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The effect of sowing dates and seedlings' state of advancement on the yield and bud quality of globe artichoke in Hungary

Pesti, N.O., Ombódi, A., Szöcs, A., Kassai, T., Dimény, J.
Acta horticulturae 2004 no.660 pp. 423-427
artichokes, autumn, buds, crop yield, planting, seedlings, sowing date, vegetable crops, weather, Hungary
Globe artichoke is a relatively unknown vegetable crop in Hungary and its cultivation methods have not been completely worked out for the Hungarian conditions. The aim of this study was to examine the effect of date of transplanting and state of advancement of seedlings (seedlings' age at planting) on the yield and quality of two globe artichoke varieties viz., 'Green Globe' and 'Imperial Star', which are well adapted to Hungarian conditions. The seedlings of these two varieties were transplanted on two different dates - May 7 (date of sowing: March 1 and March 20) and on June 12 (date of sowing: April 24 and May 6). The total yield was significantly high for both varieties when sown on March 1 and transplanted on May 7 (Green Globe: 2 kg/m2, Imperial Star: 2.2 kg/m2). For the later dates of sowing, total yield decreased significantly. The proportion of buds in cull (unmarketable) class was the lowest for the group of plants sown on April 24 (Green Globe: 8.1 %, Imperial Star: 4.8 %). The average bud weight ranged from 160 to 180 g for the group transplanted in June, while it ranged from 130-140 g for the May 7 transplanting. The group of plants sown on April 24 also had the highest bud diameter (Green Globe: 7.8 cm, Imperial Star: 7.9 cm). Thus bud quality was better for both varieties in case of the second transplanting which could be attributed to the favourable cooler weather prevailing in early autumn coinciding with crop maturity and bud production. Independent of the dates of sowing and transplanting, Imperial Star produced better quality buds than Green Globe. According to our results, plants transplanted earlier produced higher total yields, while those transplanted later produced buds of higher quality. It is, therefore, recommended to select the early date of sowing and transplanting if the objective is to have higher crop yield at the time when the demand at the market is high whereas the later date is suggested if the aim is to produce artichoke buds of higher quality.