Apple Replant disease (ARD) is a major problem for fruit growers and fruit tree growers. Apple replant disease occurs when apple trees are planted on fields where apple trees have previously grown. The problem is larger when the new plantings have the same rootstock.
On all soil types, replant disease forces rootstock and fruit tree growers to move to fresh soil. Finding fresh fields over and over again is however impossible. That is why Fruittree Rootstocks Holland is developing a replant tolerant rootstock. Replant disease can be found in various causes. There appears to be a relationship between soil organisms and replant disease. Also the different exudates of the roots seem to have an effect.
On soils with replant disease there is a reduced growth of apple trees. In orchards this effects the production and in nurseries the cultivation of good plant material.
Growing on fresh soil is practically very difficult. And chemical control of replant disease is prohibited by law. For Fruittree Rootstocks Holland the development of a rootstock with tolerance against replant disease is the future-proof solution. International and national research is closely followed.
Fruittree Rootstocks Holland is also carrying out its own selection program, and selects tolerant seedlings and rootstocks.
Developing the replant disease tolerant rootstock, Fruittree Rootstocks Holland BV is also taking other characteristics into account. Criteria important for the fruit grower and nurseryman are assessed. For example resistance to scab, mildew and fire blight. Disease resistance and tolerance is becoming increasingly important due to the by law limited use of effective pesticides against these diseases.
Climate change is irreversible. Extreme heat and drought, sometimes followed by heavy showers, are factors that are taken into account developing a new rootstock. Tolerance to frost and salinization are also assessment criteria.