The work was carried out in two successive seasons (2005 and 2006) to investigate the storability of four apple cultivars viz. Golden Delicious, Starking Delicious, Star Cremson and Gala, which were grown under El Jabal El Akhdaer conditions, in Libya. Fruits were harvested and stored at 85-90% relative humidity and 0ºC for 0, 30, 60, 90, 120, 150 and 180 days. The obtained results exhibited the significant differences between the tested cultivars in the studied parameters comprising physiological and anatomical parameters. Star Cremson cv. had a potentially high fruits storability trend, as they showed less fruit weight loss, while cv. Gala fruits had the highest level of weight loss. On the other hand, cv. Golden Delicious gave the highest values of fruit firmness, while the lowest values were obtained in fruits of cvs. Starking Delicious and Star Cremson. Fruit weight loss percent increased, while other studied parameters decreased gradually by extending storage period. Anatomical data demonstrated that fruit surface of cvs. Gala and Star Cremson were smooth, while undulate and ripples surfaces were obtained in cvs. Starking Delicious and Golden Delicious, respectively. Gala fruits had the thick cuticle layer compared to the other cultivars. Crushed parenchymatous cells (cpc) were found in storage tissue in Starking Delicious and Golden Delicious. It may be concluded that obtained results indicated a great variability among cultivars. All studied parameters of four apple cultivars reduced during cold-storage periods. The highest fruit storability was achieved in cv. Star Cremson. This study gives useful information to use the suitable cultivar for reducing the quality losses which result from postharvest diseases.
Key words: Apple cultivars, cold-storage, cuticle, crushed parenchymatous cells, storability.
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