[NAFEX] 111 not productive?

Alan Haigh alandhaigh at gmail.com
Tue Apr 26 17:38:07 EDT 2011

"MM111 is only
>moderately productive and rather slow to begin fruiting"

Or so I've often read.  What most homegrowers don't understand is that is
advice primarily for commercial production and it is about average yield
over the first several years from planting.

I believe the idea that more vigorous rootstocks are less productive once
they have matured is flat-out mistaken.  The Japanese still primarily use a
rootstock similar in vigor to 111 and their orchards produce as well as the
best managed European orchards on dwarfing rootstock.  They not only get
great production per acre but also produce some of the largest and best
quality apples in the world.

The trees in these orchards are trained as open centers- converted from
central leader after 8 or 9 years with usually 2 branches off the trunk
splitting into 2 more and all fruiting wood comes off this.  They are
trained so all the fruiting wood gets full light exposure.

I don't have the information on the amount of labor these trees take to
manage but I suspect considerably more than orchards on dwarfing rootstock.
That's exactly what I like about vigorous rootstocks- more work for me.  And
a legacy for our children that they can climb in.

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