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EU regulations stifle fruit exports

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Pacific Northwest apple and pear exports to Europe have dropped dramatically since pesticide ­regulations were harmonized among members of the European Union. Restrictive pesticide residue limits of the European Union have required U.S. producers to

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Tools growers should be using

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To stay in business for the long haul, orchardists must produce exceptional quantities of exceptional fruit. Fortunately, there are many tools available to help growers reach target fruit goals, and increase profitability while decreasing costs,

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New options for fireblight control

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Fireblight in apple.

New products could be registered in the United States this season to manage fireblight in apples and pears.

One is Blossom Protect whose active ingredient is the yeast Aureobasidium pullulans. It was developed by

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Access to China is near

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It’s been almost two decades since the U.S. pear industry began pushing for access to China, but it finally appears that the market might open during the 2012-2013 season. “This has been a

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Exports boost pear returns

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James Foreman advocates expanding exports and giving up segments of the U.S. market to Argentina Lowering f.o.b. prices in a big crop year does nothing to benefit growers, says James

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Committee nominations

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Nominations for board positions with several Pacific Northwest fruit industry groups will be held during upcoming horticultural meetings.
Cherry Marketing Committee
Nominations for three grower positions in District 1 will be held during the North Central Washington

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Self-rooted trees cut costs

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This is not a story out of a horticultural book of fables. It is a story to ruffle your imagination.

While the search goes on unabated for the elusive size-controlling precocious pear rootstock, an experiment at

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Markets shrink for upscale pear

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Comice is the perfect pear for gift boxes, but the gift business has declined.
Courtesy Pear Bureau Northwest

Comice is sometimes referred to as the Queen of Pears, because of its superlative eating quality. “It probably has

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Reinventing Comice

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During the Pear Bureau Northwest’s annual meeting in Portland, Oregon, last summer, its regional managers proposed ideas on how to strengthen demand for Comice pears.

Tim Corkill, regional manager for the West and Southwest, suggested that

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Four leaders better than one

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Belgian horticulturist Tom Deckers discusses the pruning strategy for a four-leader system. Many pear-growing systems put too much energy into production of shoots, he said. In this system, fruit develops close to the leaders.
Geraldine Warner

A

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Focusing on tomorrow today

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Apple, pear, and walnut growers will have several opportunities this winter to learn how to take advantage of natural enemies in their orchards for controlling key pests.

Washington State University entomologist Dr. Vince Jones expects to

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How many pears can the market take?

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Most fresh pears nowadays are still grown on old trees in long-established orchards.

But if, through research, the Pacific Northwest pear industry were able to start growing pears more efficiently in intensive orchards with trees on

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More late cherries coming

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A new tree-fruit acreage survey in Washington State shows a decline in all tree fruits except cherries over the past five years, and suggests that the state will be harvesting more late-season cherries in the

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Grow perfect Forelle pears on Tatura

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Forelle is an attractive, medium-size pear that requires special management and skill to grow it to perfection. The pears need sunlight to remain red throughout their development and obtain the red blush at harvest.
Bas van

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Varieties in the concept pear orchard

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Tony Sunnucks’s concept orchard includes two new varieties developed by Delbard Nurseries in France:

Delsanne (trademark Delbard d’Automne)—A cross of Delbias and Passe Crassane bred at Delbard Nursery in France. The fruit is large and rounded

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Reviving the British pear

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British pear growers have been removing pear orchards at an alarming rate because they’ve not been profitable. Now, the East Malling Research Center in the United Kingdom is trying to demonstrate the feasibility of growing

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Pear heaven

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Jan van Dijk uses “run through” nursery trees, which are taller, calmer, and have more feathers than the traditional knip trees. He removes any strong upright shoots and laterals that don’t have fruit buds at

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U.K. grower demos modern concepts

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Tony Sunnucks, a fruit grower in Kent, England, is developing a concept pear orchard financed by the U.K. fruit marketer OrchardWorld.

The concept orchard at Sunnuck’s Rankins Farm at Linton includes the new pear varieties Delsanne,

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Quince evaluated for hardiness

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Pear trees are inherently inefficient at ­partitioning growth resources to fruit. Modern-day pear rootstock/scion ­combinations typically used in the United States are vigorous, resulting in trees that require ample space for their structural development.

Low tree

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Sticking with pears

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Rood built this platform especially for removing fireblight strikes. Controls let him steer, brake, clutch, shift gears, and control acceleration. Shears or saw on a long pole are powered by air.
Richard Lehnert

There was a time

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MCP substitute studied

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Scientists at Washington State University have filed a patent application for a product that could be applied ­preharvest to pears to extend their storability as an alternative to a postharvest MCP (1-methylcyclopropene) application.

Dr. Amit Dhingra,

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What do consumers think of MCP?

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The Pear Bureau Northwest is planning a study to find out how well consumers like pears that have been treated with MCP (1-methylcyclopropene), which is sold under the brand name SmartFresh. Pears can be treated

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Problems with pear ripening

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The ripening inhibitor SmartFresh (MCP) holds promise for maintaining pear quality over a longer period of time and reducing disorders such as scald, but the pear industry reports that some treated pears won’t ripen.

Dr. Eugene

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Pear assessments drop

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Pear growers in the Pacific Northwest will pay less money to the Pear Bureau Northwest for ­winter pear promotions in the coming season.

