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The Best Practice Resource (BPR) is our free online one-stop-shop to support best practice throughout the Australian avocado supply chains. Register here to access. If you are already registered, log in and check out the new BPR Library.

New Small Tree – High Productivity Initiative video

In 2013 work began on the Small Tree – High Productivity Initiative aimed at transforming the efficiency and productivity of Australian avocado, macadamia and mango orchards. The initiative has been inspired by productivity gains that have occurred in apple orchards, where increases in yields from 10 to 15 tonnes per hectare in the 1970s to 60 to 100 tonnes per hectare today have been achieved using modern high-density planting systems.

The Initiative includes multiple areas of research, including comprehensive field trials on trees planted at low, medium and high densities. A number of canopy management and training strategies aiming to keep the trees small and maximise yields as they mature are also being assessed. A feature of the Initiative is that these field trials are supported by fundamental research involving tree growth modelling using sophisticated computer programs and molecular biology to understand how the plants DNA controls flowering and vegetative growth. Identification of vigour managing rootstocks that restrict growth but not yield is another important aspect of the work.

This video ‘Unlocking the secrets to high orchard productivity’ outlines and illustrates the thinking behind the work and the key research areas.

This video can be viewed here, or via the Library of the Best Practice Resource. You can log in (or request access!) via

This article was produced for the 7 July 2017 Guacamole.

Date Published: 07/07/2017