Observations on the Possibility of Producing Two Crops of Apples A Year in the Kenya Highlands.

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Odhiambo, H.O.
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Production of deciduous fruit trees in the Kenya highlands is heavily dependent natural chilling to break bud rest; thus fruit production follows the natural pattern of weather In this mode of production, flowering occurs once every year leading to the production of only one crop. Due to the incomplete natural conditions and the long periods of high solar radiation in the tropics, delayed defoliation is a major factor limiting fruit yields (Epenhnijsen, 1976; Denis, 1985 and Erez and Lavi, 1985). It breaking chemicals such as tar oil, winter wash, and nitrocellulose are often used to enhance the effect of natural chilling to break rest (Ru¢k, 1975 and Lavi, 1985). Use of these chemicals by small-scale fanners in Kenya is limited because they are prohibitively expensive. Some cultural practices such as defoliation, pruning and have been reported to be effective substitutes for natural chilling (Ruck, 1975 and Notodimedjo et ai, 1981) and chemical treatment (RUCk, 1975) in overcoming dormancy and delayed foliation. It has been reported that to Indonesia, defoliation of apple trees soon after harvesting leads to bud break and flowering during the expected dormant season and thus to the production of more than one crop a year (Notodimedjo et al., 1981 and VerhelJ, 1985). Similarly, defoliation has reportedly been able to overcome prolonged dormancy tn the normal fruit season (Ruck, 1975).
East African Agricultural And Forestry Journal, LIV (1-2), p. 39-42