Quality of Different Papaya Cultivars Grown in the Greenhouse throughout the Year in Subtropical Regions
Harvest time is one of the factors affecting postharvest fruit quality. Under the subtropical condition, greenhouse cultivation allows a year-round harvest. However, the crop should meet the quality and the marketing criteria for overall customer satisfaction. This study aims to determine the impact of the harvest season on the quality characteristics of papaya fruit. For this purpose, two different cultivars (Sel-42 and Tainung) were grown in the greenhouse and harvested in the winter, the summer, the spring, and the autumn of two years. Sampling was carried out at the same visual maturity stage at each season. The two cultivars had soft fruit flesh almost throughout the year, although the fruit harvested in the winter had a better visual appeal in terms of color. Both fruit cultivars harvested in the autumn had higher soluble solids and lower acidity. The highest concentrations of total phenolic content and L-ascorbic acid were observed in the spring and summer season harvested fruits although there was no significant difference between those (P > 0.05). It was concluded that the growth in the greenhouse minimizes the harvest season effects on papaya fruit quality. Thus, greenhouse cultivation is recommended for a higher quality product, especially in a subtropical climate.