The Impact of Prohexadione-calcium on Grape Vegetative and Reproductive Development and Wine Chemistry
Prohexadione-calcium (P-ca), as ApogeeTM, was evaluated in 2000 and 2001 for impact to grape vegetative and reproductive development. In 2000, P-ca (250 mg/L) was applied to Seyval, Cabernet Sauvignon, and Cabernet franc (125, 250, and 375 mg/L). P-ca reduced primary shoot growth for all cultivars and decreased cane pruning weight of Seyval. P-ca (375 mg/L) increased Cabernet franc canopy gaps but increased Cabernet Sauvignon lateral leaf area and leaf layer number. P-ca reduced components of yield for all cultivars. In 2001, P-ca (250 mg/L) was applied singularly at weekly intervals to Cabernet Sauvignon clusters and pre and post-bloom to Cabernet franc and Chardonnay canopies. Application at E-L stages 21 and 23 decreased Cabernet Sauvignon fruit set whereas application at E-L stages 26, 27, and 29 reduced berry weight without impacting fruit set. Berry weight reduction correlated to higher color intensity (420+520 nm), anthocyanins, total phenols and phenol-free glycosyl-glucose (PFGG). Cabernet franc vegetative and reproductive development was generally not affected yet treatment increased absorbance at 280, 420, and 520 nm, color intensity, anthocyanins and total phenols. Pre-bloom applications inhibited Chardonnay vegetative development, and reduced components of yield, and fruit chemistry values: hydroxycinnamates, total phenols, flavonoids, PPFG and absorbance at 280 and 320 nm. Post-bloom applications did not affect Chardonnay vegetative or reproductive development, yet increased PFGG. Treatment did not affect Chardonnay wine chemistry but two post-bloom applications increased Cabernet franc wine anthocyanins and total phenols. Wine aroma and flavor triangle difference tests did not indicate significant treatment differences.