Original scientific paper
IMPROVING POSTHARVEST VASE-LIFE AND QUALITY OF CUT GERBERA FLOWERS USING NATURAL AND CHEMICAL PRESERVATIVES
2015, 16 (2) p. 199-211
Gerbera is one of ten popular cut flowers in the world which occupies the forth place according to the global trends in floriculture. Hence, this study aimed to investigate the effects of chemical, hormonal and essential oil substances in preservative solutions to improve its postharvest qualitative characteristics. Two pulse treatments including distilled water (pulse1) and 4% CaCl2 + 3% sucrose (pulse2) for 24 hour were applied before long-time treatments. Long-time treatments were comprised of (1) Hormonal treatments: 0, 25, 30 mg*l-1 Gibberellic acid, 0, 150, 250 mg*l-1 Benzyl adenine and 0, 100, 200 mg*l-1 5-Sulfosalicylic acid (2) Chemical treatments: 0, 0.4, 0.8 mM Silver thiosulphate, 0, 5, 10 mg*l-1 Nano-silver particles, 0, 4, 6 mM Aminooxy acetic acid and 0, 200 and 400 mg*l-1 8-hydroxyquinoline sulphate (3) Essential oils: Thymus essential oil and Stevia essential oils (0, 0.1 and 0.2 mg*l-1). Data were subjected to analysis of variance based on the factorial experiment model in the layout completely randomized design. Mean comparison was performed using the Duncan’s multiple range test. Parameters of fresh weight, stem bending, capitulum diameter, carotenoid pigments of petal and vase-life longevity were evaluated during 12 days. The highest fresh weight was obtained when cut flowers were held in a solution containing pulse1 + 250 mg*l-1 BA. Among all treatments, 8-HQS treatment showed the best effects on preventing stem bending, increasing capitulum diameter and also on prolonging of vase-life, but nonetheless, the effects of pulse treatments and 8-HQS concentrations were insignificant. To conclude, 200 mg*l-1 8-HQS without pulse treatment has the potential to be used as a commercial preservative solution to improve the keeping quality and vase-life of this important cut flower.