Document Type : Research Paper


1 Former M.Sc. Student, Department of Horticulture, Faculty of Agriculture, Bu-Ali Sina University, Hamedan - Iran

2 Associate Professor, Department of Horticulture, Faculty of Agriculture, Bu-Ali Sina University, Hamedan - Iran

3 Assistant Professor in Horticultural Science, Department of Landscape Engineering, Faculty of Agriculture, Malayer University, Malayer - Iran

4 Professor, Department of Horticulture and Landscape, Faculty of Agriculture and Natural Resources, University of Tehran, Karaj - Iran

5 Assistant Professor, Department of Horticulture and Landscape, Faculty of Agriculture and Natural Resources, University of Tehran, Karaj - Iran


High-density planting system is one of the effective methods for improving production and profitability of tree orchards. In this research, the effects of four planting densities (1904, 2666, 3137 and 4800 tree/ha) on annual shoot growth, Physicochemical properties of fruit and leaf mineral contents of apple (Malus domestica Borkh cv ‘Granny Smith’) tree grafted on M26 clonal rootstock were studied in randomized complete block design with four treatments and four replications in College of Agriculture and Natural Resources, University of Tehran, during 2009-2010. Based on results, planting density significantly affected some qualitative characteristics such as fruit length, fruit diameter, total soluble solid, fruit dry matter, fruit ash and sun scald, but no significant effect on fruit weight, fruit L/D ratio, TA and tenacity were observed. Planting density significantly affected the leaf N and Fe concentrations. The highest N (1.81 percent) and Cu (39 µg/kg) the lowest Fe of leaves (237 µg/kg) was observed with 1904 tree/ha. Although, planting density had no significant effect on other mineral elements, but with increasing the planting density, leaf P, K, Mg and Mn content increased, but, Ca and Cu decreased. Increasing in N and Fe was associated with a decrease and increase of current seasonal shoot growth, respectively. Likewise, trees with higher crop tend to have more N and less Fe. These results showed that, under Iran climatic condition, with increasing in planting density of apple orchardit can be produced higher fruit crop without decrease in its quality parameters.


