Horticulture and Modern Orchard Management:

  • Plant propagation; rootstock and cultivar selection; planting systems, cultivation, and management practices to improve yields, quality, and profitability of tree fruit and grapes.
  • Focus on resistance to insects and diseases, as well as mitigating practices for environmental stresses (late frost, sunburn damage, drought).
  • Refinement of precision irrigation, pruning, and thinning techniques for crop load and canopy management in high density planting systems.
  • New planting and training systems for sweet cherry to lower costs and ease harvest.
A harvesting tractor in front of extensive grapevines

Plant Protection and Sustainability

  • Partnership with CALS for testing new Cornell-developed apple varieties.
  • Organic agriculture research focusing on disease-resistant cultivars and biological controls (e.g., predatory insects, traps).
  • Guidance for revitalizing private and commercial heirloom orchards.
  • Gleaning excess farm produce for local food rescue and distribution.
Bins of red apples, people and trees in the background