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Apple Thinning Strategies 2021

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May 8, 2021 - Author: , and

Thinning is the most difficult, most important, yet necessary practice a grower must perform each year. Making a mistake will compromise both this year’s crop and next year’s crop. Over-cropping and undercropping will reduce income for a block for multiple years. Today, with a more scientific approach to thinning we can achieve successful consistent annual croploads.

A firm understanding of the thinning materials, thinning stages, the natural background sensitivity to thinning sets the foundation for successful thinning. Thinning begins with pruning in the dormant season to reduce budload. Next, a precise, data-driven approach, including Nibble Thinning and Precision Thinning, can be used to guide thinning decisions. Models including the Fruitset Model and the Carbohydrate Model provide guidance based on block data and environmental conditions to achieve better thinning results. We review each of these concepts, approaches, and tools in this guide.

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Tags: agriculture, apple management, apples, apple thinning, fruit & nuts, msu extension


Authors

Anna Wallis

Anna Wallis
wallisa2@msu.edu

Philip Schwallier
schwalli@msu.edu

Amy Irish-Brown

Amy Irish-Brown
irisha@msu.edu

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