High density production systems for apples (AP432)
This is a final research report from Hort Innovation’s historical archives. Please note that as these reports may date back as far as the 1990s, the content and recommendations within them may be superseded by more recent research.
What was it all about?
High density planting systems needed to be developed for the higher light intensity situations found in Australian apple growing areas. Technology for the intensification of apple production was not available in Australia. Through exploiting European technology, this project developed and evaluated high density planting systems that provided higher yields per hectare and a higher percentage of apples of good quality. High density planting systems using tree densities of between 2000 trees/ha and 5000 trees/ha were shown overseas to have the potential to increase the efficiency of apple production. These systems, however, required local modification of cultural practices such as pruning techniques, cultivars and machinery use. To achieve the increase of efficiency of higher density apple production, four high density bed systems were planted on dwarf rootstocks were compared with commercial central leader systems. Fruit yield and quality was assessed. The nutritional and irrigation requirements of different systems was determined; pest and disease was monitored to determine the efficiency of integrated pest management systems. Costs and timing of labour were recorded for assessment of the economic efficiency of the different systems.
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This project was funded by Hort Innovation (then Horticulture Australia Limited), Horticultural Research and Development Corporation with the voluntary financial support of the apple and pear industry.
Copyright © Horticulture Innovation Australia Limited 1999. The Final Research Report (in part or as whole) cannot be reproduced, published, communicated or adapted without the prior written consent of Hort Innovation (except as may be permitted under the Copyright Act 1968 (Cth)).