Saturday, 19 May 2012

Disasterous rainfall


The non-stop rainfall we have been experiencing for the last couple of months has had a disasterous effect on the pears. Cultivars that are usually fairly robust and reliable have been affected by scab for the first time, and pollenation has been very low. Morettini is usually very healthy in growth, but nearly every fruitlet is completely covered with deep scab lesions. Beth is affected in both leaf and fruit, Winter Nelis and Josephine de Malines don't have a single fertilised fruitlet on the whole tree. Fondante d'Automne has just a couple that I could find. By contrast, Bishop's Thumb, Comice and Conference so far have bumper numbers of fruitlets, but overall I think it will be a very bad year for pears at least. A lot of the apple blossom was by contrast spoiled by unseasonably hard frosts but so far the fruit seems to have set. Fingers crossed that the season isn't an entire washout.

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