Effect of cold storage on stomatal functionality, water relations and flower performance in cut roses

Ernst J. Woltering*, Maxence J.M. Paillart

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

9 Citations (Scopus)


Symptoms of water stress are the most frequent cause for the “end of vase life” in prior stored roses. It was hypothesized that dark storage may alter the stomatal functionality and may cause water balance problems during the subsequent vase life period. The effect of short- and long-term storage on functionality of stomatal and subsequent flower performance was investigated in two rose cultivars (cvs) (‘Akito’ and ‘Grand Prix’) with presumed different sensitivity for development of water stress symptoms during the vase life. Compared to no storage, both short term storage (2.3 d at 6 °C) and long term storage (28 d at 0.5 °C) negatively affected the stomatal functionality in cultivar (cv) Akito. Stomatal functionality parameters such as the rapidity of the closing response upon dehydration and the relative water content at which stomata are fully closed showed good correlations with flower performance parameters (flower weight changes and vase life). This indicates that in cv Akito, the decreased stomatal functionality is one of the factors involved in the poor vase life of prior stored flowers. In cv Grand Prix, however, storage did not greatly affect the stomatal functionality but storage negatively affected flower performance in a comparable way as in cv Akito. A pre-treatment with abscisic acid prior to storage slightly improved stomatal functionality in both cvs, but no clear effect on flower performance was observed. Addition of the bactericide 8-HQC to the vase water improved flower performance in both cvs but could not alleviate the negative effect of cold storage on flower performance. Results show that in roses cold storage may, depending on the cultivar, negatively affect stomatal functionality and this may contribute to water stress and ultimately flower failure. In addition, cold storage may negatively affect xylem water conducting properties through processes not related to bacterial contamination.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)66-73
JournalPostharvest Biology and Technology
Publication statusPublished - Feb 2018


  • Cold storage
  • Cut flowers
  • Rose
  • Stomatal functionality
  • Water relations

Fingerprint Dive into the research topics of 'Effect of cold storage on stomatal functionality, water relations and flower performance in cut roses'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this