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Yields of Fruit and Vegetables

Nature volume 142, pages 641642 (08 October 1938) | Download Citation



SOME figures issued by the Ministry of Agriculture on September 2 outline the condition of various horticultural crops in many centres of Great Britain. Whilst the main interest of this survey is doubtless economic, it should also be interpreted as indicating a potent need for research into the cropping of fruit trees. Apple yields of Bramley's Seedling, Cox's Orange Pippin and cider varieties have only amounted to between 10 and 40 per cent of their capabilities. They were somewhat higher in 1937, but even then the crop average was decidedly below 50 per cent. Runner beans, Brussels sprouts, cabbage, carrots, parsnips, peas and onions yield, in general, crops of 60-80 per cent, and were slightly better last year. The poor cropping of the apple for 1937 and 1938 revealed by these returns is not an isolated instance, for the crop of 1935 was also very low. Damage by spring frosts and inadequate pollination are doubtless causes of low yield, but it should be possible for modern science to raise the apple's cropping potentialities above 50 per cent in most years.

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