Before Hungary joined the EU watermelon production was a key sector of the Hungarian vegetable industry. Its production area shrank by nearly 60 % since 2004, it is only 5000 ha today. Stable and reliable market failed to evolve in the last years and extreme weather events occurred more frequently. An unfavourable growing season can notably affect the production volume of the next season. Information gathered in the last years support the assumption, that suitable stocks can help eliminate the issues caused by extreme weather or short-term crop rotation. Choosing the right grafted or non-grafted transplant is not enough any more, growers also have to select stock. In fruit and vine production choosing the stock, which is the most suitable for the technology is evident and this approach should be widely adapted by watermelon growers as well. In this research we investigated the growth parameters of different watermelon stocks and their effect on the scion during the transplant production. Measurements were carried out on seven different stock-scion combinations of the scion ’Topgun F1’ hybrid. Two of the stocks were interspecific (Cucurbita maxima × Cucurbita moschata) and five stocks were Lagenaria-type (Lagenaria siceraria) stocks. We made and recorded observations of the transplants’ length (cm), diameter of the stock and scion (mm), number of leaves (piece), root length (cm), root mass (g) and shoot mass (g). We concluded that early pricking out of transplants with interspecific stocks is successful due to their hardiness and vigorous growth. The effect of the ’Shintosa camelforce F1’ interspecific stock was outstanding. Furthermore, the results confirmed the practical observation that the root system of interspecific stocks grow vertically more allowing them to take up water and nutrients from lower soil layers in poor sandy soils. From the Lagenaria group the root system of the ’DG-01 F1’ was similar to the interspecific stocks’. It can be grown even in sandy soil, however other Lagenaria-type stocks are more suitable for production in hard soils with nutrient supply because of their compact root system. This study can serve as a basis for further research in the topic that can conduce to site- and technology-specific stock selection.
The aim of our experiments was to investigate the internal quality parameters of some old melon and watermelon landraces or varieties whether they have any desirable characteristics. Measurements were carried out using 8 different types of melon (Cucumis melo L.) and 8 accessions of watermelon (Citrullus lanatus [Thumb]), which were self pollinated under greenhouse conditions. Besides the determination of dry matter content; soluble solids, titratable acidity of the fruit juices, investigation of carbohydrates, total phenol content was measured by spectrophotometer. Total antioxidant capacities were determined spectrophotometrically using the FRAP method. We found some accesions both among melon and watermelon varieties, which could be characterized by outstanding inner content.
Cotyledonary segments of five different genotypes of watermelon were used to induce organogenesis. Five different hormone combinations were applied to enhance the induction of shoot formation on the surface of the segments. The phases of organogenesis were followed with light and scanning electron microscope. Shoots were obtained after four weeks, then the shoots were transferred to hormone free medium for root induction.
This method of regeneration can be applied in transformation experiments. GUS histochemical assay was made to check the expected success of using Agrobacterium for the transformation.
Plant breeding for resistance, namely building specific resistance genes into cultivated plants to ensure resistance against certain pathogen species, is a several-decade-long practice. While looking for purposes of failures appearing during the cultivation of varieties created in this way, a plant feature that ensures non-specific reactions against effects which evoke biotic stress attracted our attention. We named this plant defense form the general defense reaction. The general defense reaction is a fundamental attribute of the plant kingdom, fulfils the role of plant immune system and manifests itself in cell enlargement and cell division. Plants with a high level general defense reaction endure abiotic stresses as well.
In studying the biochemical background of the interaction of the general defense reaction and transmethylation, we found that transmethylation has important role in warding off both biotic and abiotic stresses. According to our observations, plants possessing high level general defense system are suitable for thorough examination of the process and plant physiological role of transmethylation. Biochemical studies also strengthened our observation, which has been taken on the basis of phenotype, that the general defense system can not be ignored during future plant breeding.
Hungary is a country with excellent ecological potentials and with rich traditions in vegetable production. The total vegetable production area comprises about 100 000 ha and annual production amounts to 1.4-1.8 million tons, 75-80% comes from fields and the rest from forcing. Approximately 40 species are produced, but only 20 of them play a dominant role. The most important ones arc: sweet corn, peas, peppers, watermelon, onions, tomatoes, gherkin, carrots, beans, white cabbage.
40-45% of the total production is processed, 20-30% sold on the fresh market and 30% exported.
Vegetable production is based on rural farms of 1-5 ha average acreage. It provides living for about 70-100 000 families. The low number of producers' organisations is a major setback.
Profitability of vegetable production is rather low. Production costs are high, wholesale prices are depressed.
Vegetables are produced for the industry by contract. Fresh vegetables are sold through local markets (15-20%), the wholesale market (decreasing importance) and direct marketing (35-40%).
Against the self-sufficiency of the country there is a seasonal import of vegetables mainly in winter and early springtime.
Hungarian legal regulations are harmonized with the EU directives, EU standards are accepted and applied, traditionally good market connections and cooperation with several EU countries enable the country to be a partner of EU vegetable growers.