Sap flow rate measurements were carried out during two consecutive ('on' and 'off') years in an apple orchard cv. 'Florina' M.26 to analyse the effects of various crop load on tree water use. Sap flow rate was measured by thermal dissipation method in trunks of nine trees from June to the harvest. Crop load was between 0.2-9.0 fruits • cm
Total leaf area was estimated by leaf counting or using shoot girth and leaf area relationship. In both years, fruit growth rate was determined by measuring diameter of 280 marked fruits with 7 days frequency. Fruit volume calculated as a function of fruit diameter based on a previously determined relationship.
Total leaf area of trees ranged from 4.4 to 19.5 m2 and it was closely related to trunk cross section area. At high crop load the fruit growth rate peaked in August with 0.51.tree-l.day-1 and the leaf area specific total fruit volume reached 61 m2 before the harvest.
There was a linear relationship between total leaf area and daily water use, while the leaf area specific water use was influenced by crop load rate. The relationship was described by piecewise linear regression with the breakpoint at crop load rate of 12 fruits•m2 of leaf area. At low crop load the slope of the fitted regression line was less than at high crop load rate.
Despite of its importance there is no exact information on water use of new scion/rootstock composite trees, which would be needed to optimized irrigation. Our research purpose is to define exact water-demand of different rootstock/scion composite trees, calculating seasonal weather changes and by using the results decrease irrigation costs. Th...e investigations are carried out in Soroksár, at the Experimental Farm of Corvinus University of Budapest in May 2008. From among the investigated trees two are budded onto Prunus mahuleb `Érdi V' seedlings, two on "Korponay' seedlings. The sapflow measurements are carried out using Dynamax Flow 32 equipment with Dynagage trunk sensors. The first daily maximum of sapflow was around 10:00 a.m. (2.5 kghour I), the second maximum was always between 14:00-15:00 p.m. (2 kgday- I). Comparing to the very intensive morning water uptake by 20:00 p.m. the water flow slowly reached the minimal level. Significant differences can be seen on rootstocks: trees on `Korponay' rootstock always showed more intensive sapflow and a higher morning peak than trees on `Árdi V'. But later during the day they have the same run.Based on our results the water quantity transpired only by the trees reached in May 86-104 mm, while the precipitation was only 42.4 mm. This means a 40-60 mm deficit in the orchard, which should have been supplied by irrigation despite of the satisfying horticultural performance of the orchard. In the first half of the month beside the steady vapor pressure deficit the shoot and leaf surface growth could cause the increased sapflow.
One of the biggest professional challenges of the following years is to develop the water resource management for apple trees. In order to know the water consumption of plants, some traditional and modern methods could useful. In our research the sap flow measurement of the plants were carried out. We have analyzed the transpiration properties...of the trees in the investigation period. In order to compare the transpiration of the trees, the leaf areas were scanned and evaluated. Beside these measurements, soil water properties were determined by tensiometers, thus it makes possible to observe the soil-plant-atmosphere system.
Present paper describes an investigation concerning seasonal water use and foliage area development of apple trees. Sap flow velocity was measured in the trunks of five years old apple trees cv. `Florina'/M.26 by a thermal dissipation (Granier) method from 20th of May to the end of September in 1998. The development of foliage area was estimate...d by a method including leaf area measurements, recording of leaves and shoot length. The foliage area reached to 70% of the maximum yearly value at beginning of June. The remaining 30% developed to the end of August. The leaf area specific water use was considerable higher in June and July, than in second part of summer. The trends of ET-FAO and water use curves differed mostly in the late season: the ET-FAO curve falls quite in September compared to August, whereas the value of water use was a similar as in August. This insensitivity of ET-FAO in this period may be a great disadvantage while using the Penman-Monteith equation in irrigation scheduling of apple.