The effects of pinching treatments carried out at the 3- and 6-true-leaf stages on harvest term and plant growth in processing tomato ‘Shuho’ (Solanum lycopersicum L.) were examined. Weekly yields in the 3- and 6-true-leaf pinching treatments were increased compared with those in the untreated control at 1 and 2 wk after the start of harvest, respectively. There were no differences among all treatments in yield, fruit weight, fruit number, or marketable fruit ratio. However, the fruit set ratio in the 3-true-leaf pinching treatment was increased more than those in the other treatments. The flowering periods in the pinching treatment groups were shorter than those of the control. The number of flowers per lateral shoot in the pinching treatment groups was greater than that in the control. DW in the lateral shoots in the 3-true-leaf pinching treatment was significantly greater than that in other treatment groups. The distribution of nitrogen and calcium in the lateral shoots in the 3-true-leaf pinching treatment was increased compared with those in other treatment groups. This result suggests that shortening of the harvest term and increasing initial fruit yield in the 3-true-leaf pinching treatment would be more efficient practices in processing tomato cultivation.
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