Good Fruit Grower

September 1

Issue link:

Contents of this Issue


Page 29 of 39

30 SEPTEMBER 2015 GOOD FRUIT GROWER A t Van Acker Farms in Williamson, New York, the owners are transitioning from growing apples for processing to growing the much more desirable fresh-market varieties like Honeycrisp and SnapDragon. Lots of growers are doing it, and some are experi- encing serious problems. These weak-growing varieties don't perform well on commonly used root- stocks like Malling 9 and Budagovsky 9. But research at Van Acker Farms will help them and other growers identify more suitable rootstocks. The Van Acker farm- ing history began in 1913 when Dan and Kathy's great-grandfather, Peter Van Acker, immigrated from Holland and purchased a 20-acre farm. Peter's son Henry grew the farm to 75 acres. In 1957, Henry's son Ronald, after serving time in the military, added more acreage on which he planted not only apples but also tart cherries, peaches, and pears. Ronald's son and daughter, Daniel and Kathy, now work about 400 acres in the towns of Williamson and Sodus. In 2009, Daniel Van Acker and his sister, Kathy Orbaker, donated land for a ten-year study of the per- formance of the Honeycrisp variety on a wide range of Geneva rootstocks. "It seemed like a good reason for a rootstock trial," Orbaker said, considering how many growers are planting Honeycrisp. "We care for the trees, and we get to see them growing on our farm." After six years, the results are already dramatic. The best performing rootstock has produced more than three times the cumulative yield of trees growing on M.9 Nic 29 and has reduced biennial bearing by half. Researchers made a big deal of the results during the Lake Ontario Summer Fruit Tour. Cornell pomologist Dr. Terence Robinson and fruit extension specialist Mario Miranda Sazo were there to present the data, and so were the current rootstock breeder, Dr. Gennaro Fazio, and his predecessor, Dr. James Cummins. Retired since 1993 and now living in Knoxville, Tennessee, Cummins spent time in the orchard talking about the roots of the rootstock breeding program he started while he was a professor at Cornell University in Geneva, New York. They call him "the father of the Geneva rootstocks." Designer ROOTSTOCKS 'Best' rootstock is one that fits your orchard and the variety you are planting. by Richard Lehnert 10kg per tree (22 lbs.) 20kg per tree (45 lbs.) 30kg per tree (66 lbs.) 40kg per tree (88 lbs.) 50kg per tree (110 lbs.) Cumulative yield 0.1 0 0.2 0.3 0.4 0.5 0.6 0.7 0.8 0.9 1 Biennial Bearing Index (0=Annual, 1=Biennial) CG.4001 G.890 CG.5257 G.30 G.41 CG.3902 CG.5087 CG.4004 MARK CG.4814 CG.6006 CG.5202 CG.3007 M.9 Nic 29 Which rootstock is best for Honeycrisp? Van Acker Rootstock Trial with Honeycrisp, planted 2009, data through the sixth leaf. CG.4001 G.890 CG.5257 G.30 G.41 CG.3902 CG.5087 CG.4004 MARK CG.4814 CG.6006 CG.5202 CG.3007 M.9 Nic 29 SOURCE: CORNELL UNIVERSITY JARED JOHNSON/GOOD FRUIT GROWER Supporting your Food Safety Program since 1978 ISO 17025 Accredited HACCP HARPC FSMA GMP SSOP EMP RA GFSI - the Fresh Pack alphabet soup! HACCP HARPC FSMA GMP SSOP EMP RA GFSI - the Fresh Pack alphabet soup! Call Laura at 1-800-545-4206 EMP RA GFSI - the Fresh Pack alphabet soup! alphabet soup! alphabet soup! alphabet soup! alphabet soup! Put your food safety goggles on "to Search and Destroy". Smart sampling plans conserve resources. You can trust us to select approved methods, provide qualified staff and reliable results. Toll-Free: 877-552-4828 909-464-1373 • Fax: 909-464-1603 For your nearest dealer, contact: Quick and economical, this long- lasting dripline holder can be installed in seconds. The built-in saddle prevents water flow restric- tion. Available in 1/2" and 7/8" sizes. Patent No. 4,615,140 AgLok is a universal agricultural fastener designed for your vineyard and orchard tying and training needs. The AgLok comes in 11.5" strips, 150' belt-mounted boxes, and 500' spools. DRIPLOK™ AGLOK™ DripLok and AgLok ad.qxp_Layout 1 12/1/14 11:29 AM Page 1

Articles in this issue

Links on this page

Archives of this issue

view archives of Good Fruit Grower - September 1