How AquiMax® Influences Orange Tree Development from Planting through Fruit Bearing
To have a successful crop of orange trees, it is vital for farmers to ensure that their trees receive just the right amount of moisture at the right times throughout the tree development cycle – from planting through fruit bearing. AquiMax® is designed to improve the soil’s ability to retain water and improve the distribution of that water throughout the treated area. This can assist in ensuring proper irrigation and increase not only the orange trees’ trunk diameter but also their fruit-bearing capacity.
The Study Setup
In 2016, researchers at SynTech Research located in sunny California grafted Valencia orange trees onto lemon tree stalks in an effort to discover whether AquiMax® played a positive role in tree development. To do this, they randomized the application of the AquiMax® injectable co-polymer so that treatments were given only to individual trees, and then these trees were watered to replace 100% or 70% of the water they lost through evapotranspiration. The researchers applied AquiMax via a micro-sprinkler irrigation system on August 10 and August 26 at a rate of a gallon an acre.
Untreated vs. Treated Trees
The differences in the trees that were left untreated when compared to the trees that had been treated was quite astonishing. Researchers measured the trunk diameter of each tree prior to the commencement of the study on July 7, and they were measured again on November 23. Trees watered at 100% evapotranspiration replacement experienced trunk diameter growth of only 8%, but these same orange trees treated with AquiMax® irrigation technology experienced a 13% increase in trunk diameter in the same timeframe.
Next, researchers compared the trees that received only 70% of the water lost via evapotranspiration, and the benefits of AquiMax® were even more apparent. The control tree trunk diameter increased by only 11%, but the trees treated with AquiMax® experienced trunk diameter increases of 24% – a huge difference, and one that proves how AquiMax® can benefit orange trees during their non fruit-bearing years.
Continued Benefits of AquiMax®
These same trees are still being researched, and SynTech plans to continue monitoring them for the next three to four years until they have matured and started to produce fruit. At this time, it is not known whether AquiMax® irrigation technology will have the same benefit on the orange tree’s ability to bear fruit or the yield of the crop as a whole, but based on common knowledge passed down through the generations, larger trunk diameters and healthier overall trees do tend to provide more high-quality fruit than their less-healthy counterparts growing in conditions where water distribution might fluctuate.
This study proves that AquiMax® can assist in the growing stage of the tree development process by boosting the trunk diameter size when applied at a rate of one gallon per acre twice during each growth season. Further studies will determine how AquiMax® benefits the ability of each orange tree during its fruit-bearing years, but researchers are confident that the treated trees will produce more fruit of higher quality than their untreated counterparts based on current measurements.