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Some observations on hazelnut mechanical pruning in the North of Italy
- Malvicini, G. L., Roversi, A., Pansecchi, A.
- Acta horticulturae 2014 no.1052 pp. 169-174
- experimental design, fruit quality, hazelnuts, pruning, seeds, spring, Italy
- In an hazelnut orchard, located in Monferrato district (north-west of Italy), a trial of mechanical pruning has been devised in the spring 2008. The experimental design, included 5 different thesis as following: E = plants pruned only in the east side of the row; W = plants pruned only in the west side of the row; E+W = plants pruned in the both sides (east + west); E+W+T = plants pruned in the both sides with topping; U = unpruned plants (=test). The plants were mechanically pruned with a BMV trimming machine, in March. In subsequent years, the plants were never pruned. Starting from the pruning year, the yielding and fruit quality were recorded till the 2011 harvest. The results of the first year show, a non-significant yielding loss in the theses E+W and E+W+T. In the following three years, the yielding was unaffected by the different pruning theses in 2009 and 2011, while in 2010 the yielding was significantly increased by the pruning thesis except for the plants pruned just in the east side. The cumulated yielding for the four considered years does not show any significant difference. Even if the yielding was positively affected by pruning just in 2010, mechanical pruning appears suitable and useful to control the free space between the rows. About the quality, the seeds fruit ratio percentage was affected by thesis in 2008 (pâ¤.05) and 2010 (pâ¤.01). The percentage of seeds without any defect was significantly unaffected by theses, even if always lower in the unpruned plants with only the exception of 2011 production.