Pg. 25-26 Pollination and Fruit-Set in Litchi: Final Report

Honeybee foraging activity in a litchi orchard was monitored by investigating returning foragers for nectar, water, pollen and bee-glue. At commencement of flowering 22 beehives were introduced into a 10 ha orchard. Both nectar and pollen were collected throughout the day from litchi florets, as well as during the entire flowering period. Water was collected mainly in the afternoon, on some days only. No bee-glue was collected during the period investigated.

In a second experiment in which fruit-set was studied, 400 panicles were marked on 20 trees and left open. A second set of 400 panicles was bagged with 1 mm2 gauze to exclude insects. A mean number of nine fruits (range 0 – 44) per open-pollinated panicle was recorded, compared to less than one fruit per bagged panicle. The mean weight per fruit was 10 g per fruit for open panicles.

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