Session 1: Trends and Planning - The Apple Bud
This session will kick off our annual meeting with a discussion from the world’s leading Ag lender Rabo Bank. We will learn trends of apple production around the world coupled with consumer buying trends. We will hear the latest variety planting trends from the nursery perspective; are you in a club, should you be? Growers will hear great presentations to get you thinking of your next apple orchard planting and help you decide what architecture, what rootstock based on the latest information and experience. Now how do you select best nursery tree for your new system? Finally, have you considered grafting your existing orchard over to a new variety, what do you need to know?
Session 2: Selecting the System and then Growing the Apple Tree
This session will begin with some engineering design parameters for your next system. We have long been missing the engineering behind our trellis design, often copying what hasn’t failed. Next will be three Must See, thought provoking, presentations on future tree architectures and their benefits. After that we will move into the hands on, growing the tree and filling the space quickly. Equipping growers with the latest fertility strategies. Next up is our PGR guru to give us insight into how you can use PGR’s to help your tree behave.
Session 3: Balancing Crop Load – The Apple
Dr. Tustin will start the session off with the Carlson Lecture on the Orchard of the Future – where we have been and where might the future lie. Next up will revisit flower biology and walk through the incredible process of pollination. Improving the pollination environment and modeling bee foraging will round out the pollination discussion. Growers will present a panel discussion on finding that important balance between crop load and fruit quality. The session wrap up will be a presentation on optimizing environmental stress to increase fruit quality and productivity.
Session 4: Harvest Maturity and the Future of Apple Picking – The Bin
In this session, we will see the science of fruit ripening, the “how to” of maturity testing and the latest tools for assessing fruit maturity. Two leading technology companies that are pioneering the harvester of the future will introduce you to their system and provide an update on development. Is your orchard machine ready, when will you be ready and when will the technology be ready? Then our incoming president Rod Farrow will wrap our meeting and tell you what’s next for IFTA members!
At the IFTA Conference You Will:
Network with fellow tree fruit growers, nurseries, top researchers and extension specialists
Participate in field learning opportunities for hands-on practical experience including two days of field tours in leading apple orchards
Attend educational sessions on starting an apple orchard out right, tree architecture, grafting, trellis & nutrition, cropload management, harvest management and much more.