[NAFEX] Thinning

dmnorton at royaloakfarmorchard.com dmnorton at royaloakfarmorchard.com
Tue May 27 13:06:34 EDT 2008


Here are the "Rules of Thumb" we print on our U-Pick Guide here at Royal Oak Farm:


Weights (approx.)---1bushel = 42 lbs

                                 1/2 bushel (16 quarts) = 23 lbs

                                      1 peck (8 quarts) = 14 lbs

                                  1/2 peck (4 quarts) = 6 lbs



2 Large apples = 1 lb. 

3 Medium apples = 1 lb. 

4 Small apples = 1 lb. 



Approximately 2 - 3 lbs  of  apples are needed for a 9" pie.

There are about 125 medium size apples to the bushel, so 300 to 400 medium size apples would be between 2.5 to 3.5 bushels to the tree which is pretty average for a 10' tree.  Some growers thin to 2 fruit per cluster, the king and the next largest.  We thin to 3 per cluster on average.

PC won't come out to feed until there are consistent 60 degree nights in a row.   I have seen no evidence of feeding here at all.  over the weekend we did finally get 2 nights above 50 and one above 60 and the codling moth began to fly.  looks like i will be setting biofix for May 26, but right now it's 42 degrees and the low is to be 39 tonight.  Nothing will fly at 39, so it's been difficult to set any biofixes.  Just keep smacking those trees!



Dennis Norton
Royal Oak Farm Orchard, Zone 5
  ----- Original Message ----- 
  From: Mark Dorogi 
  To: 'North American Fruit Explorers' 
  Sent: Monday, May 26, 2008 9:29 PM
  Subject: [NAFEX] Thinning

  I have very heavy fruit set this year in my apples.  Almost all of them are loaded.  I'm bagging the apples now and thinning as I go.  It sure takes a while, but it does seem relaxing.


  I'm worked on the Cox's Orange Pippen today.  What a load of apples; I've never seen so many.  Question:  How many apples can a dwarf tree produce?  This tree is around 10 years old, a solid 10' tall and wide, well branched, not sure what rootstock, and I've put in 200 baggies and expect to put in at least another 100 more, perhaps 150 more.  I am thinning each cluster to one apple and trying to keep an average spacing of around 6".  I've probably removed 500 apples. 


  Just wondering if a dwarf tree like this can actually produce 300 or 400 apples or if I should be thinning more aggressively.  Last year, it didn't set any fruit. 


  And, how many average sized apples are in a bushel?  


  I see no bug damage yet.  It's warm out now, so I've been watching out for curculio. I'll probably go out and smack the trees a few times before bed, to knock any out.  It is supposed to get cooler overnight though, low 50's, and the next few nights it is predicted to be in the 30's.  I might even be able to get the baggies on before the bugs really get going.





  SE Michigan

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