Project description:Organic apple cider vinegar is produced from apples that go through very restricted treatment in orchard. During the first stage of the process, the sugars from apples are fermented by yeasts to cider. The produced ethanol is used as a substrate by acetic acid bacteria in a second separated bioprocess. In both, the organic and conventional apple cider vinegars the ethanol oxidation to acetic acid is initiated by native microbiota that survived alcohol fermentation. We compared the cultivable acetic acid bacterial microbiota in the production of organic and conventional apple cider vinegars from a smoothly running oxidation cycle of a submerged industrial process. In this way we isolated and characterized 96 bacteria from organic and 72 bacteria from conventional apple cider vinegar. Using the restriction analysis of the PCR-amplified 16S-23S rRNA gene ITS regions, we identified four different HaeIII and five different HpaII restriction profiles for bacterial isolates from organic apple cider vinegar. Each type of restriction profile was further analyzed by sequence analysis of the 16S-23S rRNA gene ITS regions, resulting in identification of the following species: Acetobacter pasteurianus (71.90%), Acetobacter ghanensis (12.50%), Komagataeibacter oboediens (9.35%) and Komagataeibacter saccharivorans (6.25%). Using the same analytical approach in conventional apple cider vinegar, we identified only two different HaeIII and two different HpaII restriction profiles of the 16S?23S rRNA gene ITS regions, which belong to the species Acetobacter pasteurianus (66.70%) and Komagataeibacter oboediens (33.30%). Yeasts that are able to resist 30 g/L of acetic acid were isolated from the acetic acid production phase and further identified by sequence analysis of the ITS1-5.8S rDNA?ITS2 region as Candida ethanolica, Pichia membranifaciens and Saccharomycodes ludwigii. This study has shown for the first time that the bacterial microbiota for the industrial production of organic apple cider vinegar is clearly more heterogeneous than the bacterial microbiota for the industrial production of conventional apple cider vinegar. Further chemical analysis should reveal if a difference in microbiota composition influences the quality of different types of apple cider vinegar.
Project description:Plant resistance inducers, also called elicitors, could be useful to reduce the use of pesticides. However, their performance in controlling diseases in the field remains unsatisfactory due to lack of specific knowledge of how they can integrate crop protection practices. In this work, we focused on apple crop and acibenzolar-S-methyl (ASM), a well-known SAR (systemic acquired resistance) inducer of numerous plant species. We provide a protocol for orchard-effective control of apple scab due to the ascomycete fungus Venturia inaequalis, by applying ASM in combination with a light integrated pest management program. Besides we pave the way for future optimization levers by demonstrating in controlled conditions (i) the high influence of apple genotypes, (ii) the ability of ASM to prime defenses in newly formed leaves, (iii) the positive effect of repeated elicitor applications, (iv) the additive effect of a thinning fruit agent.
Project description:Apple replant disease (ARD) is an important problem in the production of apple. The phenolic acid is one of the causes of ARD. How phenolic acid affects the ARD was not well known. In this study, we analyzed the type, concentration and annual dynamic variation of phenolic acid in soil from three replanted apple orchards using an accelerated solvent extraction system with high performance liquid chromatography (ASE-HPLC). We found that the type and concentration of phenolic acid were significantly differed among different seasons, different sampling positions and different soil layers. Major types of phenolic acid in three replanted apple orchards were phlorizin, benzoic acid and vanillic aldehyde. The concentration of phenolic acid was highest in the soil of the previous tree holes and it was increased from the spring to autumn. Moreover, phenolic acid was primarily distributed in 30-60 cm soil layer in the autumn, while it was most abundant in 0-30 cm soil layer in the spring. Our results suggest that phlorizin, benzoic acid and vanillic aldehyde may be the key phenolic acid that brought about ARD in the replanted apple orchard.
