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Rapid Apple Decline Making you SAD? Complete Our Questionnaire

Posted: March 28, 2017

For commercial tree fruit growers in Pennsylvania, who feel they have been experiencing Rapid Apple Decline in their orchard, we are requesting their assistance by completing a questionnaire to help us further study the problem.
A declining tree with bark removed from graft union to show necrosis. Note numerous rootstock suckers. (Photo: K. Peter)

A declining tree with bark removed from graft union to show necrosis. Note numerous rootstock suckers. (Photo: K. Peter)

In December 2016 Fruit Times, I wrote an article describing a mystery about the rapid or sudden collapse of young, dwarf apple trees. I also spent time during the 2017 winter meeting season talking about issue during the talk “Diseases for the Fruit Grower Radar.” Since folks have been primed, we now need your help.

In order to facilitate our understanding of the big picture of what might be causing this issue, we developed a questionnaire to collect specifics about trees and sites for growers who are experiencing RAD.

To review additional diagnostic symptoms, please refer to the December 5, 2016 Fruit Times article: Having RAD is also SAD.

If you identify with RAD, please complete the 2017 Penn State Extension Rapid Apple Decline Survey by April 3, 2017.

Thank you for your participation!

Commonly asked questions:

Who should participate?

Commercial tree fruit growers in Pennsylvania, who have experienced the sudden or rapid decline of young, dwarf apple trees (2 – 6+ years old) in large plantings.

Can commercial growers from other states in the Northeast and Mid-Atlantic participate?

Penn State is requesting for commercial PA tree fruit growers only. However, Extension personnel in other states will be administering this same questionnaire. The questionnaire has been standardized to be able to collect the same information from growers throughout the region. If you identify with RAD, please contact the Extension folks or tree fruit pathologist you typically interact with in your state.

How long will it take to complete the questionnaire?

Completion of the questionnaire should take approximately 10 minutes.

Will my information be kept confidential?

Yes. All information will be kept confidential and your contact information will not be shared.

Why are you requesting my contact information?

After completing the questionnaire, Tree Fruit Team Extension personnel from your region will contact you to make an appointment for an in-person visit to your orchard to follow up with your questionnaire and to collect additional data from your affected trees/site.

After I fill out the questionnaire, what will you do with it?

We will compile everyone’s answers in order to see if there are any commonalities among affected sites. In addition, we will follow up with an in-person visit to your orchard.

What if I am unable to answer all of the questions?

No problem! Fill out the questions the best you can. When we follow up with an in-person visit, we will collect any remaining information.

Will you follow up on the questionnaire in person?

Yes – Someone from the Penn State Extension Tree Fruit Team will follow up to schedule an in-person visit to your orchard to evaluate your trees.

Is there a closing date for the questionnaire?

We would like folks to complete the questionnaire by April 3. We need time to organize and prep for the season visits.

I don’t need to fill out the questionnaire since I don’t have issues in my orchard right now, but what if I notice something this season?

If something unusual pops up this season, please contact Dr. Kari Peter and/or the primary Penn State Extension person for your region.

I heard your talk during the winter meetings and I received a hard copy questionnaire from you. Should I fill it out and send it to you, or fill out the online questionnaire?

The hard copy questionnaire that was handed out at several of the 2017 winter grower meetings is identical to the online questionnaire. Whatever will be easiest for you – just be sure to fill out one of them!

Who should I contact if I have questions about the questionnaire?

For any questions, please contact Dr. Kari Peter either by email or phone (1-717-677-6116 Extension 223).

The Penn State Tree Fruit Team appreciates the financial assistance from the State Horticultural Society of Pennsylvania Extension Advisory Board and the Appalachian Fruit Growers Association.

Contact Information

Kari A. Peter
  • Assistant Professor
Email:
Phone: 717-677-6116