Submitted to: Journal of American Pomological Society
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 3/25/2007
Publication Date: 4/1/2007
Citation: Crassweller, R., Mcnew, R., Greene, D., Miller, S.S. 2007. Performance of apple cultivars in the 1999 NE-183 regional project planting. I. Growth and yield characteristics. Journal of American Pomological Society. 61:84-96. Interpretive Summary: The objective and systematic evaluation of apple cultivars across many planting sites in North America would provide valuable assistance to growers in selecting new cultivars to plant. In addition, consumers would be able to make informed purchasing choices if provided with fruit quality descriptions. A regional project was initiated in 1995 to evaluate apple cultivars on Malling 9 rootstock planted at 19 sites across North America. The project was expanded in 1999 with the addition of 23 apple cultivars. The present paper presents the results for growth and yield of the 23 cultivars at 17 of the planting sites. The results support the need for widespread systematic evaluation of new apple cultivars to support future commercial planting. Information developed by this regional project will provide a valuable resource for cultivar selection for tree fruit extension, fruit consultants and fruit growers.
Technical Abstract: A multi-site experiment to evaluate the performance of apple cultivars was established in 1999 with twenty-three different cultivars. The purpose of the experiment was to evaluate new and promising apple cultivars in a range of geographical and climatic areas within North America. All trees were propagated on M.9 and minimally pruned to encourage early bearing. ‘Pinova’ and ‘Cripp’s Pink’ had the most flower clusters of all the cultivars in the first year after planting. At the end of the fifth growing season ‘Cripp’s Pink’ were the largest trees while ‘NY 65707-19’ and ‘Minnewashta’ were the smallest. ‘CQR10T17’ and ‘Golden Delicious’ had the greatest cumulative yield. ‘Pinova’ had the highest cumulative yield efficiency (cumulative kg fruit/cm2 2004 trunk cross-sectional area). ‘Chinook’ and ‘Silken’ had the highest mean number of fruit per year. The largest fruit were produced on ‘NY 75907-49’. Three cultivars ‘NJ 90’, ‘NY 65707-19’ and ‘NY 75907-49’ had preharvest fruit drop in excess of 20%. ‘Chinook’ had the heaviest annual crop load but also had the smallest fruits. ‘Minnewashta’ and ‘Silken’ were the earliest blooming cultivars while ‘Runkel’ bloomed the latest. Across all sites the average days from bloom to harvest was 184 days for ‘Cripp’s Pink’ which makes it the latest cultivar to mature and probably not suited to be grown in more northern regions of the continent.