EVALUATION OF TRAINING/PRUNING SYSTEMS FOR PEACH, PLUM AND NECTARINE TREES IN CALIFORNIA
Three stone fruit cultivars, ‘Flavorcrest’ peach (early-maturing), ‘Royal Giant’ nectarine (late-maturing) and Simka plum (midseason), were planted and trained in four training/pruning systems: central leader (2.0 x 5.5 m, 909 trees/ha), perpendicular V (2.0 x 5.5 m, 909 trees/ha), parallel “V” (3.0 x 5.5 m, 598 trees/ha) and standard open vase (6.1 x 5.5 m, 298 trees/ha), beginning in Jan. 1982 at the Univ. of California, Kearney Agricultural Center, Parlier, Calif. With peach and nectarine, early-yield advantages of the high-density central leader and parallel V systems were short lived compared to the open vase system, and only the more open, perpendicular V system maintained yields equal to or higher than the traditional vase system. With ‘Simka’ plum, the central leader system maintained an edge as the highest cropping system because of the physiological growth characteristics of plum. However, the real advantages and disadvantages of the high density systems are probably less related to crop yield than to orchard management considerations such as: tree structural strength, uniformity, access to ladder work and simplicity of cultural operations.
DeJong, T.M., Day, K.R. and Doyle, J.F. (1992). EVALUATION OF TRAINING/PRUNING SYSTEMS FOR PEACH, PLUM AND NECTARINE TREES IN CALIFORNIA. Acta Hortic. 322, 99-106