The Department of Primary Industries in Tatura will monitor shade netting conditions on Royal Gala apples around the Goulburn Valley this month.January 2, 2013 4:22am
Dr Lexie McClymont prepares weather monitoring equipment before deployment in commercial netted and un-netted apple orchards in the Goulburn Valley.
In January 2013, Department of Primary Industries scientist Lexie McClymont will closely monitor weather conditions, fruit temperatures and sunburn damage in netted and un-netted Royal Gala apple blocks in the Goulburn Valley to investigate how the netting works to reduce sun damage on fruit.
Dr McClymont, who is based at Tatura DPI, said it was known that shade netting reduces sun damage, even though the air temperature may not be reduced under the netting.
Direct solar radiation plays a major role in causing sunburn damage through a combination of increasing apple skin temperatures and ultra-violet radiation.
She said DPI’s aim was to have a better understanding of how all the different components of weather interact to cause sun damage.
‘‘With this information we will be able to give growers better predictions and warnings of sun damage on fruit for both current and future climate scenarios.’’
Dr McClymont said this would help prevent some of the losses that occur each year due to sun-damaged apples and pears.
‘‘Fruit are often discarded due to sun damage varying from discoloration to full-blown sunburn. Past reports from Australian and overseas pack houses suggest 10 per cent of apples are rejected in a typical season,’’ she said.
‘‘Losses are much greater when field rejections are included and in seasons that are warmer than normal. Growers in Australia estimate losses to vary from six to 30 per cent.’’
Dr McClymont said some growers have invested heavily in practices, products and infrastructure to reduce their losses. These include shade netting, evaporative cooling and spray-on products.
She said shade netting has been a popular option for both sun and hail protection, despite its high initial capital cost of about $40
‘‘Existing netted orchards in the Goulburn Valley offer a good opportunity to learn more about how to prevent sun damage on fruit,’’ Dr McClymont said.
‘‘The DPI Victoria and Horticulture Australia are co-operating with local orchardists in this project as part of the program for understanding apple and pear production systems in a changing climate.’’
A former priest and teacher at St Colman's in Shepparton has pleaded guilty to sexually assaulting a 13-year-old student in 1970.
Beautiful weather greeted Tungamah residents for the 18th running of the Tungamah Lions Ten Thousand on Sunday.
When Keith and Marion Grumley and their growing family moved to Tatura on January 18, 1968, little did they know that it would be the start of a long and lasting connection to the town.
Echuca Lion Ken Walter has been presented with the International President’s Medal.
Rochester Tigers take on Rochester United today in the Goulburn Murray Cricket Twenty20 match.
Sorting future of Campaspe pools
Two primary school students have been among just 25 in Victoria to be awarded the Prime Ministers NAIDOC Medal.
Local athletes will go head-to-head with some of the best competitors from around the world in swimming and athletics in December.
Pre-schools in Heathcote and Colbinabbin will benefit from grants announced last week.
Moira Shire Council says 36 cents of every dollar spent on staff costs is 'not an unusual number'.
Works on Edward River Beach to Beach Walk to be completed.
Further redundancies at Victoria’s largest rural water corporation, Goulburn-Murray Water, are possible, with more efficiency reviews being carried out.
Rotary's inaugural Community Policing Award goes to Detective Leading Senior Constable Jenny Parker for her work above and beyond her duties working with victims of sexual abuse.
Discover unbelievable local deals from local businesses every week in the Goulburn and Murray Valley area with Leapon.com.au!
Search properties for sale or rent across North Central Victoria and Southern NSW. Visit your local website for local homes....
Search for published and unpublished photos from McPherson Media Group newspapers and magazines. All our photos are available to purchase.
Place an advertisement in any one of McPherson Media Group's local newspapers.