Arbutus unedo L. enjoys a growing interest in the world as a result of common uses in the industrial, pharmaceutical and chemical fields. The bulk material comes from the natural populations because of the lack of selection and culture of this fruit. Natural populations are severely damaged due to deforestation, over-collecting and new construction on the coasts, so that the future of the species is in a danger. In this work, the pomological and chemical characteristics of 37 A. unedo L. types were evaluated in Samanli mountain locations between the years 2008 to 2010. The present research is very important because no studies had been made about A. unedo L. in this region before this one. The data were evaluated using the weighed-ranked method, with the highest score occurring for type UL1 (285 total scores). The fruit weights, soluble solid contents and titratable acid values ranged from 1.13 to 6.46 g; from 16.50 to 31.68% and from 0.48 to 1.24%, respectively. According to the results, fruit firmness of the types was between 0.79 and 4.32 N. In addition, a taste group rated the qualitative characteristics of the fruit. Based on the result of this evaluation, five types were selected as being superior. The taste and appearance of these types are very good while their stoniness is low or medium. Fruit number per cluster ranged from 2.68 to 3.54 for these superior types.
Key words: Selection, pomology, chemical properties, weighed-ranked method, natural populations.
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