of flowers gradually became liberalised and the Hungarian growe...rs had to face the concurrency of steadily increasing import from the West and from all over the World. This tendency coincided with the physical and mental degradation (outdating) of most of the glasshouses, along with the decline of several former large growers of the communist type (state or cooperative), the appearance and growth of new private companies and the building (rebuilding) of new plastic houses and (mainly second-hand) glasshouses. In spite of the above-listed problems, the production as a whole did not (or only slightly) decrease and/or even an increase occured in many areas mainly in the open-ground production. In 1998, the protected flower cultivation comprised round 110 ha of glasshouses, 180-220 ha of plastic structures and 3-5 ha of frames, with the main crops as follows: cut flowers and cut foliage 220-240 ha; pot plants (with geraniums) 30-40 ha; bedding plants (without geraniums) 20-25 ha; "transit--greenhouses (for redistribution only) 3-5 ha: other (eg. propagation of woody ornamentals) 3-5 ha. The structure of open-ground production was as follows: Total 1150-1210 ha, including: Nursery products: woody ornamentals 880 ha; perennials 10-15 ha; rose bushes 30-35 ha. Other open-ground crops: flower bulbs 50-60 ha; dried flowers 130-140 ha; open-ground cut flowers 25-30 ha; flower seed 30-35 ha; (biennial) bedding plants 10-15 ha.
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 t...echnology 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.
Frost damage is one of the most important risks of apple production. Outstanding importance has been attributed to the frost resistance of flower-buds as decisive sites of fruit production. Browning of plants parts and tissues exposed to natural weather adversities are considered as effects of frost. In Hungary, frost damage on flower buds of b...oth the market and new cultivars has not been assessed earlier. Observations referring to the consequences of frost damages of over four critical years, marked by their peculiar winter and spring frost hazards. Parallel observations have been made in four sites of the growing area in the Great-Plain region. 67 apple cultivars have been assessed. Each cultivar was represented by 3 trees, which were sampled at about 1-1.5 m height over ground, where the buds or inflorescences were picked for the purpose to assess the injury. The buds and flowers are cut longitudinally and rated visually according to the extent of browning of the organs and tissues. Susceptibility of different organs of the flower (pistils and anthers) were rated separately. According to our results, most resistant to spring frosts are the following cultivars: 'Gloster', 'Granny Smith' and appreciable tolerance is attributed in 'Gala' and 'Jonathan' with derivatives. Preliminary results that among the scab resistant cultivars, `Baujade', 'Rewena', 'Liberty', `Resi' and 'Renora' are rather frost resistant. Information, lacking hitherto, is obtained upon 'Reka' and 'Reglindis' as for their increased susceptibility.
The aim of our two-year study was to assess incidence of brown rot blossom blight and fruit rot caused by Monilinia laxa in 2003 and 2004. Assessments of incidence were made on cv. Bergeron (susceptible to brown rot) in a flatland and a hilly growing area (at Cegléd and Gönc, respectively). In both locations, plant protection was per...formed according to the integrated fruit production guidelines and small untreated plots were set up for each cultivar in both years. In 2003, when weather conditions were dry and hot, brown rot incidence was low (less than 10%) on both blossoms and fruits. Monilinia laxa did not cause significantly different blossom blight and fruit rot at the hilly (Gönc) area compared to the flatland, not even in untreated plots. However, in 2004, when spring and summer weather conditions were wet and cold, Incidence reached 95% for blossom blight and 33% for fruit rot in the untreated plots. Blossom blight incidence was 1.5-2 times higher in the flatland area compared to the hilly growing area. During the blooming period of apricot, two (at flower bud stage and at full bloom) and three (at flower bud stage, at full bloom and at petal fall) fungicide applications were necessary for the successful control at Gönc and Cegléd, respectively. The difference between the two orchards was due to the fact that blooming started one week later in the hilly region (at Gone) than in the flatland region (at Cegléd), therefore, the critical weather period coincided with blooming in the orchard in the hilly region only partially. Fruit rot incidence was similar in both regions as the amount and distribution of rainfall were similar during the fruit ripening period.
