Hedgerow Orientation Affects Canopy Exposure, Flowering, and Fruiting of `Anjou' Pear Trees

in HortScience
Authors:
Habib KhemiraDepartment of Horticulture, Oregon State University, Corvallis, OR 97331

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P.B. LombardDepartment of Horticulture, Oregon State University, Corvallis, OR 97331

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David SugarDepartment of Horticulture, Oregon State University, Corvallis, OR 97331

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Anita N. AzarenkoDepartment of Horticulture, Oregon State University, Corvallis, OR 97331

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Mature hedgerows of `Anjou' pear (Pyrus communis L.) trees, planted north(N)-south (S) or east (E)-west (W), were used to study the effect of hedgerow orientation on fruiting and canopy exposure. In 1990, flower bud density tended to be lower on the E-W rows, especially on their N sides. Fruit set (FS) was highest on the S side of E-W rows and lowest on the N side, while the E and W sides of the N-S rows were intermediate. Crop density (CD) had a similar pattern as FS, with more fruit on the S than on the N side of the E-W rows. CD was more evenly distributed between the sides on the N-S hedgerows. Differences in FS and CD between sides were related to different levels of sunlight interception. Light exposure was lowest on the N sides of the E-W rows and highest on the S sides throughout the growing season and especially toward the equinoxes. Increased exposure to the sun on the S and W sides late in the season led to more fruit with solar injury. Fruit from E–W rows were larger and less firm. Accumulated yields over 11 years showed a 21.4% increase in the N-S rows over those of the E-W rows.

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