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ANDRIOLO, Jerônimo Luiz et al. Growth and fruit yield of greenhouse tomato plants under high plant density and defoliation. Cienc. Rural [online]. 2004, vol.34, n.4, pp. 1251-1253. ISSN 0103-8478. http://dx.doi.org/10.1590/S0103-84782004000400047.
The objective of this study was to determine the effect of plant density combined with defoliation on growth and fruit yield of greenhouse tomato plants grown in soil. Treatments consisted of 3.3 (T1), 6.7 (T2) and 10.0 (T3) plants m-2. In T1, three leaves per sympod were left. In T2, for each two plants within a row, on the first plant one leaf was kept in the first sympod, whereas on the second plant two leaves were kept in the sympod of the same order. In the second sympod, two and one leaves were kept, inversely from the preceding one, and so on during the growth of the crop. In T3, only one leaf per sympod was kept. The number of leaves, trusses and fruits was counted, and fresh and dry mass of ripe fruits was determined. The number of leaves and fruits was similar among treatments in autumn. In spring, it was higher on T2 plants. Fruit yield was higher on T2 plants in both experiments. For commercial production of this crop grown in soil under protected cultivation, the plant density and defoliation procedure tested in T2 might be used to increase fruit yield.
Keywords : Lycopersicon esculentum; plant development; dry mass; greenhouse.