Search and Access Archived Conference Presentations

The 2011 ASHS Annual Conference

The Mechanisms of Plant Stress Mitigation by Kaolin-Based Particle Films and Its Applications In Horticultural and Agricultural Crops

Wednesday, September 28, 2011: 10:40 AM
Monarchy Ballroom
David Michael Glenn, USDA Appalachian Fruit Research Station, Shepherdstown, WV
Kaolin-based particle films have utility in reducing insect, heat, light, and uv stress in plants due to the reflective nature of the particles. Particle films with a residue density of 1 to 3 g per square meter have been evaluated in a range of crops and agricultural environments. The particle film is a general insect repellant due to the change in the plant’s leaf/fruit texture but also because it changes the reflected light signature of the plant causing insect avoidance for many pests. The alteration of reflected light is due to the ability of the particle film to reflect IR, PAR, and UV radiation. Reflection of IR can reduce canopy temperature as much as 5 °C, which will reduce potential transpiration. The reduction of PAR by the film at the leaf level is compensated in varying degrees by diffusion of PAR into the interior of the canopy. Whole canopy photosynthesis can be increased by the combination of reduced canopy temperature and increased interior canopy light. The reflection of UV is a key element in reducing solar injury or sunburn in fruit. In apple, reducing both PAR and UV are effective means of reducing sunburn damage. The use of a reflective particle film is effective in mitigating environmental stress and has significant economic benefits in agricultural crops.