Project description:Studies in plant-microbiome currently use diverse protocols, making their comparison difficult and biased. Research in human microbiome have faced similar challenges, but the scientific community proposed various recommendations which could also be applied to phytobiome studies. Here, we addressed the isolation of plant microbiota through apple carposphere and lettuce root microbiome. We demonstrated that the fraction of the culturable epiphytic microbiota harvested by a single wash might only represent one-third of the residing microbiota harvested after four successive washes. In addition, we observed important variability between the efficiency of washing protocols (up to 1.6-fold difference for apple and 1.9 for lettuce). QIIME2 analysis of 16S rRNA gene, showed a significant difference of the alpha and beta diversity between protocols in both cases. The abundance of 76 taxa was significantly different between protocols used for apple. In both cases, differences between protocols disappeared when sequences of the four washes were pooled. Hence, pooling the four successive washes increased the alpha diversity for apple in comparison to a single wash. These results underline the interest of repeated washing to leverage abundance of microbial cells harvested from plant epiphytic microbiota whatever the washing protocols, thus minimizing bias.
Project description:The levels and distribution of 9 trace elements in apples from two orchards in north-east (NE) Romania were measured by means of Atomic Absorption Spectroscopy (AAS) on 42 samples of 9 different apple varieties, with average content ranges of 0.909-4.458 mg·kg-1 Zn, 0.055-0.409 mg·kg-1 Cu, 0.700-2.476 mg·kg-1 Fe, 0.328-0.695 mg·kg-1 Mn, 0.054-0.257 mg·kg-1 Ni, 0.005-0.101 mg·kg-1 Cr, 0.027-0.420 mg·kg-1 Co, 0.413-1.149 mg·kg-1 Pb, and 0.025-0.127 mg·kg-1 Cd. For some apple varieties, Pb contents are 2 times higher than the maximum contents allowed according to national standards, Cd contents are 6 times higher, and in some cases Zn contents also exceed the national threshold, showing preferential accumulation on specific apple varieties. Whilst some research has been carried out on trace element distribution in apples, this study assessed the areal distribution of toxic trace elements in connection to the adjacent roads. The first apple orchard is located near a county road, with reduced car traffic, while the second orchard shares its southern limit with a high-volume traffic road (E583). The results point towards a proportional increase of Pb and, to some extent, of Cd in the samples close to the E583 road in contrast with the other orchard, where no such observation derived. Along the areal distribution of the selected elements, the preferential accumulation of dietary recommended trace elements in different apple varieties was assessed. In matters of daily nutrients content in trace elements, the best sources of Fe, Cu, and Zn in terms of apple varieties are Golden Delicious, Jonathan, and Kaltherer Böhmer.
Project description:Background:Inclusion of forage into the orchard is of great help in promoting the use efficiency of resources, while shading from trees restricts forage growth and production in the Loess Plateau of China. This study was aimed to investigate how tree shading affected leaf trait, photosynthetic gas exchange and chlorophyll feature of forages under the tree in the orchard-forage system. Methods:The shading treatments were set as partially cutting branches (reduced shading), normal fruit tree shading (normal shading) and normal tree shading plus sun-shading net (enhanced shading) in an apple orchard. Leaf trait, photosynthesis, chlorophyll component and fluorescence related parameters were measured with lucerne (Medicago sativa), white clover (Trifolium repens) and cocksfoot (Dactylis glomerata) which were sown under apple trees. Results:Shading imposed significant impacts on the growth and leaf photosynthetic characteristics, while there were differences among species. Enhanced shading decreased leaf thickness, leaf dry matter content (LDMC) and leaf mass per unit area (LMA). Biomass accumulation decreased with enhanced shading in cocksfoot, but did not change in white clover and lucerne which had much lower biomass accumulation than cocksfoot. Enhanced shading reduced net photosynthetic rate (Pn) of white clover and lucerne, but rarely affected cocksfoot, while it decreased instantaneous water use efficiency (WUEi) of cocksfoot but had few effects on the other forages. Enhanced shading reduced leaf dark respiration rate (Rd), light compensation point (LCP) and maximum assimilation rate. The Rd and LCP of cocksfoot were much lower than those of white clover and lucerne. Chlorophyll contents and chlorophyll a/b changed little with shading. Cocksfoot had the highest contents but lowest ratio. Maximum photochemical rate of photosystem II increased and non-photochemical quenching decreased with enhanced shading in cocksfoot, while did not change in the other forages. Discussion:Leaf trait, photosynthetic gas exchange and chlorophyll feature were variously affected by species, shading and their interaction. Cocksfoot was more efficient than the other two forages in use of weakened light and more tolerant to tree shading. In the apple orchard, we recommend that reducing the density of apple tree or partially cutting branches together with selecting some shading-tolerant forages, i.e., cocksfoot, would be a practical option for the orchard-forage system in the Loess Plateau of China.
