Influence of leaf area density and trellis/training system on the light microclimate within grapevine canopies
The influence of leaf area density and canopy configuration on the light microclimate within 6 wine grape trellis/ training systems commonly used in California (single curtain, double curtain, vertically shoot positioned, lyre, Smart-Henry and Smart-Dyson) was examined in two experimental vineyards (Oakville and Parlier). Mean canopy leaf area density varied considerably among the systems, ranging from approximately 2.8 m2m-3 for the Wye to 10.1 m2m-3 for the VSP. Non-positioned systems were characterized by a layer of relatively high leaf area density in their outer envelope and lower leaf area densities in their interior. In contrast, leaf area density in positioned systems increased from the top of the canopy moving downward to the fruit zone. Mean leaf area density within the fruit zone ranged from near 6 m2m-3 in the DC to over 12 m2m-3 in the VSP and LYR. The pattern of light attenuation within the canopy was generally similar among the systems, with PPF reaching its lowest level in or near the fruit zone. Fruit zone PPF was >10 % of ambient sunlight in low density canopies and <5 % in high density canopies. A gradual decline in fruit zone PPF was found as leaf area density increased in positioned systems. PPF decreased sharply in the fruit zone of non-positioned systems as leaf area density increased from 2 to 4 m2m-3, then leveled as leaf area density exceeded 6 m2m-3. Fruit zone PPF decreased as the leaf area density of divided systems increased from 2 to 4 m2m-3, then declined gradually as leaf area density approached 6 m2m-3. Fruit zone PPF in non-divided systems was initially lower, and declined more gradually as leaf area density increased, compared to divided systems. Compared to positioned systems, leaf layer number in the fruit zone rose more sharply in non-positioned systems as leaf area density increased. Leaf layer number was greater in nondivided systems compared to divided systems, but declined at similar rates in both systems as leaf area density increased. Shoot-positioned systems achieved well-exposed fruit zones at higher leaf area densities, but lower leaf layer numbers, compared to non-positioned canopies.
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