[NAFEX] Apple bagging report from Minneapolis, MN (also pears and plums)

list at ginda.us list at ginda.us
Thu Oct 28 23:39:28 EDT 2004

All these bagging reports are very exciting.  If my apples ever flower, 
I think I will give it a try.  Thanks to your experience, I think I 
will not try to bag my apricots.


On Oct 28, 2004, at 11:31 PM, Nathan Torgerson wrote:

> This year I bagged apples on three different trees.  These were fairly 
> young semi-dwarf trees, the fourth fruit season for the Zestar and 
> Fireside, the first year for the Honeycrisp (finally!).
> Bagging was completed on June 6th. (Zestar: 102 apples; Honeycrisp: 
> 96; Fireside: 47). I used clear sandwich bags with twist ties. I 
> averaged 60 apples an hour and thinned the tree to one apple per 
> cluster while bagging. I left 6 apples unbagged on the Zestar and 
> Honeycrisp as a control. After June drop was complete (June 25th), I 
> had 17 bagged Firesides left, 62 Zestars, and 69 Honeycrisp.  No 
> spraying was done on any of the trees.
> During the summer, about a half dozen apple bags started to collect 
> rain water inside the bags, so I cut holes in the corners of those 
> bags. 
>  Zestar apples don't have a very long stem, so the twist tie is 
> sitting tight against the apple by harvest time.
>  At Harvest, there were a few apples that had been attacked by birds.  
> The Zestar bagged apples were 80% blemish free.  There were 2 that 
> definitely looked like apple maggots (must have got to the apples 
> before I got them bagged. One apple was being occupied by ants. (I 
> must have tied the twist-tie a little too loose on a few of them.)  
> The Zestar control apples were seriously malformed by apple maggots. 
>  The Honeycrisp apples were about 90% blemish free.  On this tree, the 
> control apples were fairly clean too, only one had apple maggots.
> The fireside tree itself wasn't doing so hot,  so I replaced it with a 
> new one, replanting it outside the deer fence.  I got four good apples 
> off of it, with the rest disappearing, bags and all.
> The Zestar apples may have been picked a few days later than they 
> should have been(September 1st, after half of them fell off the tree 
> the night before), but they stored well for 1 month at 32 deg and were 
> fairly high quality. A few showed some signs of wrinkling after a 
> couple weeks of storage.
>   The Honeycrisp apples have been storing well so far and have also 
> been high quality, though some of the apples (20%) were a little 
> small.
> Just for kicks, I bagged a few Luscious pears (3 out of 20) and 
> Superior plums (3 out of 15). I planted these trees last year...they 
> are about 7 feet tall.  The plums did not liked to be 
> bagged, All three of them split and they didn't seem to ripen as 
> fast.  The pears did just fine, and they ripened 3-5 days earlier than 
> the unbagged pears. All of my pears, bagged and unbagged, were blemish 
> free.
> Overall a good year, looking forward to seeing if I thinned the trees 
> enough to have a good crop next year!
> Nate Torgerson, Zone 4, Andover, MN
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