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- Author or Editor: J. M. Welles x
Hand thinning during late June drop increased fruit size and improved quality of ‘Stanley’ plum as indexed by soluble solids and color development. Crop load within the range of 200 to 990 g of mature fruit per cm2 trunk cross-sectional area was negatively correlated with fruit size, soluble solids and color. The percentage of mature fruits with cheek diameter less than 35 mm increased as crop load increased. Total flower buds and flowers per spur, and flowers per flower bud, were not significantly affected by fruit load in the range of 0.5 to 2.0 fruits per spur the previous season. However, a weak negative relationship was found between fruits per spur and flower buds produced per spur with a wider range (0 to 8 fruits/spur) in fruit load.
A model that computes orchard foliage temperature distributions in a heated orchard is described. The energy balance for individual foliage elements is computed, considering thermal radiation from the environment, plus the radiative and convective effects of an array of orchard heaters. The model is used to analyze various heater configurations and densities, and to determine rates of fuel consumption required for frost protection. The results indicate that radiative heating of the foliage by the heaters is as important as convective heating of the air, even though only one-fifth of the fuel contributes to radiation emission. Further, results suggest several simple passive methods for increasing the efficiency of orchard heating.
A newly described bacterial disease of ‘Honey Dew’ melons is caused by a strain of Erwinia herbicola. The disease first was found on ‘Honey Dew’ melons imported from Ecuador, and subsequently on melons from Guatemala, Venezuela, and California. The disease produces firm, tan to brown, slowly developing lesions that principally affect the rind tissue. The bacterium isolated from a California ‘Honey Dew’ melon was much more virulent and potentially more damaging than isolates from the other sources. We propose bacterial brown spot as the name of the disease.
Previous studies with a variety of tree species have demonstrated enhanced flowering, fruit set, and yield with foliar boron (B) applications. The effects of foliar-applied B on pecan [Carya illinoinensis (Wangenh.) K. Koch] in the southeastern United States are poorly understood. This study was undertaken to investigate the effect of foliar B application on leaf tissue B concentration, fruit retention, and kernel quality of pecan. Controlled pollination studies showed no effect of B on fruit retention of ‘Stuart’ pecan. Tissue B concentration, fruit retention, and percent kernel of ‘Desirable’ pecan were occasionally enhanced by both two and five B applications made before and through the pollination window in multiple studies over 3 years. As long as leaf B is within the recommended sufficiency range, timing of foliar B application during the critical prepollination period appears to be more valuable for pecan production than are increasing leaf B levels. Given the production enhancements observed here, and the low cost of B fertilizers, the practice of foliar B application merits consideration as a component of pecan orchard management when tank-mixed with normal prepollination pesticide or nutrient sprays.
Production of high tunnel tomatoes and snapdragons was evaluated over a 2-year period at the Wiregrass Experiment Station, in southeastern Alabama. `BHN 640', `Florida 91', `Sunleaper', and `Carolina Gold', were evaluated in early Spring 2004. Results indicated that `BHN 640' outperformed `Florida 91' and `Carolina Gold' in early production of high tunnel grown tomatoes. A late Fall 2005 study examined `BHN 640' and `Florida 91'. Results indicated that `BHN 640' was superior to `Florida 91' in total marketable fruit. Season extension of both spring and fall tomato production were accomplished. A planting date study was completed in the early Spring 2005. The following four planting dates were evaluated: 31 Jan., 17 Feb., 4 Mar., and 25. Mar 2005. Wind damage to the high tunnel caused some mortality; however, the two earliest planting dates (31 Jan. and 17 Feb. 2005) produced over 10 lbs. of marketable tomatoes per plant. These were both superior to the last planting date of 25 Mar 2005. Cut snapdragons were evaluated for suitable colored mulch (red, white, or blue) and varieties for summer (`Opus Yellow', `Opus Rose', `Monaco Red', and `Potomac Early White') and fall (`Apollo Purple', `Apollo Yellow', `Monaco Red', `Monaco Rose', and `Potomac Early Orange') production. Results indicated that inflorescence length was affected by the color of mulch. The red mulch had increased inflorescence length compared to the white in Summer 2005. The Fall 2005 study revealed that white mulch had longer inflorescence length than the red or blue mulch. Some varietal differences were observed. The `Apollo Purple' had longer stem lengths than all other varieties for the fall study. The summer study revealed that `Opus Yellow' had longer inflorescence lengths than all others but stem lengths were all similar.