`Empire' Apple Responses to Fruit-thinning Chemicals

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  • 1 Dept. of Fruit & Vegetable Science, Cornell Univ., Ithaca, NY 14583.

Effects of NAA at 5, 10, and 15 ppm, Accel at 50, 75, and 100 ppm, NAA at 7.5 ppm plus carbaryl at 600 ppm, and a nontreated control on fruit set, fruit size, length–diameter ratio, seed numbers per fruit, and total yield of fruit were evaluated during the 1994 season. All treatments were applied to 10-year-old `Empire'/M.9/MM.111 trees as dilute sprays at a rate of 935 liters·ha–1 with an airblast sprayer on 3 June. King fruit measured 9–11 mm in diameter at time of application. Fruit set (fruits per 100 blossom clusters) was reduced significantly by Accel at 50 ppm (17%) and by NAA plus carbaryl (26%) in comparison with the nontreated control. Total yield of fruit was increased by all treatments; however, fruit from trees treated with NAA plus carbaryl was significantly larger than that from all other treatments. Percentages of small fruit, <108 g, were reduced by all treatments. Percentage of fruit ≥ 153 g was increased significantly only by NAA plus carbaryl. Length–diameter ratios and numbers of fully developed seeds per fruit were not influenced significantly by treatments. NAA at rates of 5, 10, and 15 ppm, or Accel at 50, 75, or 100 ppm, were less effective than a combination of NAA at 7.5 ppm plus carbaryl at 600 ppm in reducing fruit set and in affecting fruit size or fruit size distribution.

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