Chilling response of 'Granny Smith' apple lateral buds inhibited by distal shoot tissues
Apple (Malus x domestica Borkh.) shoots were decapitated before or after chilling and then forced to budburst to determine the influence of distal inhibition (paradormancy) on the chilling response of lateral buds. Shoots were chilled and forced with the presence or absence of an inhibitory distal disbudded shoot piece. Endogenous cytokinins were determined from distal and proximal segments of shoots segmented before and after chilling and/or forcing. The isolation of lateral buds from distal inhibition by decapitation before chilling resulted in a dramatic increase in growth rate. This increase is greater than that observed in terminal buds during the normal development of acrotony on intact shoots. Distal shoot tissues appear to inhibit the chilling response of lateral buds. On intact shoots cytokinin increased more in the distal shoot tissues, but in decapitated shoots cytokinin increased more in the proximal shoot tissues. Increased cytokinin in the proximal stem segment following decapitation is possibly associated with an increased lateral bud growth rate. © 2001 Elsevier Science B.V. All rights reserved.