The influence of rain cover on respiration, quality attributes and storage of cherries (<i>Prunus avium</i> L.)


  • Mina Kafkaletou Agricultural University of Athens, Greece
  • Miltiadis V Christopoulos Agricultural University of Athens, Greece
  • Maria-Eleni Ktistaki Agricultural University of Athens, Greece
  • Thomas Sotiropoulos Pomology Institute, Hellenic Agricultural Organization ‘Demeter’, R.R. Station 38, 59035, Naousea.
  • Eleni Tsantili Agricultural University of Athens, Greece



rain cover, cherry ripening, respiration, storage, quality attributes, quantitive descriptive analysis, stem


The effects of rain cover on tree yield, fruit cracking and quality ,of two cherry (Prunus avium L.) cultivars, ‘Adriana’ and ‘Noire de Meched’ (‘NM’), were investigated. Cherry quality was determined at harvest and after storage at 1°C in air for up to 21 d. Rates of CO2 production and O2 uptake were determined at weekly intervals during and after storage. A taste panel rated quality attributes of ‘NM’ after 14 d storage. The results showed that ‘Adriana’ was completely, but ‘NM’ moderately resistant to cracking, while covering prevented the symptom. Respiration rates showed immediate and continuous cooling requirements of all fruit. In ‘Adriana’, covering reduced weight loss during the first 7-d storage, and promoted the peel colour (PC) and total soluble solids subsequently. Under different environmental conditions, PC and total phenolics were advanced in uncovered ‘NM’ at harvest and after storage. In both cultivars, covering did not affect negatively the yield, nor did it significantly the fruit weight, firmness, titratable acidity, pH value, total antioxidant activity, stem browning and resistance to stem removal. ‘Adriana’ and ‘NM’ retained good quality for 21 and 14 d storage, respectively.