Industry Information

“An excellent plumber is infinitely more admirable than an incompetent philosopher. The society that scorns excellence in plumbing because plumbing is a humble activity, and tolerates shoddiness in philosophy because it is an exalted activity, will have neither good plumbing nor good philosophy. Neither its pipes nor its theories will hold water” - John W. Gardner

Nature of Industry Served

The Ontario tree fruit industry generates approximately $150 million of farm gate sales annually from a production area of ~15,000 hectares. This represents nearly 75% of the total farm value of all fruit crops in the province. There are nearly two thousand commercial apple, peach, cherry, and plum growers in Ontario, based in the primary production areas of the Niagara Peninsula, Georgian Bay, Eastern and Southwestern Ontario. The wide diversity of cultivars, soils, environmental conditions, and cultural practices create a unique and challenging blend of research needs. The industry requires a research programme that can help solve their more immediate cultural problems while simultaneously conducting strategic research which will advance the industry well into the next millennium. As the sole apple pomologist in the province, my research and extension interests and contacts are diverse. I take a broad approach to solving problems primarily related to managing modern intensive orchards planted with size-controlling rootstocks. Emphasis is placed on understanding the physiological processes influencing tree growth and production efficiency. The primary focus is to evaluate high-density orchard systems, dwarfing rootstocks, new cultivars, soil management and plant nutrition practices, and to develop fruit thinning techniques to optimize fruit size.

My personal goals in public outreach/extension are:

In Research to...

  • Concentrate on critical economic and environmental issues

  • Address emerging needs by developing a research programme that anticipates social and economic changes

  • Be creative and aspire towards academic excellence

  • Maximize available resources by collaborating with other and addressing key issues

  • Be innovative in problem solving

  • Value teamwork; recognize and support the contribution of one another.

In Extension to...

  • Engage people in their own learning and subsequent actions

  • Unite and extend the broad base of the University of Guelph

  • Educate with appropriate and effective techniques and methods

  • Value teamwork with Peers, OMAFRA extension, and Industry leaders; recognize and support the contribution of one another/

  • Help clientele solve problems and to develop problem-solving skills

  • Provide effective, practical, and timely advice

  • Be accessible

  • Help people help themselves

  • Provide unbiased delivery and impartiality of information

  • Conduct my work with honesty and integrity