Thinning and Growth Control of Apples Treated with BAS-125 10W

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  • 1 Dept. of Plant and Soil Sciences, Univ. of Massachusetts, Amherst, MA 01003

BAS-125 10W is a new plant growth retardant that was evaluated on `McIntosh' apples to control excessive vegetative growth. When applied at concentrations between 0 and 375 ppm, it significantly reduced terminal growth. As a result, light penetration into the tree was increased and fruit at harvest had more red color, and more were graded into the US Extra Fancy category. BAS-125 increased fruit set; thus, fruit were smaller, but firmer, at harvest. Treated fruit were firmer and had less decay following 20 weeks of regular air storage. Several different thinning strategies were employed to thin BAS-125-treated `Delicious' trees. In one experiment, the best thinning treatment was a combination spray containing 10 ppm NAA plus carbaryl at petal fall followed by 8 ppm NAA when fruit size averaged 10 mm. The best treatment in another experiment was a Wilthin application at 80% bloom followed by 8 ppm NAA plus carbaryl at petal fall. Recommendations for the successful use of BAS-125 10W in the Northeast will be discussed.

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