Good Fruit Grower

May 15

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Rears Airblast Sprayers POWERBLAST Interchangeable axial flow fans to match blade pitch and air volume to your application and horsepower. Electric fan clutch Rears Constant Velocity Hitch powers through 90° turns Rears centrifugal pump and Rears gearbox: manu- factured by Rears for more than 40 years. Simple pressure adjustment to maintain accurate calibration in different row spacings. Jim Schupp (on tractor) took an active role in evaluating the Darwin blossom thinner and considers it a key to peach profitability. open-vase system, it cost just under $20 per acre to do follow-up thinning by hand—and no ladders or platforms were used. Trees planted in the upright style of perpendicular V (two scaffolds), quad V (four scaffolds), or hex V (six scaf- folds) cost around $40 an acre to thin if ladders were needed, but less than $20 when platforms were used. The platforms completely offset the disadvantage of the taller trees. Higher yields In an experiment now in its sixth year, Schupp is com- paring the profitability of four different orchard systems: perpendicular V, quad V, hex V, and open vase. Here are some of his conclusions. Yields have been the lowest with the open-vase system (about half of the best-yielding system). But fruit from open-vase system have been larger. "Perhaps we need to prune the V trees harder to elim- inate some of the small fruit," he said. "Perhaps we have to adjust fertilizer practices, or perhaps we need to adjust the target goal down to growing 500 bushels per acre. We have a lifetime of experience with the open vase system. We are good at it." Another possibility is to add irrigation. A trickle irriga- tion system was added last year, but its effects have not been studied. Irrigation is seldom used in the Northeast. One problem with the open vase was the 14- by 18- foot spacing took much longer to fill than narrower spac- ings. After five years, the open-vase trees had not filled their space, so he expects yields will continue to rise. The open vase was planted at a density of 173 trees per acre, the lowest tree density, and thus was the lowest-cost system to establish. Costs and returns were similar among the four V sys- tems. More trees cost more to plant, but filled their space faster and produced earlier. The perpendicular V was planted at 5- by 18-feet (484 trees per acre); the quad V at 7- by 18-feet (346 trees per acre); and the hex V at 10- by 18-feet (484 trees per acre). Their ranking in order of profitability, high to low, was hex V, quad V, perpendicular V, and open vase. "All these systems are winners," Schupp said, "but some were better than others. While all four systems generated positive returns, the Vs were better." Key advantages of the high-density systems were early yields, simple pruning, and the ability to adjust to mechanization—both platforms and the Darwin blossom thinner. The key disadvantages to high-density systems is tree height, requiring ladders or platforms, and somewhat smaller fruit. • 400 gallon wheel-well Pulblast • 52" outside tire width w/11Lx15 tires • adjustable width wheel centers Towers bring the nozzle closer to the spray target. Tower height and profiles to match your application. Tune air volume: adjustable air doors independently control target zones Match Rears' aggressive air delivery engineering to your application with Vertical Wall, Over-the-Row, or Grape Elbow towers. 15° CHERRYBLOWER This is a time tested design for a wide range of applications. Automatic Rate Controller Option • Enter different row spacings: the controller automatically maintains your rate per acre. • Compensates for changes in ground speed. 400 gallon TTN profile Powerblast Variable pitch fans available in 28" & 36" dia. 100 - 600 gallon units with tank profiles for your application. Rears Constant Velocity Hitch available for most Pul-Blast models Piston actuated diaphragm pump or Rears centrifugal pump. Agricultural Equipment Dealer information 800.547.8925 GOOD FRUIT GROWER MAY 15, 2012 41 made in usausa made in photo by richard lehnert PULBLAST Heavy Gauge Stainless Steel Construction Spray tank and all tank hardware Tower casement, shrouds, steps Manifolds, louvers, air doors Fan and blower housing

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