173 research outputs found

    Morphological and agronomical characterization of eggplant genetic resources from the Sicily area

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    The eggplant is a vegetable crop widely grown throughout Sicily both in greenhouse and open field. This study was carried out by the Department of Agri-Environmental Systems at the University of Palermo in the Spring/Summer of 2011 in open fields. The aim of the study was to characterize 6 eggplant ecotypes (G1-G6) and three eggplant varieties (Birgah, Black bell and Viola di Firenze) from a morphological, phenological and production point of view, gathered from Sicily and the smaller islands. The genotypes G1 and G3 were found to be more productive than the varieties used in the test field. Ecotype G1 produced fruits which were dark violet and highly glossy, and produced the lowest percentage of discarded fruits, ecotype G2 had a high marketable fruit yield per plant, whereas populations G3, G5 and G6 were found to have a high average fruit weight. The 6 ecotypes were found to be highly non-uniform as regards both the plant and fruit morphological characteristics. Concerning the ratio between the fruit length and maximum diameter, ecotype G1 was found not to differ from G3 and, similarly, G5 was found to be not significantly different from G6. The ecotypes G1, G3, G5 and G6 produced higher or equal yields compared to the 3 varieties tested in the field study. The shorter period between the planting phenological stage and the flowering stage was found in ecotype G2. This earliness is also reflected in an earlier production stage with potential positive effects at commercial leve

    Grafting suitability of Sicilian eggplant ecotypes onto Solanum torvum: Fruit composition, production and phenology

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    The eggplant (Solanum melongena L.) is one of the most widely cultivated crops in tropical and temperate regions around the world and is suitable for propagation through grafting. In many parts of the world, grafting is a routine technique used in continuous cropping systems, because in the horticulture field is a sustainable technique that allows cultivators to overcome abiotic or biotic stress. The objective of this research was to evaluate the suitability at the grafting of four Sicilian eggplant ecotypes grown in open field in Sicily, Italy. Vegetables in general are a great source of minerals in the human diet and the eggplant (Solanum melongena L.) provides significant quantities of various minerals, among which are P, K, Ca and Mg. The study demonstrated that grafting increased marketable yield. Furthermore, grafting has increased the amount of Ca, Fe, Zn and Cu in the fruit, while reducing the amount of Na, Mg and Mn. This variation is of significant interest, as lower levels of Na and Mn favour a reduction in hypertension and help keep blood pressure under control. Grafted plant height after 35 days is positively correlated with the average number of marketable fruits per plant (r = 0.607) and percentage of discard production (r = 0.583). Furthermore, after 35 days, the non-grafted plant’s height was also negatively correlated with the total average production (r = -0.528), the average marketable production (r = -0.558), and the average weight of marketable fruits (r = -0.815). This research confirmed that Solanum torvum selection Australys rootstock gave Sicilian eggplant ecotypes increased vigor in the initial 35 days from planting, increased yields while increasing the number of marketable fruit, and creating fruit with more healthful qualities


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    Spatial approaches to fisheries management in the form of total or partial exclusion zones have attracted much interest in recent years, though relatively little is known in practice about how such measures impact fishermen or other groups of stakeholders. The present paper hopes to shed light on this issue by reporting the results of a recently completed EU project investigating the effects of a trawl ban introduced in the Gulf of Castellammare, NW Sicily, in 1990. The results indicate that the prohibition on trawling led to stock recovery and improved financial returns for the artisanal fishermen who have been permitted to operate within the restricted area. There is evidence, however, that the displacement of trawlers to the outer periphery of the exclusion zone has impacted adversely on artisanal operators located immediately outside the trawl ban area.Resource /Energy Economics and Policy,

    Aspetti dell'alimentazione di alcune specie ittiche batiali del Canale di Sicilia: Aristaeomorpha foliacea, Nezumia sclerorhynchus, Coelorhynchus coelorhynchus e Hymenocephalus italicus

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    Il gruppo dei Crostacei Decapodi comprende specie molto eterogenee per quanto riguarda la posizione occupata nei livelli trofici: vi sono rappresentate infatti specie necrofaghe, detritivore, nonchè attive predatrici, cosicchè ci sembra di grande interesse indagare il ruolo svolto da una specie di ingente valore commerciale - l'Aristaeomorpha foliacea - nell'ambito delle reti trofiche batiali. Esistono alcuni studi analoghi, riguardanti però Aristeus antennatus, effettuati in diverse aree mediterranee (acque spagnole, Mar Ligure); si è pensato dunque di condurre, parallelamente ad una ricerca sull'alimentazione di alcuni Selaci che è stata avviata a partire dal IX TRAWL survey (ved. ID/W.PR/CP-GB-MG-GD-FB/1/0690/DRAFT), lo studio dei contenuti stomacali di A. foliacea catturata durante le campagne di pesca organizzate dall'ITPP, a partire dal X survey. Per conoscere meglio anche i rapporti preda - predatore e/o di competizione tra questa specie ed altre presenti nello stesso ambiente, oltre ad usufruire delle informazioni provenienti dal parallelo programma sui Selaci, si è pensato di studiare la dieta di tre Teleostei Macruridi comunemente presenti sugli stessi fondi di pesca degli Aristeidi: Nezumia sclerorhynchus, Coelorhynchus coelorhynchus e Hymenocephalus italicus

