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Cultivar and rootstock influence fruit size, red color, packout, and dollar value of crop in 1990 NC-140 apple rootstock trial



Cultivar and rootstock influence fruit size, red color, packout, and dollar value of crop in 1990 NC-140 apple rootstock trial



Hortscience 36(3): 460-461



An NC-140 apple cultivar/rootstock trial was conducted near Blacksburg, VA from 1990-1999. Cultivars were 'Golden Delicious', 'Jonagold', 'Empire', 'Rome', 'Stayman', and 'York'. Rootstocks were Mark, Ottawa 3 (0.3), Budagovsky 9 (B. 9), Malling 9 EMLA (M.9EMLA) and Malling 26 EMLA (M.26EMLA). There were six single-tree replications in a randomized complete-block design. Trees were spaced at 2.5 X 5.0 m, and were trained as modified slender spindles. Support was provided by a 3 m bamboo stake supported by a single wire at 2.5 m. When judged to be commercially mature, all trees of each cultivar were harvested in a single harvest. Fruits from individual trees were sized with a chain sizer (1992-94) or a weight sizer (1995-99). In some years and with selected cultivars, a 20 fruit random sample was taken for visual estimation of % red color. Our objective was to evaluate the cultivar and rootstock effects on fruit size, color, and packout. Over the 8 years of this part of the study, there were very few significant cultivar X rootstock interactions so main effects are presented. Fruit size was largest for 'Rome' and 'Jonagold', intermediate for 'Stayman' and 'York', and smallest for 'Golden Delicious' and 'Empire'. Trees on M.26EMLA and M.9EMLA produced somewhat larger fruit than trees on Mark and O.3; fruit from trees on B.9 were intermediate. Red color was affected by rootstock, but the effect varied among cultivars. Projected dollar value/tree based on yield, fruit size, and red color was greatest for trees on M.26EMLA and M.9EMLA, intermediate for trees on O.3, and lowest for trees on Mark and B.9.

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