Intensive type plum plantations in Latvia
In the northern part of Europe, plum orchards are not found in large areas. In central Europe, they are used more for production of fresh fruits than for processing. Latvian consumers use plums both for fresh consumption and for various processed products. Intensive plantings are required to obtain a high-quality harvest and a rapid increase in yield. In 2012, an experiment including 5 cultivars, with tree crown formation in the Hekaespalier and spindle crown support systems was planted at the Institute of Horticulture, which already gave significantly faster and higher quality yield in the first years of growth compared with the control of a flat combined type of crown. The trial included cultivars Jubileum and Victoria and new cultivars selected in Latvia Ance, Adelyn and Sonora. P. cerasifera rootstock was used. The average yield was evaluated from the sixth to the ninth year of growth.Significantly higher yields were obtained from trees in the support systems. In the control cultivar Victoria had an average yield of 9.4 kg tree‑1, 10.6 kg in the Hekaespalier system. For the more productive cultivar Ance the control had a yield of 13.2 kg, the Hekaespalier system 16 kg. The results of this experiment gave an impulse to test the possibilities of testing these systems in different regions of Latvia. Since Latvia is close to the Baltic Sea, the climate is very different in its coastal and central parts. In order to provide consumers with high-quality fruit, it is important to create local plantations in the regions. In 2018, following the example of the Horticultural Institute, experimental plantations were established in three different places in Latvia with the aim to find out whether it is possible, using intensive crown formation technologies, obtain a high-quality crop with integrated and organic management methods.
Grāvīte, I., Dēķena, D., Kaufmane, E. and Ikase, L. (2021). Intensive type plum plantations in Latvia. Acta Hortic. 1322, 221-228
P. domestica L., Heka espalier, spindle system, cultivars