Leaf tissue sampling/analysis in orchards is a hot topic these days, with specialists from both the Ontario Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs (OMAFRA) and Nova Scotia’s Perennia advocating for the practice recently.
Erika DeBrouwer, OMAFRA tree fruit specialist, writes that “leaf sampling is one of the most valuable and standardized analysis tools to monitor and diagnose nutrient status within the established orchard” and is a cost-effective approach to identifying tree fruit nutrient status. While it’s a little late for the ideal timing for tissue sampling – terminal bud set – in Ontario, Perennia notes that late July to early August is ideal for Nova Scotian conditions. The organization also notes that collecting samples prior to or after the specified period may give inaccurate nutrient level readings.
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