Optimal Postharvest Handling Procedures of Eremurus ‘Line Dance' and ‘Tap Dance'

Monday, July 22, 2013
Desert Ballroom: Salons 7-8 (Desert Springs J.W Marriott Resort )
Iftikhar Ahmad , Horticultural Science, North Carolina State University, Raleigh, NC
John M. Dole , Horticultural Science, North Carolina State University, Raleigh, NC
Flavia Schiappacasse , Universidad de Talca, Talca, Chile
Muhammad Saleem , University of Agriculture, Faisalabad, Pakistan
Eremurus is a striking specialty cut flower with high commercial potential, but postharvest handling procedures need to be optimized for longest vase life. Cut stems of ‘Line Dance’ and ‘Tap Dance’ eremurus were evaluated for optimal harvest stage, harvest procedures, ethylene sensitivity and effects of anti-ethylene agents, and storage methods and duration. Also, the effects of commercial hydrators, hydrators along with holding preservatives, or continuous use of floral foam saturated with or without commercial preservatives were investigated. Stems of both cultivars harvested when no floret opened, had longer vase life than stems harvested with three or more florets open at harvest. Harvest procedures, exogenous ethylene and anti-ethylene agents had no significant effect on eremurus longevity. Stems of both cultivars stored for one week had similar vase life as of unstored stems irrespective of storage methods. Storage longer than one week greatly shortened the vase life of both cultivars. Stems of ‘Tap Dance’ eremurus hydrated in tap water with silver thiosulfate or Floralife Hydraflor 100 for 4 hours had longer vase life than stems hydrated with just tap water, 1-methylcyclopropene (1-MCP), or Chrysal Professional 1, while stems of ‘Line Dance’ were unaffected by commercial hydrators. Use of both hydrator and holding preservatives did not result in significant differences in vase life for both cultivars, while pulsing with 5% or 10% sucrose supplemented with the antimicrobial agent, Kathon at 7 mg·L-1, for 24 hours extended vase life by 1.2 or 2.2 for ‘Line Dance’ and 1.4 or 1.9 days for ‘Tap Dance’ stems, respectively, compared with tap water. Stems of ‘Line Dance’ kept continuously in commercial preservatives had longest vase life compared with tap water and use of floral foam reduced vase life. However, stems of ‘Tap Dance’ kept continuously in floral foam saturated with tap water or just Floralife Clear Professional flower food had longest vase life.
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