Good Fruit Grower

February 15

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Page 30 of 39 Good Fruit Grower FEBRUARY 15, 2016 31 February February 17-18: Northwest Pear Research Review, Confluence Technology Center, Wenatchee, Washington, | For information call Kathy Coffey at (509) 665-8271 ext. 2 or email February 17-18: Food Processing Expo 2016, Sacramento, California, February 24: BC Tree Fruit Horticultural Symposium, Kelowna, British Columbia, Canada. For information, email Kelly Berringer at March March 1-2: Fruit Ripening & Ethylene Management Workshop, Davis, California, UC Davis Campus, Education/fruitripening. March 14: New Technology in Apple Scab and Fire Blight Management, Hyde Park, New York, Good to Go For a complete listing of upcoming events, check the Calendar at Fresh Pear Committee nominations P ear growers will elect nominees for positions on the Fresh Pear Committee on March 4 in Medford, Oregon. The committee is responsible for the collection of assessments for research and promotion and advertising of all pears marketed in domestic and export markets. Growers will vote on the FPC handler position for the Medford district, a position currently held by Ron Meyer. The first alternate is John Neilsen, and the second alternate is Doug Lowry. Elections for this position will be held at 9 a.m., March 4, at Naumes Inc., 2 W. Barnett Street, in Medford. would help slow down tree growth. On trees that have not reached the top wire, at least the top half should be defruited to stimulate more growth, he suggested. Uniformity of trees will become crit- ical as the industry adopts robotic har- vesters within the next few years, he said. "Consistency of the canopy is going to be a big factor in being able to automate successfully and have the productivity of the machinery at a point where you can make money as a grower." To avoid blind wood, Auvil recom- mends cutting all the feathers back to two or four buds at planting and heading the leader. Leaving a branch to grow 18 to 24 inches long with much of it blind wood doesn't help the grower, and, for automated harvesting, branches will need to be no longer than 9 to 12 inches anyway. Large caliper wood also needs to be removed as the trees grow. Auvil said yield expectations for the modern orchard are 80 to 100 bins per acre, and he stressed the importance of building a trellis system that can support that load. For example, anchor posts should be the same distance from the bottom of the end post as the trellis is high. So, if the trellis is 11 feet high, the anchor should be 11 feet from the end post. And the tension on the trellis wires should prevent the wires being moved more than half an inch in any direction with a reasonable amount of force. About 100 acres of trellised orchard fell to the ground this year in the Columbia Basin, Auvil noted, and it was not even a large crop year. Trellises with wires that can be easily moved are vulnerable, par- ticularly in wet soil and windy conditions. Rootstock trial The rootstock trial, planted last spring, includes Malling-Merton 106, M.9 T330, M.9 Nic 29, Budagovsky 9, and the Geneva rootstocks G.969, G.210, G.41, G.935, G.214, G.11, and G.890. After the first growing season, trees on MM.106 were the most vigorous, followed by G.210 and G.890. Trees on Bud 9 were the smallest, followed by G.41 and M.9 T337. Those on M.9 Nic 29 were intermediate. Auvil said, in his opinion, G.890 is tough to beat for Honeycrisp on a replant site. Geneva rootstocks have the advan- tage over Malling rootstocks of being resistant to fire blight and Phytophthora, tolerant of replant disease, and, in most cases, resistant to woolly apple aphid. Taber said some of the Geneva root- stocks already look promising in compar- ison to M.9 Nic 29. "G.939 and .890 look pretty interesting from that trial." • 360.333.4044 Casey Schoenberger Mount Vernon, WA Dramm Corporation Manitowoc, WI • U.S.A. Extremely high levels of available Calcium & Phosphorus Natural Fish Fertilizers for Organic & Sustainable Crop Production BERRIES VINEYARDS ORCHARDS

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