African Journal of
Agricultural Research

  • Abbreviation: Afr. J. Agric. Res.
  • Language: English
  • ISSN: 1991-637X
  • DOI: 10.5897/AJAR
  • Start Year: 2006
  • Published Articles: 6576

Full Length Research Paper

Planting density and number of stems for ecological crop determinate growth tomato

Denise de Souza Martins
  • Denise de Souza Martins
  • Programa de Pós-graduação em Produção Agrícola Familiar - UFPel, P. O. Box 354, ZIP Code 96010-900 Pelotas, RS, Brazil.
  • Google Scholar
Maristela Watthier
  • Maristela Watthier
  • Departamento de Fitotecnia - UFV, Campus Universitário, ZIP Code 36570 900, Viçosa, MG, Brasil.
  • Google Scholar
Jose Ernani Schwengber
  • Jose Ernani Schwengber
  • Embrapa Clima Temperado, Estação Experimental Cascata, BR 392, Km 78, P. O. Box 403, ZIP Code 96010-971, Pelotas, RS, Brazil.
  • Google Scholar
Diego Rosa da Silva
  • Diego Rosa da Silva
  • Embrapa Clima Temperado, Estação Experimental Cascata, BR 392, Km 78, P. O. Box 403, ZIP Code 96010-971, Pelotas, RS, Brazil.
  • Google Scholar
Ryan Noremberg Schubert
  • Ryan Noremberg Schubert
  • Embrapa Clima Temperado, Estação Experimental Cascata, BR 392, Km 78, P. O. Box 403, ZIP Code 96010-971, Pelotas, RS, Brazil.
  • Google Scholar
Roberta Marins Nogueira Peil
  • Roberta Marins Nogueira Peil
  • Departamento de Fitotecnia, Faculdade de Agronomia Eliseu Maciel - UFPel, P. O. Box 354, ZIP Code 96010-900, Pelotas, RS, Brazil.
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  •  Received: 06 February 2018
  •  Accepted: 23 February 2018
  •  Published: 22 March 2018

Abstract

Tomato growers adopting an ecologically based system have opted for determinate growth varieties due to their ease of staking and sprouting, and due to the fact that they have a shorter cycle, which reduces phytosanitary problems that usually occur towards the end of the growing season. This study aimed to evaluate yield components and fruit quality of ‘Floradade’ determinate growth tomato in an ecologically based production system with regard to plant density and number of stems per plant in two growing seasons, spring-summer (SS) and summer-fall (SF). Two experiments were conducted in Pelotas in the years 2010/2011 under open field conditions. Plants were trained with two or four stems and four plant densities were evaluated: 2.0; 2.5; 3.0 and 3.6 plants m-2 in SS, and 1.5; 2.0; 2.5 and 3.0 plants m-2 in SF. The fruit number, fruit average weight, fruit yield, ascorbic acid content, total soluble solids and fruit pH were evaluated. The average fruit yield obtained in SF was on average 80% lower than that in SS. The increase of plant density and number of stems per plant led to an increase in fruit number and fruit yield in the two crop seasons. There was an increase in total soluble solids and reduction in the ascorbic acid content of the fruit. Two stems per plant and plant density of 3.0 plants m-2 are recommended for the ‘Floradade’ tomato crop under an ecological production system and SS crop conditions.
 
Key words: Solanum lycopersicum, organic production, crop management, crop season.