Studies were made on the bee visitation of 6 quince cultivars and on the foraging behaviour of honeybees at quince flowers for 3 consecutive years. The bee visitation was highly intense because both the plantation and its surrounding was overpopulated by honeybee colonies. Some 5.5 bee visits were counted in average at 50 opening quince flowers... in 10 minutes and some 9.7 flowers were visited of the 50 ones observed meanwhile. This equals some 7 bee visits per flower per day per in good weather. Bee visitation, however, was variable and it was greatly different in the three consecutive years with fairly favourable weather. Some cultivars tended to be more and others less visited by honeybees than the others but these differences were not consequent at each occasion. No consequent relationship between the weather and the bee visitation of quince trees could be recognised. It was concluded that .other factors were responsible for the variable nature of the bee activity at quince. Most honeybees tended to collect pollen (51.6% in average for the 3 years) and usually much less gathered for nectar only (19.9%), and the rest of them were mixed behaviour foragers gathering for both (28.5%). There were some slight differences in the foraging behaviour of honeybees at some cultivars but these differences were not always consequent in consecutive years. Also the nectar production of flowers failed to affect the bee visitation and the foraging behaviour of honeybees definitely. For the variable nature of bee visitation and bee behaviour at quince flowers, supplementary pollination is needed to achieve as high set of fruits as high is required to a good crop at quince (at least 20-25% because the flower density is low of this fruit tree species). Since the intensity of bee visitation at the flowers is the only reliable estimate of the necessity of supplementary bee pollination further research is needed to explore the relationship between the number of honeybee visits and the consequent fruit set at quince.
Foraging ecology of insect pollinators visiting carrot flowers (Daucus carota L.) was studied in relation to five environmental variables. The dwarf honeybee, Apis florea L., was the most abundant flower visitors and comprised more than 94% of the total flower visiting insects. Commencement of flight activity occurred when a m...inimum threshold of environmental variables was surpassed while the cessation was governed mainly by decline in values of light intensity and radiation. In between the commencement and cessation, the foraging population correlated significantly and positively with air temperature, light intensity, solar radiation and nectar-sugar concentration and negatively with relative humidity. Path coefficient analysis, however, revealed that direct effect of temperature was high and positive followed by light intensity and solar radiation while the direct effect of relative humidity was high and negative. The direct effect of nectar-sugar concentration was negative and negligible. Evidently, path coefficient analysis gave a more clear picture of effects than did the simple correlation analysis. Apis florea on an average visited 1.14+0.23 and 22.78+2.57 umbels and flowers/min, respectively during different hours of the day. Furthermore, the insect pollinated plots produced significantly more seeds with heavier weights than those isolated from insect visits.
The modern nursery industry requires seed sources of a high quality and regular quantity year by year. Besides the seed sources of processed cultivars (Bartlett pear, Shipley, Elberta peach) special seed orchards are planted with selected seed trees producing high quality and genetically determined seed (hybrid seed or inbred lines). Seedlings ...are still the most common commercial source of rootstocks for stone fruits (almond, apricot, peach, plum, prune and walnut). Although clonal rootstocks are spreading, usage of seedlings is still predominant at stone fruits and nuts. For successful seed production and planning of seed orchard the knowledge on floral biology, flower fertility, pollination, blossom time of trees (selected clone or cultivars) used for seed production is essential. In this field very little systematic research was carried out most of the papers were published in the second half of the 20th century. Our mini review gives an overview on the importance of flower fertility in the mating systems applied in seed orchards, and the research results on floral biology of fruit tree rootstocks propagated by seed (Prunus avium, Prunus mahaleb, Prunus armeniaca, Prunus cerasifera, Prunus insititia, Prunus amygdalus, P persica, P amygdalopersica, Pyrus pyraster, Pyrus communis and Pyrus betulifolia) over the last decades.
Intensity of bee visitation (honeybees and wild bees), foraging behaviour of honeybees and nectar parameters (nectar production, sugar concentration, sugar content in nectars) were inspected at 18 apple cultivars for three consecutive years. Honeybee visitation was calculated to be some 3.07 bee visits at a single apple flower a day but wild be...e activity was very low, only some 0.11 wild bee visits per flower per day.
The nectar production (nectar content) of apple flowers was fairly different according to the cultivars and the nectar production (nectar content) of flowers was negatively correlated with the sugar concentration in nectar. Interestingly, at the majority of the inspected 18 cultivars the nectar production has shown minor or no changes in the morning and at the afternoon. The nectar production (nectar content) of flowers clearly encouraged the total bee activity at the inspected cultivars (r = 0.54). Bees visited abundant nectars with greater sugar concentration most intensely than lees abundant nectars with smaller sugar concentration.
