Plant dry matter production is proportional to light interception, but fruit production does not always increase with increased light interception. Seasonal daily patterns of light interception by cling peach trees planted in four different planting density/training systems were obtained using a Decagon ceptometer. The High Density V system (1196 trees/ha) intercepted significantly more light than the KAC V and Cordon systems (918 trees/ha). The Vase system (299 trees/ha) intercepted significantly less light than the other systems. Response surfaces using a quadratic model with interactions for time of day and day of year explained 84% to 91% of the variance in the data sets for each training system. Crop yields per acre were greatest for the High Density V, followed by KAC V, Cordon, and Vase, corresponding to the light interception data. A carbon budget model, which incorporated canopy photosynthesis, respiration, and carbon partitioning based on organ growth potentials, was used to simulate seasonal patterns of carbon assimilation, crop dry weights, and individual fruit dry weights.
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