    Cutting Type and IBA Treatment Duration Affect <i>Teucrium fruticans</i> Adventitious Root Quality

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    Root development of stem cuttings of Silver Germander (Teucrium fruticans) was investigated in relation to cutting type and indole-3-butyric acid (IBA) treatment. Terminal cuttings of a clone grown in Sicily were trimmed to three types: terminal cuttings with apex (TWA), terminal cuttings without apex (TWOA) or sub-terminal cuttings (ST). To verify the cutting response to exogenous auxin, cuttings were dipped to a 2.0 cm depth in a 0.5% indole-3-butyric acid solution for 0, 5 or 7 minutes. Overall percent survival was 97 to 98%. Rooting percent, root number and root length were affected by cutting type and indole-3-butyric acid treatment. In general, TWA cuttings demonstrated a higher capacity to form roots than cuttings without apex (TWOA and ST cuttings). In absence of indole-3-butyric acid treatment, TWA and ST cuttings gave higher rooting percentages than TWOA cuttings. Exposing cuttings to indole-3-butyric acid improved percent rooting, number of roots per cutting and root length. The best results in terms of rooting percentage and root number per cuttings were obtained with TWA cuttings in combination with 7 min indole-3-butyric acid basal dip. However, cuttings taken farther down the stem, such as sub-terminal cuttings gave satisfactory rooting performance as well. We suggest that the use of all cutting types tested associated to indole-3-butyric acid basal dip for 5 or 7 min may be beneficial to propagators wishing to produce T. fruticans rooted cuttings with well-developed root system

    Fishery reserves in the Mediterranean Sea: the Gulf of Castellammare case study

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    The effects of fisheries management based on artificial reefs and on trawl banning are explored in the Gulf of Castellammare fishery reserve by means of biological (from trammel and trawl survey) data collected during several research programs between 1990 and 2001. The artificial reefs have caused an increase of diversity but not of biomass, as suggested by the comparison between the associated fish assemblage and that of nearby sandy bottoms. The associated species however do not have any trophic relation to the boulders, except the twobanded seabream, Diplodus vulgaris. An overall increase of experimental trammel net yields in the artificial reef area was observed from 1990 to 1998, due mainly to pelagic species associated with the boulders. The trawl ban caused a dramatic increase of groundfish biomass in the protected area (+711% after four years, total species). Different species had different increase rates, from 2-fold for the musky octopus, Eledone moschata to 127-fold for the gurnard, Lepidotrigla cavillone. Eight and ten years after the ban started, the yields did not vary significantly in the overall area, but decreased near to (both outside and inside) the protected area, probably due to increased legal and illegal trawling. The mean size did not increase in three studied species, except for the monkfish, Lophius budegassa. In conclusion the Gulf of Castellammare fishery reserve is considered a positive example of marine coastal fisheries management, especially considering the effects of the trawl ban on the abundance of groundfish stocks, although the cooperation between scientists and administrative bodies is still far from optimal

    Interactive Effects of Genotype and Molybdenum Supply on Yield and Overall Fruit Quality of Tomato

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    Molybdenum (Mo) is an essential trace element for plant growth, development, and production. However, there is little known about the function and effects of molybdenum in tomato plants. The present study assessed the influences of different Mo concentrations on four tomato F1 hybrids (“Bybal” F1, “Tyty” F1, “Paride” F1, and “Ornela” F1) grown using a soilless system with different Mo levels [0.0, 0.5 (standard NS), 2.0, and 4.0 μmol L−1, respectively]. The crop yield, plant vigor, fruit skin color, TA, fruit water content as well as the accumulation of SSC, and some antioxidant compounds such as lycopene, polyphenols and ascorbic acid were evaluated. The minerals concentration, including nitrogen (N), Mo, iron (Fe), and copper (Cu), were measured in tomato fruits. Results revealed that tomato plants grown with 2.0 μmol Mo L−1 compared to plants grown with 0.5 μmol Mo L−1 incurred a significant increase of total yield by 21.7%, marketable yield by 9.1%, aboveground biomass by 16.7%, plant height at 50 DAT by 6.5%, polyphenol content by 3.5%, ascorbic acid by 1.0%, SSC by 3.5%, N fruit content by 24.8%, Mo fruit content by 20.0%, and Fe fruit content by 60.5%. However, the Mo concentration did not significantly influence the average fruit weight, b* fruit skin color coordinate and TA. Furthermore, tomato fruits from plants grown with 2.0 μmol Mo L−1 showed a lower Cu fruit content (16.1%) than fruits from plants grown with 0.5 μmol Mo L−1 (standard NS). Consequently, our study highlights the different behavior of the tomato genotypes tested when subjected to different levels of Mo concentration in the nutrient solution. Nevertheless, taking all in consideration our results clearly suggest that a Mo fertilization of 2.0 μmol Mo L−1 effectively enhance crop performance and overall fruit quality of tomato
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