Isohydrodynamic behavior in deficit-irrigated Cabernet Sauvignon and Malbec and its relationship between yield and berry composition.

Shellie, K.C. and Bowen, P.A. (2014). "Isohydrodynamic behavior in deficit-irrigated Cabernet Sauvignon and Malbec and its relationship between yield and berry composition.", Irrigation Science, 32(2), pp. 87-97. doi : 10.1007/s00271-013-0416-y  Access to full text

Abstract

Cabernet Sauvignon and Malbec grapevines were irrigated at 70 or 23 % of estimated crop evapotranspiration throughout berry development over four growing seasons. Stomatal behavior was characterized by relating predawn leaf water potential and mid-morning stomatal conductance to mid-morning leaf water potential. Seasonal average weekly midday leaf water potential was lower in Cabernet Sauvignon than Malbec despite similar irrigation amounts. Both cultivars exhibited anisohydric behavior with midday leaf water potential decreasing linearly with declining predawn leaf water potential (r 2 = 0.51) and stomatal conductance (r 2 = 0.42). However, both cultivars utilized hydrodynamic mechanisms to maintain a soil-to-leaf water potential gradient of −0.62 (±0.03) MPa under standard irrigation and −0.75 (±0.04) MPa under reduced irrigation. Berry fresh weight and titratable acidity decreased, and the concentration of total anthocyanins increased in both cultivars in response to decreases in midday leaf water potential. The slope of regression equations for seasonal mean midday leaf water potential was used to estimate cultivar-specific levels of water stress associated with changes in berry weight and berry composition at fruit maturity.

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