The Pear Bureau’s board of directors has reduced its assessment rate for winter

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Pear psylla pheromone discovered

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The newly discovered pear psylla pheromone is being tested in the field to find out how attractive it is to males. This mesh sticky trap has a septa of the chemical in the middle.
CHRISTELLE GUÉDOT,

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Last Bite – A pear, by any other name

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Left: D’Anjou grows well in the Pacific Northwest’s dry climate. Right: This photo was taken at the National Clonal Germplasm Repository in Corvallis, Oregon, where varieties are grown unsprayed to reveal their natural characteristics, such

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Wide scope for rootstock research

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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,

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Cougarblight model updated

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Washington State University is working to help growers be better prepared to fight fireblight.

Washington State University’s Cougarblight model is being updated to improve its ability to predict when conditions are conducive to fireblight.

The model uses

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Organic bubble hasn’t burst

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The entry of Walmart into organic fruit retailing five years ago helped fuel the demand for organic fruit, and demand is still growing despite the economic recession, according to David Granatstein, Washington State University’s organic

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Rootstocks, varieties, and tree training

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A research and demonstration orchard near Ferrara, Italy, is a horticulturist’s dream—a 25-acre plot to study rootstocks, varieties, and training systems for pears, apples, and cherries that’s funded by a private foundation without worry of

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Pear Bureau to work closer with sales desks

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A pear industry task force is recommending that the Pear Bureau Northwest and pear shippers and marketers work more closely together when setting up retail promotions on the domestic market.

The task force was established early

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Figuring out profitability

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High yields or high prices alone are not enough to ensure that a Gala apple grower will see a profit, two Washington State University ­agricultural economists report.

Drs. Karina Gallardo and Mykel Taylor recently published a

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Maintain a hierarchy in tree framework

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The framework of these 12-year-old Packham trees (2,082 trees per hectare) on mini-Tatura is simple and very productive (55 to 61 tonnes per hectare annually, with 93 percent packout).

Our society is built on intricate hierarchical

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Pear breeding moves toward better varieties

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Richard Bell works to develop better pears with the flavor of Bartlett and resistance to fireblight and pear psylla, and more precocious.

One of the problems with pears is their lack of precocity. They stay juvenile,

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Reflective fabric = more pears

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Researchers are finding that a reflective mulch in the rows of a mature pear orchard can significantly increase yields by directing more light into the lower canopy.

We are investigating application of Extenday reflective fabric to

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Eastern growers can produce pears profitably

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When planted in the tall spindle system, high density in itself reduced tree size, and the quince rootstock at right kept trees quite small.

The market for pears in the eastern United States is good, and

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Quick Bites

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Large apple crop forecast
The Washington apple industry expects to harvest a record 108.8 million boxes of fresh apples this fall. That’s six million boxes more than during the 2009-2010 season that just ended, but only

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Pear promotions pondered

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A pear industry task force is looking at how the Pear Bureau Northwest might coordinate its domestic pear promotions with the companies supplying the pears.

The Pear Bureau works with 200 retailers around the United States

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Pear breeding north of the border

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Harovin Sundown (tested as HW614) originated from a cross of Bartlett and an unnamed U.S. selection made in 1972. The pear, which is larger than Bartlett, was named and released in 2008.

North America’s two public

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Bi-axis system fits the fruiting wall concept

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Bibaum (divided trunk) pears are grown at the Ferrara fruit research station in Italy

Fruit growers who adopt a spindle style of tree—tall, narrow cylinder shapes—believe the resulting fruiting walls will lend themselves to mechanization and

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Antibiotic on organic sunset list

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Organic tree fruit growers in the Pacific Northwest are concerned that the National Organic Standards Board might drop its approval of the antibiotic Mycoshield (oxytetracycline or tetracycline) for organic production in 2012. The product is

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Preventing pear rot

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Dr. David Sugar, plant pathologist at Oregon State University, says the nitrogen and calcium levels in the orchard can affect the potential for decay in pears after harvest.

Orchard management can play an important role in

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A remedy for blind wood

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The branches of this young Fuji tree suffer from blind wood.

Blind wood is a growth characteristic of certain fruit varieties, where buds at the basal ends of shoots remain dormant or blind. Apple varieties such

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Australia testing two new pears

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Garry Langford says testers will be licensed to grow trees for five years to produce enough pears for sampling.

Two new pear varieties from Australia are being propagated for testing in the United States.

One is an

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Drench in the orchard

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Single-bin drenching with a postharvest fungicide is being tested. Research shows that the sooner a fungicide is applied after harvest, the more effective it is in preventing rot.
DAVID SUGAR, OSU

Drenching single bins of pears with

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Fireblight without antibiotics

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Orchards that have secondary bloom or have later-blooming varieties are more at risk for fireblight infection.

Controlling fireblight without antibiotics is doable, but it requires an integrated approach combining delayed dormant copper sprays with frequent applications

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The 1-2-3 rule of pruning

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Two-year-old wood and young spurs produce the most and best Packham pears.

The largest and best quality apples and pears grow on two-year-old wood and young spurs. To develop two-year-old wood, prune trees according to the

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Last Bite

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Perham Fruit Company used these five labels during the 1920s and 1930s.

Some of the most beautiful and sought-after fruit labels that collectors desire are the old Perham labels. Illustrated here are the five original company

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Cover crops and pest control

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Does attracting natural enemies to an orchard by planting a cover crop translate to better biological control of pests in the trees? Dr. David Horton, entomologist with the U.S. Department of Agriculture in Yakima, Washington,

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Past, present, and future

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Chuck Peters designed his new pear orchard with mechanization and new technologies in mind.

It might be possible to develop apples with yet-to-be-identified health benefits, says orchardist Chuck Peters.

When Chuck Peters, a pear grower from Yakima,

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