Yellow passionfruit (Passiflora edulis f. flavicarpa O. Deg.) is a tropical fruit crop that is meeting increasing demand both in local and international markets in South America. The lance fly, Dasiops inedulis (Diptera: Lonchaeidae), affects P. edulis floral buds and flowers, and is thought to cause important yield losses in this crop. In Colombia, D. inedulis are commonly controlled through calendar-based applications of chemically synthesized insecticides, and no scientific criteria exist to guide pest management. In the present study, we simulated D. inedulis injury to passionfruit plants, over the course of three production cycles. We assessed the effect of seven different categories of flower bud removal (from 0% to 79.9%) on passionfruit yield and fruit quality parameters. Removal rates above 20% caused a significant reduction in the number of flowers, while yield levels were lowest at 50–79.9% bud removal. With increasing rates of flower bud removal, we observed higher initial production of buds and lower levels of natural abortion of floral and fruiting structures. For the three consecutive harvests, maximum yield levels were 7.57±5.51 kg (mean±SD; with 0–9.9% damage), and minimum yield was 2.37±2.15 kg (60–69.9% damage) per plant. For fruit quality parameters, D. inedulis injury did not affect fruit pulp weight or the content of soluble solids (Brix). Our work provides insights into the impact of D. inedulis on yellow passionfruit production, and constitutes a basis for future integrated pest management programs for this pest.
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