1 . ارشادی ا (1376) بررسی و مقایسه اثرات پیوند چهار رقم سیب تجارتی ‘گلاب کهنز’، ‘شفیع‌آبادی’، ‘رد دلیشز’ و‘گلدن اسموتی’ روی شش پایه رویشی مالینگ و مالینگ مرتون. دانشگاه تهران، تهران، پایان‌نامه کارشناسی ارشد.
2 . رسول‌زادگان ی (1375) میوه‌کاری در مناطق معتدله. انتشارات دانشگاه صنعتی اصفهان. 728 ص.
3 . عابدی‌ قشلاقی ا و فیفائی ر (1391) اثر تـراکم کاشـت بـر صـفات کمـی و کیفیـت نـارنگی ‘انـشو’ (Citrus unshiu) روی پایـه ‘فلائینـگ دراگـون’. به‌زراعی نهال و بذر.  28(1): 93-81.
 4 . Al-Hinai YK and Roper TR (2004) Rootstock effects on growth and quality of ‘Gala’ apples. Hortscience. 39: 1231-1233.
5 . Barrera-Guerra JL and Slowik K (1981) Effect of planting density,  position of  leaves in the tree crown and type of leaf on the accumulation of nutrients in apple cultivars. Acta Horticulture. 114: 113-114.
6 . Barrit BH, Drake SR, Konishi BS and Rom CR (1997) Influence of sunlight level and rootstock on apple fruit quality. Acta Horticulture. 451: 596-572.
7 . Buler Z and Mika A (2006) Growth, yield and quality in Šampon apple trees trained using four different training systems: Hytec, solen, mikado and spindle. Journal of Fruit and Ornamental Plant Research. 14: 117-124.
8 . Campbell RJ (1995) New production systems for apples. The Sixth of the Australasian Council on Tree and Nut Crops Inc. Lismor, NSW, Australia. 11-15 September 1995.
9 . Corelli L and Sansavini S (1989) Light interception and photosyntesis related to planting density and canopy management in apple. Acta Horticulture. 243: 159-174.
10 . Fallahi E and Mohan SK (2000) Influence of nitrogen and rootstook on tree growth, precocity, fruit quality, leaf mineral nutrients, and fire Blight in ‘scarlet Gala’ apple. Horttechnology. 10: 589-592
11 . Ferree DC  and Warrington IJ (2003) Apples: Botany, Production and Uses. CABI Publishing, USA. 704 p.
12 . Green S, Mcnaughton K, Wunsche JN and Clothier B (2003) Modeling light interception and transpiration of apple tree canopies. Journal of Agronomy. 95: 1380-1387.
13 . Hampson CR, Quamme HA, Kappel F and Brownlee RT (2004) Varying density with constant rectangularity: II. Effects on apple tree yield, fruit size and fruit color development in three training systems over ten years. Hortscience. 39: 507-511.
14 . Ikinci A, Bolat I, Ercisli S and Kodad O (2014) Influence of rootstocks on growth, yield, fruit quality and leaf mineral element contents of pear cv. ‘Santa Maria’in semi-arid conditions. Biological Research. 47: 71.
15 . Jackson TE (1989) World-wide development of high density planting in research and practice. Acta Horticulturea. 243: 17-27.
16 . Jivan C and Sala F (2014) Relationship between tree nutritional status and apple quality. HortScienc. 41: 1-9.
17 . Johnson RS and Lakso AN (1991) Approaches to modeling light interception in orchrds. Hortscience. 26: 1002-1004.
18 . Jung SK and Choi HS (2010) Light penetration, growth, and fruit productivity in ‘Fuji’ apple trees trained to four growing systems. Scientia Horticulturae. 4: 672-678.
19 . KucuKyumu KZ and Erdal I (2011) Rootstock and cultivar effect on mineral nutrition, seasonal nutrient variation and correlations among leaf, flower and fruit nutrient concentrations in apple trees. Bulgar Journal of Agricultural Science. 17: 633-641.
20 . Liczar-malanczuk M (2004) Influence of planting and training systems on fruit yield in apple orchard. Journal of Fruit and Ornamental Plant Research. 12: 97-104.
21 . Marschner H (1995) Functions of mineral nutrients: macronutirents. Pp: 299-312. In: Marschner, H. (Ed.). Mineral Nutrition of Higher Plants. 2nd Edition. Academic Press, N.Y. 889p.
22 . Nachtigall GR and Dechen AR (2006) Seasonality of nutrients in leaves and fruits of apple trees. Scientia Agricola. 63: 493-501.
23 . Olzewski T and Mik A (1986) Planting density effects on mineral composition of leaves and fruit ‘Mac spur’ apples. Acta Horticulturae. 160: 259-260.
24 . Ozkan Y, Yıldız K, Küçüker E, Çekiç Ç, Özgen M and Akça Y (2012) Early performance of cv. ‘Jonagold’ apple on M.9 in five tree training systems. Hort Science. 39: 158-163.
25 . Palmer JW and Warrington IJ (2000) Underlying principles of successful apple planting systems. Acta
Horticulturae. 513: 357-363.
26 . Pramanick KK, Kishore DK, Singh R and Kumar J (2012) Performance of apple (Malus × Domestica Borkh) cv. ‘Red Spur’ on a new apple rootstock in high density planting. Scientia Horticulturae. 133: 37-39.
27 . Robinson TL, Lakso AN and Carpenter SG (1991) Canopy development, yield, and fruit quality of ‘Empire’ and ‘delicious’ apple trees grown in four orchard production systems for ten years. Journal of American Society for Horticultural Science. 116: 179-187.
28 . Rom CR (1991) Light thresholds for apple tree canopy growth and development. Hortscience. 26: 989-992.
29 . Saei A, Tustin DS, Zamani Z, Talaie A and Hal AJ (2011) Cropping effects on the loss of apple fruit firmness during storage: The relationship between texture retentionand fruit dry matter concentration. Scientia Horticulturae. 130: 256-265.
30 . Sotiropoulos ΤE (2008) Performance of the apple (Malus Domestica Borkh) cultivar imperial double ‘Red delicious’ grafted on five rootstocks. Horticultural Science. (Prague). 35(1): 7-11.
31 . Szczygiel A and Mika A (2003) Effects of high density planting and two training methods of dwarf apple trees grown in sub-carpathian Region. Journal of Fruit and Ornamental Plant Research.11: 45-51.
32 . Tsipouridis C, Thomidis T and Isaakidis KE (2005) Effect of peach cultivars, rootstocks and phytophthora on iron chlorosis. World Journal of Agricultural Science. 1: 137-142.
33 . Tustin DS (1993) Spacing and rootstock studies with centeral leader apple canopies in a high vigour environment. Acta Horticulturae. 349: 169-177.
34 . Tustin DS, Hirst PM and Warrington IJ (1988) Influence of orientation and position of fruiting lateral on canopy light penetration, yield, and fruit quality of ‘Granny Smith’ apple’. Journal of American Society for Horticultural Science. 113: 696-699.
35 . Volz RK, Harker FR, Hallet IC and Lang A (2004) Development of texture apple fruit – a biophysical perspective. Acta Horticulturae. 636: 473-479.
36 . Waldemar T (2010) Crop loading studies with ‘Jonagold’ apple tree. Journal of fruit and ornamental plant research. 18(1): 59-69.
37 . Weber MS (2001) Optimizing tree density in apple orchards on dwarf rootstock. Acta Horticulturae. 557: 229-234.
38 . Wertheim SJ (1985) Productivity and fruit quality of apple in single–row and full field planting systems. Scientia Horticulturae. 26: 191-208.
39 . Widmer A and Krebs C (2001) Influence of planting density and tree form on yield and fruit quality of ‘Golden Delicious’ and ‘Royal Gala’ apples. Acta Horticulturae. 557: 235-241.
40 . Yuri JA, González J, Talice VJ and DelPozo A (2011) Responses of fruit growth, quality and productivity to crop load in apple cv. ‘Ultra Red Gala’/MM111. Scientia Horticulturae. 127: 305-312.
41 . Zarei M, Baninasab B, Ramin AA and Pirmoradian M (2013) The effect of chemical thinning on seasonal changes of mineral nutrient concentrations in leaves and fruits of ‘Soltani’ apple tree. Iran Agricultural Research. 32: 89-100.