Comparing chlorophyll concentrations and plant vigor characteristics between strawberry (Fragaria x ananassa) accessions
LE3 .A278 2022
Bachelor of Science
The pigment chlorophyll plays an important role in plant vigor and productivity. Strawberries (Fragaria x ananassa) are a popular and economically important crop in the agriculture sector. When choosing which variety of strawberry to plant, important characteristics include time of harvest, size, shape and yield of berries, and resistance to drought or high temperature conditions among other factors. The relationship of these traits to chlorophyll content has not yet been widely studied in strawberry. This thesis examines the vigor characteristics and chlorophyll concentrations of 288 strawberry accessions grown in Kentville, Nova Scotia. Weekly observations of vigor characteristics and monthly chlorophyll content measurements were completed from June to August 2021. Control plots of the cultivars ‘Lila’, ‘Jewel’, and ‘Valley Sunset’ were also observed weekly. There were significant differences in chlorophyll content in the control plots and in the larger trial of 288 accessions due to date of observation, cultivar, and the interaction of date x cultivar. Results showed control plots had a significant decrease in vigor from July 12 to August 10, but no difference between cultivars. The larger trial of 288 accessions indicated significant differences in vigor ratings due to date of observation and cultivar, but not interaction between date x cultivar. Chlorophyll concentrations were weakly correlated with vigor. suggesting that the relationship between chlorophyll and plant vigor cannot be described by a single linear relationship. Future research should include measuring chlorophyll concentrations earlier in the season, and comparing ratios of chlorophylls to carotenoids.
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