Apple rootstocks currently available to the SA apple industry have various shortcomings. Disadvantages include excess vigour, low yield efficiency, lack of precocity, poor adaptability, and high susceptibility to pests and diseases. Recent studies have found some of the Geneva® rootstocks to be significantly more yield efficient and precocious than standard rootstocks.

HORTGRO Science currently has four rootstock evaluation sites with a ‘more dwarfing’ and an adjacent ‘more vigorous’ planting at each site. Rosy Glow trees were planted at Paardekloof in the Witzenberg Valley in 2010, while Fuji trees were planted at Helderwater in the Langkloof, Oakvalley Estate and Breëvlei (both Grabouw) in 2013.

Geneva Rootstock Progress

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