Response of fresh-market tomato cultivars to soil-applied biostimulant

Alexander A. Csizinszky

Abstract


Two tomato (Lycopersicon esculentum Mill.) cvs., Equinox and Sunbeam, were grown in fall-winter (September- January) 1999-2000 to evaluate the effect of 'Magnet' (DXL-510) soil-applied beta protein biostimulant on yield and nutrient uptake. Soil in the experimental area was an Eau Gallie fine sand and the production system was the full-bed polyethylene mulch with micro-(drip-) irrigation. 'Magnet' was injected at 4.67 L*ha[sup-] (ha= 6759 m of mulched bed) through the microirrigation tubing 14 days after planting and again, at 2.34 L·ha[sup-], 21 days after the first application. In the control plots, the plants were treated with water only. The crop received (in kg·ha[sup-]) 98N, 42P, and 163K from pre-plant dry and 170N and 283K from injected liquid fertilizers. Fruits were harvested six times during the season. 'Magnet' biostimulant increased fruit size and marketable yields of both cultivars in early (first two) harvests (P[less than or equal to] 0.05). Seasonal total fruit yields were similar between biostimulant and control treatments. Biostimulant treatment had little or no effect on plant height, fruit firmness, and elemental concentrations in shoots, fruits, and on the residual concentrations of macro- and microelements in the soil.

Keywords


lycopersicon esculentum; beta-protein polymer; microirrigation; early yield; fruit size

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