Tour of an apple orchard.

Improving Economic and Environmental Sustainability in Tree-Fruit Production Through Changes in Rootstock Use

Principal Investigator

Emily Hoover

Department and College

Department of Horticultural Science in the College of Food, Agricultural and Natural Resource Sciences

Project Number


Funding Type


Partnering States and Countries

  • Colorado
  • Georgia
  • Iowa
  • Kentucky
  • Maine
  • Massachusetts
  • Michigan
  • Missouri
  • New Jersey
  • New Mexico
  • New York
  • North Carolina
  • Ohio
  • Pennslyvania
  • South Carolina
  • Utah
  • Vermont
  • Virginia
  • Washington
  • Canada
  • Mexico

Project Start and End Date

October 1, 2017-September 30, 2022

Project Summary

As evidenced in the previous work and performance of this project, the proposed and on-going research will enhance the economic viability of tree-fruit growers through improved selection of rootstocks that lead to greater production efficiency and improved fruit quality. Orchard labor and land will be utilized more efficiently, with fewer tree losses to pests and environmental stresses, leading to a faster and greater return on investment.

A compelling need exists to initiate new coordinated research on a large scale for temperate-zone fruit tree rootstocks as new genetic materials are developed or made available. Many new rootstocks will require a change in orchard cultural practices. Continued testing will provide a thorough evaluation of promising rootstocks, multiple genetic systems, and planting and training system efficiencies. This research project will continue to develop sound research-based recommendations for growers and nurseries that are based on extensive and collaborative multi-state work, providing an increased understanding of rootstock adaptability and performance.