• How big is the orchard footprint?

How big is the orchard footprint?

  • May 1st, 2011

The galvanized wire used for trellises might contribute significantly to the environmental footprint of an orchard because of the large amount of energy used in its manufacture.

Washington State University researchers are assessing the environmental impact of the typical Washington apple orchard.

Dr. Usama Zaher, biological systems engineer, is developing a [...]

  • Late grafting can be successful

Late grafting can be successful

  • May 1st, 2011

Imperial Gala on Tatura Trellis were bark grafted in early October (spring) 2009. A severe wind and rainstorm in the summer damaged many grafts that had taken. 2)Bad weather in October (spring) 2010, prevented the grafters from regrafting the trees. They returned in early December (summer) and placed brown [...]

  • Last Bite: Gala breeder put flavor first

Last Bite: Gala breeder put flavor first

  • April 15th, 2011

Gale Gala is a sport of Royal Gala discovered by Wally Gale in Wenatchee, Washington, and patented in 1997. Inset: The Pacific Gala is a red mutation of Royal Gala discovered by Dick and Larry Olsen at Prosser, Washington, and patented in 1996.

Gala was developed more than 70 years [...]

  • Wide scope for rootstock research

Wide scope for rootstock research

  • April 15th, 2011

International Fruit Tree Association members tour a research plot at Wapato, Washington, where a wide range of apple rootstocks are being compared.

Rootstock development is a huge area of research that goes beyond studying the survival, size, and yield efficiency of rootstocks, says Dr. Terence Robinson, horticulturist at Cornell University, [...]

  • Biennial bearing

Biennial bearing

  • April 1st, 2011

Developing seeds inside apples send strong signals to apple shoots telling them not to set flower buds for the next year. Thinning reduces this signal.
Photo courtesy of Steven McArtney

Biennial bearers are the bane of apple growers, but the industry is growing more of them. Many newer varieties, like [...]

Thinning for larger fruit

  • April 1st, 2011

One way to get consistent crops of large, high quality apples is to hand thin to size. So if you need to thin by hand, the best idea is to instruct workers about how many apples you want per tree and tell them to take off the smallest ones.

That’s [...]

  • Irrigating apples in the Northeast

Irrigating apples in the Northeast

  • April 1st, 2011

Sap flow gauges were used to measure the flow of water through the trunk of a tree.

Researchers working in the experimental apple orchards at Cornell University, New York, are developing an irrigation scheduling model to help apple growers in the Northeast know how much water their trees use.

To apple [...]

  • How to manage scab and mildew

How to manage scab and mildew

  • April 1st, 2011

Powdery mildew appears as superficial, white powdery growth on leaves and shoots that results in the stunting and distortion of young growth. Right: ruit like this Jonathan apple, when infected with powdery mildew, are stunted and russetted, and fruit set may be reduced.

A good [...]

Where to find unusual apples

  • March 15th, 2011

The New York State Experiment Station in Geneva includes a USDA-ARS Plant Genetic Resources Unit, with a germ plasm repository containing one of the world’s largest collections of apple (more than 3,000 accessions of Malus including more than 40 species collected from around the world) and cool-climate grape varieties [...]

  • Color is not a sign of maturity

Color is not a sign of maturity

  • March 15th, 2011

The color and sugar levels of apples are not useful indicators of when the fruit is ready to pick, says Dr. Bill Wolk, postharvest specialist with the Okanagan Tree Fruit Cooperative in British Columbia, Canada. And, delaying harvest for several days to attain more color or sweetness can shorten [...]

  • Unusual apples are researcher’s passion

Unusual apples are researcher’s passion

  • March 15th, 2011

On an ordinary weekday, Dr. Ian Merwin is a Cornell University teacher and researcher who has put his mark on the orchards of New York—and elsewhere—because of his work with orchard floor management systems, including nutrient dynamics, soilborne diseases, ground cover, and weed control.

But in the evenings and on [...]

  • Last Bite

Last Bite

  • March 15th, 2011

Jonagold combines the Jonathan red color splashed over a Golden Delicious background, but some strains are so red they cover the yellow completely.

Jonagold is one of 76 named offspring of the Jonathan apple and one of at least 25 named offspring of Golden Delicious, but the only other variety [...]