DAS now predicts bloom phenology for Gala, Red Delicious, Cripps Pink, and Ambrosia. The models predict the start and duration for 8 different bud development and bloom stages: green tip, half-inch green, tight cluster, first pink, full pink, first bloom, full bloom, and petal fall.
Bud growth and the progression of bloom stages are dependent on temperature, just like insect development. Therefore, degree-days are accumulated from January 1st to predict when the different bloom stages occur and overlap in an orchard.
Each apple cultivar has slightly different temperature requirements, so each cultivar has its own model. Bloom phenology information is given for the current date and up to 16 days into the future. This information is useful for management of bee pollination, bloom thinning, and fire blight, for example.
The development of these models was based on extensive data sets collected by the Washington Tree Fruit Research Commission. More research is underway in order to add more cultivars and to tie the bloom phenology into our bee foraging model.
To see the model output for new models, edit your station in your DAS account settings and add any model to that station. As always, your feedback and comments are most welcome.
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The DAS Team