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  • Author or Editor: Doug S. Foulk x
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This decision case concerns the need to make management decisions in a commercial apple orchard planted largely with `Haralson,' a russet-susceptible cultivar. The growers described in this situation had to decide whether applying GA4+7 for russet suppression was appropriate for their operation, given the financial, cultural and pesticide issues that required addressing. The case is intended for use in fruit production or other intermediate to advanced undergraduate horticulture courses and assumes a knowledge of basic perennial-crop production practices. Students assume the role of a decisionmaker in the complicated issue of orchard management.

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`Haralson,' the most widely-grown cultivar in Minnesota, is highly susceptible to russetting and cracking in many orchards. Because wax platelet arrangement has been proposed as a cause for russettting in `Golden Delicious' apples, we examined the wax platelet arrangement of `Haralson' apples. When compared to the wax platelet arrangement found on the russet-susceptible `Golden Delicious,' and on `McIntosh,' a cultivar which does not russet in our region, `Haralson' platelets were large and upright in orientation, more numerous than found on `Golden Delicious,' but unlike the smaller, more granular platelets found on `McIntosh.' In a concurrent study, we made four GA,,, (Provide) applications, at petal fall and at p.f. +10, 20, and 30 days. At harvest, the treated and untreated blocks of trees were examined for incidence of russet, 25-ct. wt., and total yield per tree. Treated trees produced a greater number of fruit of slightly larger size and with reduced incidence of russet than untreated trees in the study.

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Horticulture students in an entry-level course (Plant Propagation) and an upper-level course (Small Fruit Crop Production) were assigned brief writing tasks at the end of each class period based upon that day's lecture. Student writing was intended to be expressive in nature, i.e., for the author's use only. For the first five minutes of each class period, students divided into small groups to discuss possible responses to the previous day's task and to generate questions related to the task topic. The class then reconvened as a whole for a question-and-answer session before lecture was resumed. Students collected their writings in a workbook which they turned in for experimental evaluation only at the end of the quarter. When compared to previous and concurrent sections of the same courses, students engaging in the writing tasks asked more numerous and thoughtful questions in class and demonstrated increased ability to perform well on complex exam questions requiring integration and synthesis of information.

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Horticulture students in an entry-level course (plant propagation) and an upper-level course (small fruit crop production) were assigned brief lecture-based writing tasks at the end of each class period. For the first 5 minutes of each subsequent class period, students divided into small groups to discuss their responses to the previous day s task and to generate questions related to the task topic. The class then reconvened as a whole for a question-and-answer session before the lecture was resumed. Students collected their task responses in a workbook that they turned in for experimental evaluation at the end of the quarter. When compared to previous and concurrent sections of the same courses, students engaging in the writing tasks more frequently posed questions in class, posed questions of increased complexity, and demonstrated improved ability to perform well on complex exam questions requiring integration and synthesis of information.

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