• Evaluation of AuxiGro® WP on Cantaloupe Production in the Low Desert

      Rethwisch, Michael D.; Reay, Mark; Grudovich, Jessica L.; Wellman, Jessica J.; Ramos, David M.; Hawpe, Erica; Berger, Lois; Byrne, David N.; Baciewicz, Patti (College of Agriculture and Life Sciences, University of Arizona (Tucson, AZ), 2005-12)
      AuxiGro® WP was applied to three cantaloupe fields in the Palo Verde Valley of far eastern California in the spring of 2004. One field utilized evaluated high rates (3.4x higher than other fields for each rate) of AuxiGro® WP for the purposes of phytotoxicity observations, while either a single application or two applications of varying rates of AuxiGro® WP were applied in the other two fields respectively. No visual symptoms of phytotoxicity were noted for AuxiGro® WP in any of the fields where applied, including two honeydew fields in the fall of 2003. Applications of any rate of AuxiGro® WP did not result in a statistical increase in numbers of melons from either a single or a double application on either variety (Ranger, Topmark respectively) used for yield data in this experiment. Data indicated that statistical differences existed for some melon parameters between treatments means in the hybrid variety (Ranger) but these statistical differences were not present for most fruit parameters in the open pollinated variety (Topmark), although some of the same trends were noted. These differences may be due to differing lengths of time from application to harvest. Of only the four rates of AuxiGro® WP evaluated, the heaviest melons were noted in the 4 oz./acre rate followed by the 8 oz./acre rate in both cantaloupe varieties, with this rate resulting in slightly heavier cantaloupes than the untreated check in both varieties. The one oz./acre rate of AuxiGro® WP also resulted in slightly shorter and lighter melons for both varieties than did application of only Solar™, but brix was numerically higher for this rate of AuxiGro® WP than for the Solar™ treatment. The two lowest mean brix were noted from in both cantaloupe varieties treated by Solar™ treatment alone and the 4 oz./acre rate of AuxiGro® WP + CalMax treatment, with these means being statistically less than the untreated check in 'Ranger' cantaloupes. CalMax by itself resulted in slightly smaller melons than the untreated check in both melon varieties. The AuxiGro® WP + CalMax treatment resulted in the largest melons (both longest and widest) of any treatment in the 'Ranger' cantaloupe field, with the difference in length being statistically greater than CalMax alone. Although larger melons would normally be thought to ripen earlier and therefore have higher brix readings, usage of AuxiGro® WP in combination with CalMax is thought to reduce stress as plants are still quite actively growing, hence the lower brix readings.