Testing a Power Duster for Pollination of `McIntosh' Apples

in HortScience
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  • 1 Highmoor Farm, Univ. of Maine, Monmouth, ME 04259

This study was undertaken to test the efficacy of a power duster for supplemental pollination of `McIntosh' apple trees, where lack of nearby pollinizing cultivars was thought to be a limiting factor to productivity. The pollen duster was ineffective in increasing fruit set, fruit size, or seed number in fruits on limbs that were covered with spun-bonded rowcover material prior to bloom. Applying supplemental pollen to open-pollinated `McIntosh' trees had no effect on fruit set, yield, fruit size, or seed number, regardless of pollen dose, timing, or number of applications. Dispersal of supplemental pollen with a power duster appears to be an inefficient method of pollinating apple trees.

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