The aim of this paper was to investigate the radiometric properties of coloured nets used to protect a peach cultivation. The modifications of the solar spectral distribution, mainly in the R and FR wavelength band, influence plant photomorphogenesis by means of the phytochrome and cryptochrome. The phytochrome response is characterized in terms of radiation rate in the red wavelengths (R, 600-700 nm) to that in the farred radiation (FR, 700-800 nm), i.e. the R/FR ratio. The effects of the blue radiation (B, 400-500 nm) is investigated by the ratio between the blue radiation and the far-red radiation, i.e. the B/FR ratio. A BLUE net, a RED net, a YELLOW net, a PEARL net, a GREY net and a NEUTRAL net were tested in Bari (Italy), latitude 41° 05’ N. Peach trees were located in pots inside the greenhouses and in open field. The growth of the trees cultivated in open field was lower in comparison to the growth of the trees grown under the nets. The RED, PEARL, YELLOW and GREY nets increased the growth of the trees more than the other nets. The nets positively influenced the fruit characteristics, such as fruit weight and flesh firmness.
solar radiation, R/FR ratio, photomorphogenesis.