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Department of Fruit-Growing

History and development


There was no much interest in fruit production on the area of east Croatia in the past. Fruit trees were placed mostly in the gardens around the houses without necessary agro and pomotechnical care. That production of fruits was not profitable and fruits were used for self-consumption.

The most important year in advancement of fruit production was 1947, when Mr. Josip Marinović founded the Osijek Fruit Nursery (todays Department of Fruit Production). It was the beginning of modern fruit production in this area. The experts of Osijek Fruit Nursery planted modern commercial orchard, introduced new varietes and rootstocks and established mother tree blocks which provided propagation material (grafts and rootstocks) for fruit plants production. There was established, for the fist time, the Book of Mother Plants which was describing varietes and rootstocks in nursery production. A few years after the Osijek Fruit Nursery was founded, the production of fruit plants reached over 400 000 peaces which were distributed all over the region of former Yugoslavia. The Osijek Fruit Nursery won the first prize on the First exibition of fruit plants in Croatia that was hold in the year of 1955.

The Osijek Fruit Nursery co-operated with scientific institutions such as Faculty Agriculture of Zagreb, Institute of Plant Protection in Zagreb, Institute of Fruit Production in Zagreb, etc. The co-operation of Osijek Fruit Nursery with above-mentioned institutions resulted in establishing experimental orchard, results of which were used in raising orchards like Borinci in Vinkovci and some school orchards in Velika Kopanica, Trnava, Donji Miholjac, etc. The Osijek Fruit Nursery initiated foundation of Society of Fruit and Grape Growers which provided fruit plants, pesticide and knowledge for successful, modern and profitable fruit production.

The Osijek Fruit Nursery was integrated into the Agricultural Institute Osijek in 1966. The experts of the Osijek Fruit Nursery planted new hectares of apples, pears, plums, cherry, sour cherry, peaches and other deciduous fruit trees. In the 1980s the orchard and nursery production involved the area of more than 150 hectares. During that time, there were many researching projects. One of the most famous project was that of pears mineral nutritition. There were established clonal selection and breeding programs of pears, apples, sour cherry and hazelnut. During the war in the early 1990s, the Osijek Fruit Nursery suffered a huge war demage. There was first line of defense of the City of Osijek. Today, 13 years latter, there are still a lot of mine fields. The Osijek Fruit Nursery changed its name into the Department of Fruit Production in the year of 1995.

Department of Fruit-Growing - Images