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Characterization of the new cultivar 'ERVI' as a function of mechanical harvesting

Gatti, M., Zamboni, M., Merli, M.C., Civardi, S., Poni, S.
Acta horticulturae 2013 no.978 pp. 229-236
anthocyanins, biodiversity, climate change, crossing, cultivars, grapes, hills, mechanical harvesting, mechanization, pH, parents, phenols, pruning, ripening, shoots, soluble solids, titratable acidity, vines, vineyards, viticulture
Selection of new grape cultivars by intraspecific crossing increases biodiversity as well as improves some parents’ characteristics. However, their success is still unclear. It seems to depend upon how well they respond to different challenges and demands of the modern viticulture, such as their adaptability to climate change and vineyard mechanization. This research aims to characterize vine performance and suitability to mechanical harvesting of cultivar ‘Ervi’ (V. vinifera L.), an Italian crossbreed between ‘Barbera’ and ‘Croatina’. The trial was performed between 2008 and 2010 on the Piacenza hills using Guyot trained vines. Cluster number and yield per vine were recorded at harvest. Subsequently, shoot fertility, cluster and berry weight were calculated accordingly. Soluble solids, pH and must titratable acidity were analyzed as well as total anthocyanins and phenols grape content. A pool of 891 berries was randomly picked and their respective detachment force was measured by a dynamometer. ‘Ervi’ showed more constant yield than its parents and shoot fertility higher than ‘Croatina’ suggesting that short spur pruning is feasible. Berry weight in ‘Ervi’ was also lower than in ‘Barbera’. Ripening was earlier than both parents. The adaptability of ‘Ervi’ to the mechanical harvesting is similar to ‘Barbera’ and better than ‘Croatina’. The BDF is cultivar-dependent and is an important parameter for mechanical harvesting. Its application as a maturity index is still premature.