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A 3D digitizing tool to determine fruit quality distribution within the canopy

Dallabetta, N., Costa, F., Giordan, M., Guerra, A., Pasqualini, J., Wehrens, R., Costa, G.
Acta horticulturae 2017 no.1160 pp. 19-26
apples, canopy, color, computer software, cultivars, fruit quality, fruits, growing season, summer, trees
The “Slender Spindle”, one of the most used training systems for apple, was compared with the “Bi-axis”, an innovative training system, to determine their effect on fruit quality and fruit distribution within the canopy on 'Gala' cultivar. Two levels of crop loads were also introduced to observe their effects through chemical and manual thinning. Fruit position in the canopy was monitored during summer using different software to draw in 3D the tree architecture. Also, fruits were monitored during the growing season for their growth and maturation. At the end of the season, fruits were harvested, graded and analyzed for their quality traits. Fruit position had a strong influence on fruit quality. The fruits in the layers were significantly different. In the upper part of the tree, fruits had a higher percentage of over color and bigger fruit size compared to the middle and the lower part of the canopy. No significant differences were found between the two training systems. Crop load influenced fruit quality in both training systems in the same way on fruit size and over color. The lowest crop load treatment had a higher percentage of over color and bigger fruit size compared to the higher crop load.