In this study, the effective pollination period (EPP) was studied using three loquat cultivars with different seed set abilities, ‘Dawuxing’, ‘Longquan No.5’ and ‘Chuannong No.1’, so as to identify the factors determining fruit set and seed set. The EPP was determined by delayed and hand pollination, and the factors affecting the EPP were evaluated through histochemical tests and fluorescence microscopy. The EPP was measured as the capacity to set fruit and seeds after pollination with ‘259’ loquat pollen from anthesis to seven days after anthesis (DAA). The stigmatic receptivity closely fitted the EPP and thus appeared to be the main factor determining fruit set and seed set in ‘Dawuxing’ and ‘Longquan No.5’. In ‘Chuannong No.1’, low rate of style with intense stigma receptivity and early ovule degeneration appeared to be the factor determining seed set. We concluded that loquat flower receptivity is genotype-dependent either on stigmatic receptivity, as in ‘Dawuxing’ and ‘Longquan No.5’, or stigmatic receptivity and ovule degeneration, as in ‘Chuannong No.1’.
Key words: Loquat, effective pollination period, stigma receptivity, pollen tube growth, ovule degeneration, seed set.
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