Project description:The data presented in this article relates to the research article entitled "Nitrous oxide emissions from soils under traditional cropland and apple orchard in the semi-arid Loess Plateau of China" (https://doi.org/10.1016/j.dib.2016.08.027) (Pang et al., 2019). The dataset includes soil N2O emissions for two land use types (wheat field and apple orchard) in the semi-arid Loess Plateau and related environmental factors, such as soil temperature and soil moisture. In addition, the estimated annual average and seasonal cumulative emissions of N2O are presented here. Nitrous oxide emissions were measured by static, closed chamber methods. The data provides evidence for the difference in N2O emissions among two dominant land uses on the Loess Plateau of China.
Project description:A large literature has documented the effects of weather on agricultural yields. However, weather not only impacts the quantity produced, but also the quality of the product. Due to data limitations, the quality effects have primarily been studied using lab experiments for specific attributes, and the financial implications for farmers of a quality effect are less clear. Using a unique longitudinal micro-level data set of Swiss apple orchards that include information on both the quantity produced as well as the quality, we show that the latter can have an even larger effect on farm revenue. Ignoring the quality of the harvested product substantially biases the impact of weather extremes on agricultural income and the potential effects of climate change. Our quality measure is the orchard-year specific price shock. If an orchard gets a lower price for its specific apple variety compared to previous years and compared to other orchards in the same year, we observe the market's valuation of its inferior quality accounting for overall price movements (other orchards growing same variety that year) as well as orchard specific factors (orchard fixed effects). We find that spring frost events induce farm gate price drops and thus revenue reductions of up to 2.05% per hour of exposure.
Project description:Birds active in apple orchards in south-eastern Australia can contribute positively (e.g., control crop pests) or negatively (e.g., crop damage) to crop yields. Our study is the first to identify net outcomes of these activities, using six apple orchards, varying in management intensity, in south-eastern Australia as a study system. We also conducted a predation experiment using real and artificial codling moth (Cydia pomonella) larvae (a major pest in apple crops). We found that: (1) excluding birds from branches of apple trees resulted in an average of 12.8% more apples damaged by insects; (2) bird damage to apples was low (1.9% of apples); and (3) when trading off the potential benefits (biological control) with costs (bird damage to apples), birds provided an overall net benefit to orchard growers. We found that predation of real codling moth larvae was higher than for plasticine larvae, suggesting that plasticine prey models are not useful for inferring actual predation levels. Our study shows how complex ecological interactions between birds and invertebrates affect crop yield in apples, and provides practical strategies for improving the sustainability of orchard systems.
Project description:Streptomycin is commonly used to control fire blight disease on apple trees. Although the practice has incited controversy, little is known about its nontarget effects in the environment. We investigated the impact of aerial application of streptomycin on nontarget bacterial communities in soil beneath streptomycin-treated and untreated trees in a commercial apple orchard. Soil samples were collected in two consecutive years at 4 or 10 days before spraying streptomycin and 8 or 9 days after the final spray. Three sources of microbial DNA were profiled using tag-pyrosequencing of 16S rRNA genes: uncultured bacteria from the soil (culture independent) and bacteria cultured on unamended or streptomycin-amended (15 ?g/ml) media. Multivariate tests for differences in community structure, Shannon diversity, and Pielou's evenness test results showed no evidence of community response to streptomycin. The results indicate that use of streptomycin for disease management has minimal, if any, immediate effect on apple orchard soil bacterial communities. This study contributes to the profile of an agroecosystem in which antibiotic use for disease prevention appears to have minimal consequences for nontarget bacteria.