High-Density Planting Systems And Rootstocks For Sweet Cherries In The Northeast

TERENCE ROBINSON, POLIANA FRANCESCATTO AND JAUME LORDAN

Published on: July 8

Introduction

Dwarfing cherry rootstocks have allowed new possibilities for developing high-density sweet cherry (Prunus aviumL.) orchards with smaller trees that are more precocious and productive and can either be covered with rain exclusion shelters or high tunnels to prevent rain cracking (Lang, 2005; Robinson et al., 2004). Several high-density training systems have been developed for sweet cherries, giving fruit growers many options for choosing a planting density, rootstock and training protocol. The objective of this project was to compare high-density production systems on both standard and dwarfing rootstocks for both self-fertile and self-infertile sweet cherries and determine the effect of training system and rootstock on yield, fruit size, fruit quality and crop value.

2010 NC-140 Cherry Systems and Rootstock Trial (Regina):

A field trial was planted in May 2010, at Geneva, New York with ‘Regina’ on Gi.3, Gi.5, and Gi.6. Each cultivar/rootstock combination was planted in four training systems: Tall Spindle-5 X 12 ft (771 trees/acre), Modified Spanish Bush KGB - 5 X 12 ft (771 trees/acre), Upright Fruiting Offshoots UFO - 5 X 12 ft (771 trees/acre), and Super Spindle – 2.5 X 12 ft (1542 trees/acre).

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