A new bio-stimulant has been launched to project flowering crops from frost.
Frost continues to be a worry for many fruit growers. Frost losses can be particularly catastrophic in flowering crops such as apples and pears.
UK-based AminoA has developed a new natural plant bio-stimulant, which reduces crop damage by stimulating the production of anti-freeze protein (AFP) in flowering fruit crops.
While frost injury rarely causes complete crop loss in soft fruit such as strawberries, as the strawberry plant produces flowers over a two- to three-week period, flower buds are particularly susceptible to frost injury any time after bud break, at temperatures of -1°C or lower.
Frost damages the centre of the flower, with the centre turning black, while the petals appear uninjured.
The blackening occurs within a few hours to one day after the frost and the frost can also damage the developing fruit, deforming the berries.
ICEAAX is a new bio-stimulant which uses a high concentration of L-isomer amino acids to provide reliable results down to -3°C, depending on duration.
It comes in the form of a liquid L-isomer amino-acid complex that stimulates the production of AFP in flowering fruit crops.
By applying at flowering, immediately before a frost event, AminoA ICEAAX lowers the freezing point of the cell cytoplasm, enabling the crop to resist the late frost.
It also facilitates osmosis to enable water molecules to move into the intercellular space, where freezing is less damaging than intracellularly.
These amino-acids are the building blocks of the AFPs, which some plants are able to manufacture.