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‘Evaluation of new rootstocks for the Australian Citrus Industry’

Investigating the potential of dwarfing rootstocks for the citrus industry

The Horticulture Innovation funded project ‘Evaluation of new rootstocks for the Australian Citrus Industry – CT17002’ is led by Dr Tahir Khurshid from the NSW Department of Primary Industries, Dareton Research Station. The project is focused on evaluating several overseas rootstocks budded to a range of mandarin and sweet orange varieties.

The program is spread over five Australian states with 18 trials at grower’s properties and 4 trials at the Dareton Research Station. One of the components is evaluating the rootstocks for their dwarfing effect, which will potentially produce small trees for high-density planting systems for the citrus industry.

Size-controlling rootstocks have many benefits:

  • they are important for high-density orchards, as these plantings crop earlier and produce high yields due to many trees per unit of land
  • harvesting smaller trees is more economical than larger trees
  • smaller trees can have more efficient use of fertilisers and chemical sprays

Therefore, growth control characteristics are being sought for most citrus breeding programs worldwide.


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