Physiology of flowering in Coffea arabica L. : role of growth regulators and water relations Public Deposited

http://ir.library.oregonstate.edu/concern/graduate_thesis_or_dissertations/6d570050q

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  • Coffee trees growing in the Kona district of Hawaii were treated with different concentrations of either BA, GA3, or Promalin, and pruned at the time of flowering. No significant differences in the flowering and fruit ripening pattern were found. High concentrations (100 mg/1) of growth regulators decreased fruit fresh weight. Pruning yielded the lowest number of fruit and flowers, and caused branch dieback. Fruit set was between 46 and 83% for the two years studied. Flower buds from trees growing in the field that were >4 mm, but not developed to the candle stage at the time of GA₃ treatment, reached anthesis 20 days earlier than the controls. Their development was independent of rainfall, unlike the controls. Fruit from buds that had been treated at the >4 mm or the candle stage ripened more synchronously and earlier than the control. Buds smaller than 4 mm did not respond to GA₃ treatment. A threshold leaf water potential of -2.7 MPa, and flower bud water potential of about -4.0 MPa was necessary to overcome dormancy of flower buds in greenhouse grown trees. GA₃ stimulated anthesis in some plants that were stressed to leaf water potentials of -2.1 MPa. Ethylene evolution of flower buds where dormancy had been broken with water stress was low, compared to dormant flower buds. At anthesis, ethylene evolution reached highest levels. Free and conjugated IAA levels in flower buds changed markedly after the dormancy breaking stimulus. Doubling of fresh and dry weight of flower buds occurred 3 to 5 days after water stressed plants were rehydrated. It was preceded by an increase in free IAA, and a tripling in the rate of water uptake from 1 to 3 days after rehydrating water stressed plants. Throughout the development, the largest percentage of IAA was present in the conjugated form.
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