NC-140 Bi-Axis BlackPearl Sweet Cherry Rootstock Trial

Project goal: To study the influence of rootstock on scion vigor and productivity in a bi-axis UFO system.

Project description:  In 2019, a block of sweet cherry var. BlackPearl was planted and trained to a bi-axis upright fruiting offshoot (UFO) system.  This trial is testing the scion vigor and productivity of BlackPearl grown on five rootstocks: Gisela 3, Gisela 6, Gisela 12, Krymsk 6, and Mazzard and is replicated in sweet cherry growing regions around the U.S.  Each rootstock/scion combination is planted at a different spacing based on the rootstock’s dwarfing capacity: G3 = 1.2m, G6 = 2.4m, G12 = 2.4m, K6 = 1.8m, and Mazzard = 3.0m.  This block is currently in the establishment phase.  During the 2019 growing season cordons were chosen and attached to the low wire of the trellis system.  In 2020, upright offshoots were attached and trained to the trellis system.  Currently, only trunk cross-sectional area data has been collected but in the future, we will measure yield and fruit quality.

Project lead/collaborators: Nikki Rothwell and Greg Lang

Funding sources: NC-140 funds

Start year: 2019

End year: 2029