The content of reserve carbohydrates in the rhizome of asparagus (Asparagus officinalis) as a function of progressing senescence of fern
This study investigated the distribution and quantity of carbohydrate fractions in storage roots and rhizome buds during progressing senescence of asparagus fern. It was tested, if the content of carbohydrates in storage roots would be affected by an early removal of the fern at end of September. An early cutting of the fern would be advantageous for technical and plant health reasons. In an asparagus field experiment the content of the carbohydrates fructans, fructose, glucose and sucrose as well as the degrees Brix were measured at 2- to 3-week intervals from the end of August to November in 2015 and 2016. One treatment included the early removal of the fern with beginning senescence at the end of September, in the other treatment the fern remained at the plant until November. Subsequent to the removal of the fern in September, until November the content of all measured carbohydrate fractions in the storage roots was temporary decreased but increased thereafter up to a level similar as in the control treatment. We conclude that early fern removal at the end of September, after phylloclades have started to turn yellow, might not have a negative effect on the yield of the following year. The latter should be confirmed in future experiments.
Feller, C.; Müller, A. 2018. The content of reserve carbohydrates in the rhizome of asparagus (Asparagus officinalis) as a function of progressing senescence of fern. Acta Horticulturae 1223, 189-194.