Mg++ is generally considered to be a phloem-mobile element (Welch, 1986). The accumulation of Mg++ in the berry occurs in two successive phases, before and after veraison (Doneche and Chardonnet 1992). According to several authors, the high rate of accumulation of this element post-veraison is thus consistent with flow through the phloem into the grape berry after veraison (Lang and Thorpe 1989, Greenspan et al. 1994). In Grenache noir berries we have observed that Mg++ entered in the berry mostly before veraison, and thereafter the accumulation of this cation remained more or less constant after veraison in NI treatments. It however appeared to increase in the I treatments (Fig. 3c).
By contrast, the concentration of Mg++ expressed per unit of dry matter (mg g-1 DW) declines markedly to below that occurring prior to veraison (data not shown). In all likelihood, the decrease in concentration of this element could be attributed directly to the gain in berry size and solutes accumulation in post-veraison phase.
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