Evaluation of orange trees budded on several rootstocks and planted at high density on flatwoods soil

Mongi Zekri

Abstract


The performance of 'Valencia' orange trees on Swingle citrumelo (Swi), Cleopatra mandarin (Cleo), Milam lemon (Mil), and Volkamer lemon (Volk) rootstocks was evaluated on the flatwoods soil of southwest Florida. Leaf mineral concentration, growth, fruit production and quality were measured four and seven years after planting in a closely-spaced setting (19 ft by 9 ft) in a commercial grove. Compared to Florida citrus leaf standards, leaf mineral concentration values were within the optimum to the high range. Yield efficiency expressed as lb solids/yard of canopy and juice quality in terms of juice content, Brix, and lb solids/box increased with tree age. Tree and fruit size were the highest for Volk and the lowest for Cleo. Fruit yield was the highest for Volk. However, yield expressed in lb solids/acre was not significantly different between Volk and Swi due to the higher solids/box for Swi. Yield efficiency was also higher for Swi than for Volk. Juice content and soluble solids in the fruit were higher for Swi and Cleo than for both lemon rootstocks. Financial analysis showed that at high density planting, trees on Swi were the most profitable.

Keywords


citrus; financial analysis; fruit quality; fruit yield; growth; juice color; mineral concentration

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Proc. Fla. State Hort. Soc.     ISSN 0886-7283