TERRAPUB AGri-Bioscience Monographs (AGBM)

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Vol. 8 (No. 1), pp. 1-22, 2018 doi: 10.5047/agbm.2018.00801.0001

Postharvest Characteristics of Cut Flowers and Techniques for Extending Vase Life, with a Focus on Eustoma, Gentiana and Dahlia

Hiroko Shimizu-Yumoto

Institute of Vegetable and Floriculture Science,
National Agriculture and Food Research Organization (NARO),
2-1 Fujimoto, Tsukuba 305-0852, Japan
e-mail: hirokosh@affrc.go.jp

(Received on February 8, 2016; Accepted on November 9, 2016; Online published on December 28, 2018)

Abstract: Long vase life of cut flowers is valued highly by consumers. In addition, a sales system guaranteeing the vase life of cut flowers is becoming common among retailers and volume sellers. Therefore, postharvest techniques to extend the vase life have been increasingly required over decades. This review summarizes the factors affecting vase life and describes effective treatments for extending vase life, mainly for Eustoma (Eustoma grandiflorum), gentian (Gentiana) and dahlia (Dahlia) flowers. In cut Eustoma flowers, several treatments using sugars and/or ethylene inhibitors to improve vase life have been developed. Factors shortening the vase life due to pollination have also been clarified. Gentiana scabra is highly sensitive to ethylene, but gentians show species variation of sensitivity to ethylene. Vase life of G. scabra and its hybrids is extended by treatment with ethylene inhibitors. A spray treatment with a cytokinin, 6-benzylaminopurine (BA), improves the vase life of cut dahlia flowers, although their vase life is still short. These results should contribute to supplying consumers with cut flowers that keep their quality for long periods.

Keywords: dahlia, ethylene, Eustoma grandiflorum, gentian, phytohormone, pollination, sugars

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