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Sensivity of peach trees to antimacrofouling chemicals added to drip irrigation water

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Author(s): Espada J.L. et al.

Journal: International Journal of AgriScience
ISSN 2228-6322

Volume: 3;
Issue: 8;
Start page: 620;
Date: 2013;

ABSTRACT
Since the first detection of zebra mussels in Spain in 2001, the farmers of the Ebro River basin have been applying chemical oxidizing products to control macrofouling and clogging in their pressure irrigation systems. It is necessary to determine whether chemical water disinfection has phytotoxic effects on woody crops and, particularly, on tree vigor and the quantity and quality of fruits produced.For 18 months, one group of 20 nectarine trees was irrigated with untreated water and three groups of 20 were watered with three different treated waters: 1. chlorine (1 mg/l); 2. hydrogen peroxide (24 mg/l) and peracetic acid (6 mg/l); 3. hydrogen peroxide (5 mg/l) and ferrous sulfate heptahydrate (1 mg/l). The trees irrigated with chemical treated water were not affected by the treatments for most of the assessment criteria: SPAD index, pruning wood weight, levels of five macroelements, average weight per piece of fruit, and quality of the fruit (flesh firmness, total soluble solids, and acidity). However, nectarine trees irrigated with chlorinated water had a mean trunk diameter significantly smaller (6 %) than that of the control group. Chemical treatment even had a positive impact, and trees watered with chlorine or peroxyacetic acid produced 11-14% more kg of fruit than the untreated water control group.
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