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Exploring within-tree architectural development of two apple tree cultivars over 6 years.

Abstract : The present study addresses the prediction of apple tree development, taking into account both the number and within-tree position of tree components. The architectural development of two trees per scion cultivar, 'Fuji' and 'Braeburn', was studied by describing all shoots over 6 years. Flowering and fruiting were observed over 3 years. The description included different scales [entire trees, axes, growth units (GUs) and metamers], and the analysis compared all axes of the trees as a function of their branching order and age. Three main aspects of vegetative development were investigated: the quantity of primary growth; the number and nature of developing axillary shoots; and meristem death. Results conÆrm the existence of within-tree morphological gradients, and show that the decrease in growth was comparable in magnitude for all axes and GUs, irrespective of their position. This decrease results from a reduction in the number of metamers per GU, which was modelled by an exponential function. The decrease in growth involved changes in the number and nature of the axillary shoots, which could be described by simple functions. The probability of spur death was constant over the years but differed according to cultivar and type of bearing shoot. The within-tree probability of Øowering and fruiting was predictable for 'Braeburn' because axes, regardless of their position and type, had a high probability of Øowering and a low probability of fruit set which led to a regular bearing habit. In contrast, 'Fuji' had an alternating bearing behaviour that was more complex to predict. This appeared to result from a synchronized increase in the probability that all GUs at tree scale are Øoral, combined with a high probability of fruit set. The consequences of these results for both yield prediction and architectural simulations are discussed.
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Contributor : Christophe Godin Connect in order to contact the contributor
Submitted on : Tuesday, May 28, 2013 - 4:47:20 PM
Last modification on : Monday, October 11, 2021 - 1:22:11 PM

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Evelyne Costes, Hervé Sinoquet, J.J. Kelner, Christophe Godin. Exploring within-tree architectural development of two apple tree cultivars over 6 years.. Annals of Botany, Oxford University Press (OUP), 2003, 91, pp.91-104. ⟨10.1093/aob/mcg010⟩. ⟨hal-00826993⟩



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