(Pyrys malus Linn)
cultivated apple (Malus domestica Borkh ) is reported to have
originated in the temperate region of western Asia, between Black
sea and Caspian sea. Apple is a symbol of health, beauty and love.
This fruit has universal cultivation and worldwide consumption in
many forms. In Pakistan, various forms of apple showing great
diversity in size, shape, colour and taste are grown from the time
immemorial, particularly at high elevations (About 1300 m) in the
areas adjoining Afghanistan, Iran and China. Most of the developed
varieties have been introduced during the British period. The total
area, reported under apples in Pakistan is about 45875 hectares with
an annual production of 589281 tonnes (1998-99).
cultivated varieties of apples presently grown in Pakistan have been
given the name as Pyrus malus Linn. These are grafted on the
rootstock Pyrus baccata (Crab apple).
is a very nutritious, aromatic and delicious fruit. It is very rich
in Vitamin C, B and A. It contains about 11% sugar besides essential
minerals in appreciable amounts. It has colour appeal, appetite and
is most refreshing. It can be used in many different ways. It is
cooked, made into preserves, Jellies, candied, canned, prepared as
fresh apple juice, made into cider or vinegar. The peel is used for
of some serious pests and disease problem there is an increasing
trend for bringing more area under apple because of better returns.
Most of the
commercially grown apple cultivars in Pakistan requires a cooler
climate than all other fruits. Apple thrives and fruits best under a
relatively cool slow growing season, usually met with at higher
altitudes. Therefore, proper selection of varieties is of major
grown under such conditions are Amri, Kashmiri Amri, Golden
Delicious, Red Delicious, Sky spur, Banki, Kulu etc.
Low chilling varieties such as Anna, Summer Gold and Golden
Dorset have been identified giving encouraging results and hence can
successfully be grown in lower elevations.
is also an important factor associated with fruit production
especially for high chill varieties where no other source of
irrigation is available. An annual rainfall between 25 to 30 inches
evenly distributed throughout the year is most desirable. In low
rainfall areas best production can be achieved by supplementing
Although apple tree grows and bears fruit in a wide range of soil,
the most suitable appears to be deep rich, well drained fertile loam
soil. The soils should be free from hard substrata and waterlogging
Apple plants are raised on the seedlings/suckers rootstock which
are more adaptable to the soil and climatic conditions. The
rootstocks are grafted with desired scion variety during
December-January. Usually tounge or cleft grafting gives a good
success and is performed about 20-30 cms above ground level. T
budding at the onset of monsoon rains is also practiced.
and Planting: While planting an orchard, proper decisions
regarding selection of varieties, rootstocks, tree size and spacing,
pollination and planting procedures must be made with understanding.
Planting distance varies according to variety, vigour of rootstock,
the fertility level of the soil and general climatic conditions of
the area. Most often planting is done in square system. However, on
slopes contour planting should be preferred.
Requirements: Application of manures and fertilizers start right
from the planting of orchard and the first application is made at
the time of filling of pits. In an orchard of average fertility, NP
and K may be applied in the ratio of 70:35:70 grams per year age of
the tree respectively and the dose may be stabilized after 10 years
(700:350:700 g of NPK per tree). These applications may be
supplemented by FYM at 10 kg per year age of the tree. The increase
or decrease in the fertilizer doses may be regulated on the basis of
fertility status report of the soil and plants.
Apple orchards at high elevations are largely dependent on
natural rainfall. A greater part of the apple growing season in this
region gets regular precipitation except in May-June. During these
months some arrangements should be made for irrigation water because
this period coincides with natural fruit drops which can be lessened
if trees are supplemented with irrigation. In Quetta region there is
no rainfall during summer hence irrigation should be applied after
10 days to young plants and 15 days in case of mature and bearing
The pruning of apple is often ignored by many orchardists, mainly
because they are unaware of the objectives of this practice. Young
non-bearing apple trees are prunned to train or shape them in such a
way that a strong framework consisting of stout limbs is built to
support maximum crops of fruit without breakage. Prunning of bearing
trees is practiced to keep the tree tops low so as to facilitate
thinning, spraying, picking, to make the trees well opened for
penetration of sun light which in turn promotes better quality and
colour of the fruit and to remove weak, diseased and undiseasable
branches. Best time of pruning is late dormant season because it
will eliminate the severe injury from extremely low winter
temperature and heal up the cuts quickly.
Packing And Storage:
should be harvested at proper picking maturity. The time of picking
will depend upon the degree of maturity which in turn depends upon
the keeping quality of the fruit. Apples picked at immature stage
results in poor quality and flavour, tend to shrivel and are subject
to physiological disorders
such as scald, bitter pit, soft and brown core. Fruits do not mature
evenly on the tree, therefore, more than one pickings are required.
Avoid bruising and stem punctures. Picking should start from lower
branches of a tree advancing towards the top. After picking apples
should be put under cover in the coolest, well ventilated place.
Apples may be packed in wooden crate, card board boxes, cartons or
in film bags. Before packing the fruit should be graded according to
size and exterior quality of the apple. The length of post harvest
life during storage will depend upon the stage of maturation at
harvest time, the length of the fruit remains at ordinary storage
temperature and at cold temperature, season of picking and the
Tree Borer (Apriona cinerea)
of the beetle is limiting factor in the production of apples in Swat
and Azad Kashmir. After hactching the grubs start boring into the
shoots from the top and make long galleries downward which reach the
main stem in big trees and root portion of the young tree.
Phosphatic insecticides are put in the hole which kill the larvae.
Sanjose Scale (Aspidiotus
pest attacks pome and stone fruits and nuts. They suck cell sap and
passes winter as nymphal stage. The infected plant turn pale and
flowers are shed.
After fruit formation spray Lorsban.
Wholly Apids. (Eriosoma
wool is seen on the twigs. The pest
suck the cell scap. Infected part of the plant are dried.
Remains active during summer.
Lorsban or Karate should be sprayed
is fruit borer and is very destructive. The adult lay eggs on the
calyx end of the fruit. Larvae enters the fruit and eat the flesh.
After feeding it fall to the ground.
Tarcol bands are made on the trunk to prevent larvae crawling to the
Remove old bark
Spray Lorsban at small fruits
Distruction of larvae and pupae from the soil and around trees.
is a fungal disease and appears on new leaves and fruits in form of
white powdery deposits which hinders normal photosynthesis process.
The infected leaves turn pale, twisted and fruit stops growth.
Spray fungicide like Benlate, Dithene M-45, Topsin-M etc. at dorment
stage or at bud break.
Another spray at the petal fall stage is needed.
newly emerged leaves and fruits have black irregular spots. The
infected fruit looks ugly and
remains stunted and rot in the storage.
Spray before bud break Dithene M-45, Captan, Topsin-M etc.