Nectar parameters, however, affected the activity of honeybees with different types of gathering behaviour in different way. More intense activity by pollen gatherer and mixed behaviour honeybees was observed at cultivars producing abundant nectar (pollen gatherers: r = 0.65, mixed behaviour: r = 0.79). The activity of pollen gatherer honeybees and of mixed behaviour bees, on the other hand, was negatively correlated to the sugar concentration in nectar (pollen gatherers: r = -0.51, mixed behaviour: r = -0.73). This can be explained by the fact that their behaviour was much more affected by the amount of pollen than by any nectar parameters. Accordingly, "mixed behaviour honeybees" should probably rather be called as "pollen gatherers with nectar load" instead of "nectar gatherers with pollen load", as widely used in literature. The activity of ineffective side worker nectar gatherers was greatly encouraged by the sugar concentration in nectar (p = 0.63), similarly to the pure (top) nectar gatherer honeybees (r = 0.72). There was a negative relationship between the nectar production (nectar content) of flowers and the activity of these behaviour classes (nectar gatherers: r = -0.47, side workers: r = -0.36).
Concluding the findings we can state that the activity of pollen gatherers and mixed behaviour honeybees is strongly encouraged by greater nectar production (greater nectar content) of apple flowers. Their activity, however, is mostly dependent firstly on the amount of pollen. This is the reason why the sugar concentration is in a negative relationship to the activity of pure pollen gatherers and mixed behaviour bee. On the other hand, pure nectar gatherers and side worker nectar gatherers are greatly encouraged by the sugar concentration of apple nectar the amount of nectar was not a definite influence on their activity.
Side worker honeybees occurred at each cultivar inspected, however, their ratio varied widely among cultivars. So we can draw the conclusion that, in contradiction with earlier believes, side worker nectar gathering is a general phenomenon at apple flowers. The activity of side workers depends first of all on the relative position of stamens and petals; however, low sugar concentration of nectars can probably moderate their activity but probably do not affect pollen gatherers and mixed behaviour bees.
Wild bee visitation was very low; the wild bee species observed (Osmia cornuta, Andrena flavipes, Anthophora acervorum, Bombus terrestris, Bombus lapidarius and Halictus simplex) comprised some 3.44 per cent of the total bee visitation at apple flowers only. Wild bee visitation was in a positive correlation with the nectar production (nectar amount) of flowers (r = 0,4) and with the sugar content of nectar (r = 0.46) but it was negatively correlated with the sugar concentration in nectar (r = -0,27).
Our result calls the attention to the importance of nectar parameters in the effective honeybee pollination of apple plantations. Most effective pollinating activity of honeybees can be expected in plantations with cultivars of high nectar production because this feature seem so encourage the activity of those behaviour classes (pure pollen gatherers and mixed behaviour bees) that are the most effective pollinating agents among honeybees.
Bud dormancy during winter is a critical factor in peach production in Hungary. The yield is determined basically by the survival rate of flower buds during winter frosts and by their ability to develop normal floral organs. It is important to investigate the genetic basis of slow floral development during dormancy for the purpose of breeding p...each varieties with better winter hardiness. The aim of the present research was to examine microsporogenesis in 14 peach varieties during three successive winters in a Hungarian germplasm collection and to study the effectiveness of this method in variety evaluation. There were significant differences in the dynamics of microsporogenesis both between the varieties and between the years. Of the varieties, ‘Mayfire', bred in California, possessed the quickest pollen development rate. The microsporogenesis of `Piroska', a Hungarian local variety, was the slowest. Rapid floral bud development was observed in `Aranycsillag', `Springcrest' and 'Venus'. A medium developmental rate was characteristic of `Babygold 6', Fairlane', `Michelini' and `Red June', while development was slow in 'Champion', 'Early Redhaven', `Redhaven', `Harko' and `Mariska'. Based on these results, the study of microsporogenesis represents a reliable method for the phenological description of peach varieties during dormancy. The application of this method makes it possible to identify varieties and landraces with slow flower bud development, suggesting better winter hardiness.
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 a...lso 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.