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Interactive effect of harvest time and location on physicochemical maturity indices of mmupudu (Mimusops zeyheri) fruit

Morongwa Lillian Rammone, Tieho Paulus Mafeo, Kagiso Given Shadung

Abstract


Generally, fruit trees development and maturity are affected by climatic conditions of where they grow. Fruit maturity at harvest is the critical factor, which determines fruit weight, juice content, fruit marketability, fruit disorders, titratable acidity and soluble solids in numerous fruit. The objective of this study was therefore, to determine the effect of location and harvest time on physicochemical maturity indices of M. zeyheri fruit. A 2 x 4 factorial experiment arranged randomised complete block design was established with the factors being two locations and four harvest times replicated five times. At each location, 20 fruit per replication were analysed for physical (external) and chemical (internal) maturity indices. Interactively, the effect of harvest time and location were highly significant on fruit firmness, hue angle, lightness, chroma, total soluble solids (TSS), titrated acidity (TA) and pH. However, location as a main factor had significant effect on fruit weight, fruit diameter, eye colour, hue angle, chroma and all measured internal maturity indices, while harvest time had significant effect on fruit diameter, eye colour, fruit firmness, hue angle, lightness, chroma, TSS and pH. Relatively, fruit weight, fruit diameter and TSS: TA were higher in Bochum on average, while Turfloop was higher in all other measured maturity indices. However, chroma, firmness loss, hue angle, lightness and eye colour increased with each progressing harvest time in both locations. Total soluble solids and TA increased with each harvest in Turfloop while it decreased in fruit collected from Bochum. Fruit pH, fruit weight and fruit diameter were found to be higher during September harvest in both locations. The results of this study therefore suggested that M. zeyheri fruit reaches maturity during September which is when the first and second fruit growth and development stages ceases. Therefore, it is recommended that M. zeyheri fruit be harvested in September as they can ripen after harvesting due to their climacteric nature.

Keywords


Commercialisation, domesticated fruit trees, non-domesticated fruit trees, exotic fruit trees, indigenous fruit trees, maturity indices

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References


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