Adaptability of primocane raspberry cultivars to a high-elevation arid climate

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Journal of the American Pomological Society





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Early-ripening, high-yielding cultivars with good consumer acceptance and few production problems are critical to the economic viability of growing primocane-fruiting raspberries for local consumption in high elevation arid climates. A replicated trial was planted in 2006 to evaluate 10 primocane-fruiting cultivars for suitability to commercial production in the US Intermountain West. Factors evaluated included annual yield, fruit size, fruiting season, consumer preference, incidence of fruit sunburn, and cane infestation by raspberry horntail, the most common cane-boring insect pest in northern Utah. The highest yields were for ‘Joan J’, averaging 3.58 kg per row meter, followed by ‘Polana’, ’Caroline’ and ‘Polka’ with 2.59, 2.40 and 2.35 kg·m-1, respectively. ‘Polka’ and ‘Joan J’ were the earliest fruiting with a harvest midpoint 21 and 18 days before ‘Heritage’, and consequently gave the highest yield reliability index. Panels and surveys showed highest consumer preference for ‘Anne’, ‘Polka’ and ‘Joan J’. ‘Jaclyn’, ‘Polana’, and ‘Joan J’ fruit had the least sunburn. There was no difference among cultivars in susceptibility to raspberry horntail; the range was 1.1 to 3.1 infested canes per row meter. The cultivars ‘Joan J’ and ‘Polka’ give the best combination of yield reliability, reasonable fruit size, good consumer acceptance, and relatively low incidence of sunburn.

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