Vase life and stem bending are the main factors for evaluation of postharvest quality of cut gerbera flowers. Recently, many new gerbera cultivars with different vase life and especially stem bending have been produced. This experiment was conducted to assess the postharvest quality in 21 different important cultivars, screening and selection of cultivars have the highest vase life and the lowest stem bending as an applied and proper strategy using a basic pulse treatment (HQS 600 ppm, citric acid 300 ppm and sucrose 4%); because of very high variation in new cultivars and also cultivar dependent of stem bending in gerbera. The result showed that there are significant differences between cultivars for vase life, stem bending, ion leakage and water uptake. 'Tropic Blend', 'Cacharelle' and 'Aventura' cultivars had maximum vase life and 'Onedin', 'Ecco' and 'Entourage' had minimum vase life. Stem bending varied from 0 to 100% between different cultivars. The results led to the conclusion that screening, introducing and finally, cultivation of selected cultivars with high qualities can be used to minimize the postharvest disorders such as stem break in gerbera, and then to minimize the production costs.
Key words: Cultivar screening, Gerbera jamesonii, postharvest quality, stem bending, vase life.
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