Postharvest handling of Tuberose (polianthes tuberosa L.) cut flowers
Watako, A O
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A range of postharvest treatments were applied to tuberose (Polianthes tuberosa L.) cut flowers in an effort to improve flower bud opening, vase life, and to reduce floret senescence. Vase life of individual flowers of cut tuberose inflorescence was 4-6 days after opening. Generally, harvesting tuberose inflorescence with several florets open improved their percent opening and vase life. A vase solution containing 2% sucrose and 1% sodium hypochlorite (NaOcl) continuously improved display life (percent floret opening and vase life). Substantial uptake of vase solution occurred in the first 1-2 days and was accompanied by increased fresh weight of tubcrose stems, but that decreased later over the vase life of inflorescence. That increase in fresh weight was significantly influenced. by sucrose concentration, 2% giving the highest qbsorption rate. Pulsing cut flowers with 20% sucrose for 24 hours resulted with over 80% floret opening and prolonged vase life of 18.6 days. Immersing stems of tuberose inflorescence in vase solution containing silver thiosulphate (STS) complex doubled their vase life from 10 to more than 23 days with over 90% floret opening. The effect was achieved by pulsing flower stems with vase solution containing 2.0 roM Ag+ with a pulse as short as 10 minutes. The removal of a number of the first opening mature florets or a few top immature non-opened flower buds increased the longevity and percent opening of the remaining florets. Removal of 4 mature and opened lower florets or 5 immature non-opened flower buds significantly improved vase life and percent opening of the remaining florets. Removal of immature non-opened flower buds resulted in full development of the remaining florets. However, with the inclusion of 2% sucrose in vase solution, removal of 3 opened florets or immature flower buds in each case also gave better results. Recutting of flower stems after a period of 48 hours also improved the display vase life.