Fruit Times

May 1, 2017

The orchard site near the North East, PA Escarpment hit full bloom on Wednesday April 26 and is now included in our tables and charts.

Peach shoot injured by Oriental fruit moth larvae. Photo: G. Krawczyk, Penn State
April 28, 2017

The warm weather and the accumulation of degree days, which in Pennsylvania are on pace with 2012 spring conditions, moved the development of plants and insect pests very rapidly forward.

Bitter pit begins to show up on Honeycrisp several weeks before harvest and the incidence can increase two- to four-fold after a month in storage. Photo: Tara Baugher
April 28, 2017

Multiple years of studies in grower orchards are providing additional clues for managing Honeycrisp in the orchard to prevent bitter pit following storage.

Protect any trees still in bloom: Fire blight conditions ideal April 29 through May 2. (Photo: K. Peter)
April 28, 2017

Conditions are optimal for fire blight, apple scab, and rust infections. Growers are encouraged to keep trees protected. Other diseases for the fruit grower radar are also discussed.

Different dormant plant sizes. Photo: K. Demchak, Penn State
April 28, 2017

A successful strawberry planting hinges on getting the basics right at planting time. If you can pay attention to the basics, you are well on your way to having a vigorous planting.

The video “Apples for the Retail Market” provides Dr. Rob Crassweller’s recommendations for varieties to grow for a farm market or retail stand.
April 27, 2017

The Penn State Extension Tree Fruit team has created videos to refresh growers on innovative growing techniques for the start of the 2017 growing season.

 Shortly after tree growth begins, gently remove the 3 developing shoots below the leader to eliminate competition for leader growth. Photo: Tara Baugher
April 27, 2017

Timely tree training and integrated management of newly planted trees will ensure the success and future profitability of high density apple plantings.

Apple flowers, 2016. Photo: Rob Crassweller, Penn State
April 26, 2017

Cloudy, warm weather may result in a greater tree response to chemical thinners this week.

Photo: R. Crassweller, Penn State
April 26, 2017

The reliability of the Cornell carbohydrate thinning model forecast is dependent on weather forecasts.

Photo: T. Baugher, Penn State
April 24, 2017

A few more weather stations are in full bloom. Normal rates of chemical thinners were recommended for the weekend, and decreased rates are suggested for the next 4 days.

Be proactive about fire blight management: Let’s not repeat 2014. (Photo: B. Lehman)
April 21, 2017

Conditions are favorable for fire blight and apple scab. Additional tools for the fire blight management toolbox are discussed.

Photo: Tara Baugher, Penn State
April 20, 2017

Warm weather this past weekend pushed apple flower development, and growers will be looking for windows of opportunity for the application of chemical thinners.

Control for fire blight and apple scab is critical during bloom. (Photo: K. Peter)
April 17, 2017

Bloom is well underway in parts of PA and MD. Fire blight and scab disease conditions are in full force now. Growers are encouraged to protect trees.

Oriental fruit moth adult. Photo: G. Krawczyk
April 14, 2017

Despite the calendar indicating just the middle of April, all stone fruits and even some apple cultivars in southern Pennsylvania are already in bloom.

Satsuma plum in bloom. Photo: T. Baugher
March 31, 2017

While I panicked in February, the warm March weather slowed flower development and as it turned out, March was colder than February.

Blueberry buds breaking. Photo: Erutuon on (CC BY-SA 2.0)
March 31, 2017

Fluctuating temperatures can cause as much or more crop loss than cold winter temperatures or spring frosts.

Photo: Mark Seetin
March 30, 2017

Christina Grozinger, Director of the Center for Pollinator Research at Penn State, discusses a holistic approach to fixing the pollinator problem.

March 30, 2017

This Penn State Extension publication, in Spanish and English, is designed for use by orchard employees - often the first individuals to detect a new occurrence of a fruit disease or insect pest.

Growers need to be on alert for apple scab infection period this week. (Photo: K. Peter)
March 28, 2017

Due to the presence of green tip on early varieties of apples combined with rain and mild temperatures occurring this week, we are in our first apple scab infection period for 2017.

Spotted lanternfly egg masses. Photo: Emelie Swackhamer
March 15, 2017

People can reduce the populations of spotted lanternfly on their properties by killing the overwintering eggs.