Chapter 4

Botanical and Pomological Aspects of Stone Fruits Physiology, Agronomy and Orchard Management

Daniela Giovannini, Alessandro Liverani, Alisea Sartori and Guido Cipriani


Prunus is a genus of about 230 species, distributed primarily in north temperate regions. Prunus has been historically divided into a number of genera by various botanists. Three subgenera correspond to broad categories of stone fruits. Main domesticated species are peach, apricot, cherry and plum. Different characters have been used to uniquely identify genotypes and cultivars. In the present chapter the main pomological and phenological characteristics are presented. Features and ripening dates are described for 72 peach cultivars: 19 with white flesh, 28 with yellow flesh, 13 canning peaches and 12 with flat shape. Forty-one different nectarines, 46 apricots, 48 cherries and 18 Japanese and 5 European plums cultivars are also described. A second part of the chapter is also devoted to the description of the physiological phenomena related to production and to the main agricultural techniques and best practices for orchard management.

Total Pages: 161-242 (82)

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