Cold Protection of Kiwifruit Plants with Trunk Wraps and Microsprinkler Irrigation

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  • 1 Department of Horticulture and Alabama Agricultural Experiment Station, Auburn University, AL 36849
  • 2 Department of Plant Pathology and Alabama Agricultural Experiment Station, Auburn University, AL 36849
  • 3 Alabama Agricultural Experiment Station, Auburn University, AL 36849

Own-rooted, 4-year-old kiwifruit plants [Actinidia deliciosa (A. Chev.) C.F. Liang et R. Ferguson var. deliciosa] protected by a Styrofoam insulation wrap with a water-filled pouch (Reese clip-on trunk wrap) or by microsprinkler irrigation sustained less freeze injury than unprotected plants under field conditions at temperatures as low as -17.8C. Trunk splitting occurred on the plants, but no injury was detected on canes, buds, or shoots in the canopy of the plants. Unprotected plants had more trunk splitting and at greater heights than protected plants. New canes developed from suck- ers of cold-injured plants and developed a trellised canopy the following season.

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