Journal of the Department of Agriculture, Western Australia, Series 3


J. Cripps


Fruit culture, Plant breeding, Rootstocks.

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The present-day fruit tree consists of two interdependent parts—the stock or root system and the scion or above ground portion. The scion naturally gains most prominence, as it is the part of the tree with which the grower is mainly concerned in orchard management and also the portion which provides him with his income. Nevertheless, the rootstock can exert a profound influence on tree performance. For instance, such factors as root anchorage, root penetration, drought resistance, resistance to pests and diseases, susceptibility to mineral deficiencies, growth characteristics of the tree and its ultimate size, its time of flowering, setting, fruit size and colour, period of ripening and the quality of the fruit can all be affected by the choice of rootstocks.