David C. Ferree, S. C. Myers, James R. Schupp
The vast majority of research directed at controlling tree growth has focused on either genetic means or on cultural practices directed at the above-ground portions of the tree. The genetic approach has successfully reduced tree size through introduction of spur-type or columnar growth habit cultivars and through a range of size-controlling apple rootstocks. However, proven size-controlling rootstocks have not been developed for crops other than apple, and modification of cultivar habits also has been limited (Hansche and Beres, 1980; Scorza, 1984). Cultural techniques such as pruning, bending, girdling, close spacing, bark inversion, and growth regulating chemicals have been applied to trees to modify growth and are covered in other papers of this symposium.

In this paper the recent results of cultural techniques directed at controlling tree growth through modification of the root system will be reviewed. In 1984, the effects of root pruning and root restriction on plants were reviewed (Geisler and Ferree, 1984a; Ferree and Geisler, 1984), and emphasis in this review will be on results of studies since that time.

Ferree, David C., Myers, S. C. and Schupp, James R. (1992). ROOT PRUNING AND ROOT RESTRICTION OF FRUIT TREES-CURRENT REVIEW. Acta Hortic. 322, 153-166
DOI: 10.17660/ActaHortic.1992.322.17

Acta Horticulturae