• Evaluation of the Effect of Cytokinin Products on Yield of Head Lettuce

      Fonseca, Jorge; Byrne, David N.; Baciewicz, Patti; The University of Arizona – Yuma Agricultural Center, Yuma AZ (College of Agriculture and Life Sciences, University of Arizona (Tucson, AZ), 2005-12)
      A series of replicated trials were conducted during the winter season of 2003 and 2004 to investigate the effect of pre-harvest applications of cytokinins on yield and postharvest quality of intact and fresh-cut lettuce. We report here only those results obtained at harvest. Cytokinins products were applied at different frequency and rates. The crops in the different trials were under different cultivation programs, including different nitrogen fertilization rates. Figures showing the performance of each individual cytokinin product versus the corresponding untreated controls are provided. Results obtained are mixed even for the same cytokinin product, however, some trends were observed. With the exception of products that also contain other plant growth regulators in their formula, high rates (or multiple applications) of the cytokinin products resulted in no effect or even in negative results. For example applications of Cytokin® did not improve yields as was the case with Cytoplex®, from the same manufacturer, under different conditions. The results from this study suggest that lettuce plants can respond to cytokinin applications, but factors to enhance positive response still need to be studied further. Single applications appear to be the most effective program for products containing only cytokinins, while products such as Cytoplex® can increase yield with multiple applications. A discussion addressing the different results obtained with nitrogen rates and the cytokinin products in yield and quality is included.