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  • Alfredo Jeronimo, young grower on December 6, 2016, in Wenatchee, Washington. (TJ Mullinax/Good Fruit Grower)

Alfredo Jeronimo, a young grower from Wenatchee, Washington

February 16th, 2017|0 Comments

Alfredo grew up working in orchards alongside his father. After starting a family, Alfredo followed his interests in the packing side of the industry and is currently pursuing goals in orchard management.

  • Head

Understanding the click pruning technique – Video

February 15th, 2017|0 Comments

Pruning technique puts physiology to work, gets sap flowing to reduce blind wood and manage vigor.

  • Lamont Fruit Farm

Is your orchard robot ready? – Video

February 15th, 2017|0 Comments

Industry leaders break out crystal ball to help growers prepare for ‘game changers.’

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Second day of wine grape grower meetings focuses on farming by phenology

February 8th, 2017|0 Comments

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As a snowstorm raged outside, attendees at the Washington Winegrowers conference in Kennewick, Washington were eager to talk about spring and the arrival of warmer weather during the Wednesday session on Farming by Phenology.

Irrigation, pest and disease control, and even labor management can benefit from paying close attention to the

  • Chris Oakes, Young Grower

Chris Oakes, Young Grower from Lyndonville, New York

February 1st, 2017|0 Comments

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family background/ Chris is a fourth-generation farmer who works with many of his relatives along Lake Ontario. He’s learned from his grandfather James and father, Darrel, that being active in industry groups and extension agriculture programs has helped them to adopt new growing techniques and to diversify the farm’s crops.
age/

  • Cleaning and sanitation workshop

Compliance countdown: Getting ready for next year’s food safety regulations

January 20th, 2017|0 Comments

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Inspections under the Food Safety Modernization Act are coming to orchards and packing plants in 2018 and, with just a year to go, many facilities still aren’t sure how to demonstrate compliance.

That makes this year key for figuring out what aspects of the regulations apply to your operation as well

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Year after year, the striking images on our covers live on

January 19th, 2017|0 Comments

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It’s that time of year again when we’ll be visiting your mailbox more often. From now through May, you’ll receive new issues of Good Fruit Grower twice a month.

It’s during this stretch of what we call “double issues” where we deliver the latest research and updates on crucial topics like

  • Ariane Stechmann

Ariane Stechmann, Young Grower from Hamburg, Germany

January 19th, 2017|0 Comments

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family background / Ariane is the oldest of four siblings who make up the family’s 10th generation of farmers. To help in preparation for future transition of the farm, she earned her horticulture degree, interned with the Washington Tree Fruit Research Commission (WTFRC), and plans to work with her parents,

  • Agriculture in Havana Cuba

Cuban farms: Making virtue from necessity

January 11th, 2017|0 Comments

Shortages of fuel, chemicals and machinery make Cuban farms organic but not efficient.

  • Agriculture in Havana Cuba

Cuba’s next chapter? Not so fast

January 11th, 2017|0 Comments

Politics and Cuba’s own challenges make the island a distant prospect for tree fruit growers.

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Nick Ferrari, Young Grower from Linden, California

December 30th, 2016|1 Comment

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family background/ Fourth-generation farmer in the San Joaquin Valley. Nick has volunteered with several young grower groups and is involved with converting older walnut orchards to new variety cherry blocks.
age/ 31
grower/ Linden, California
crops/ Cherries and walnuts
business/ Ferrari Brothers Properties

How did you get your start?
The farm is what I grew up

  • Gizdich Ranch and Martinelli's

Coastal California apple growers hold on through relationship with Martinelli’s

December 28th, 2016|0 Comments

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One hundred years ago, Watsonville, California, was one of the apple leaders of the world, shipping fruit around the globe, supporting dozens of local packing sheds and giving rise to Martinelli’s, arguably the most famous sparkling apple cider producer in the United States.

Nowadays, Martinelli’s is practically the only reason there

  • Head

Tracking fire blight

December 23rd, 2016|0 Comments

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This past summer, a team of researchers armed with scissors walked through a North Central Washington apple orchard and did the unthinkable: They inoculated 1,600 trees with fire blight.

They’re not aiming to wipe out an orchard. Rather, they’re trying to identify the genes responsible for fire blight resistance in different

  • 2016-video-sessions

Watch this year’s Hort Show video summaries

December 9th, 2016|0 Comments

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Day two of the WSTFA annual meeting, afternoon summary – Video

December 6th, 2016|0 Comments

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Researchers are still working to get the word out to the industry about the requirements for growers and packers of the Food Safety Modernization Act, which made it a key topic at the Washington State Tree Fruit Association annual meeting.

Marc Verhougstreate, assistant professor at the University of Arizona, shared some

  • 112th Annual Meeting and Northwest Hort Expo

Day two of the WSTFA annual meeting, morning summary – Videos

December 6th, 2016|0 Comments

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Technology and mechanization led the topics for the second day at the Washington State Tree Fruit Association’s annual meeting.

In a morning session, researchers provided updates on their trials with new dwarfing cherry rootstocks, apple rootstocks and development of pear rootstocks, a program for which is just getting underway. Trellis engineering

  • cosmiccrisphortshowpanel2016

Wrapping up day one of the WSTFA annual meeting – Video

December 5th, 2016|0 Comments

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Two words can sum up Monday afternoon’s session of the 112th annual meeting of the Washington State Tree Fruit Association: Cosmic Crisp.

Washington growers will begin the first plantings of the new Washington State University variety WA 38, which will be known commercially as Cosmic Crisp.

More than 600,000 trees are expected

  • 112th Annual Meeting and Northwest Hort Expo

Day 1, Washington hort show, morning summary – Video

December 5th, 2016|0 Comments

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Speakers hammered away at the theme of “change” to kick off the 112th annual meeting of the Washington tree fruit industry.

Change in a U.S. president. Change in technology. Change in food safety regulations. Change in customer shopping habits.

“Change comes no matter how long we ignore it,” said Sam Godwin, chairman

  • Bill and Mark Zirkle, 2016 Growers of the Year

A succession story: 2016 Growers of the year

December 1st, 2016|0 Comments

Bill and Mark Zirkle credit teamwork for company’s growth and fruitful legacy.

  • Jesus Ramos at Cold Creek Vineyard

Jesus Ramos, Young Grower from Royal City, Washington

November 29th, 2016|0 Comments

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family background/ Jesus, son of Javier and Irma Ramos, is the first in his immediate family to attend high school and college. He earned an undergraduate degree in plant sciences, viticulture and enology from Washington State University. He is currently working on a master’s degree in agriculture sciences, focusing on

  • Drone work at Adelsheim Vineyard

Oregon viticulturist tests, uses drone technology — Video

November 22nd, 2016|0 Comments

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Chad Vargas demonstrates his modified DJI Phantom 4 drone from the back of his truck. (TJ Mullinax/Good Fruit Grower)

Chad Vargas bought a drone just as an experiment, but he’s using it for all sorts of chores on his Newberg, Oregon, vineyard.

He uses the DJI Phantom 4 quadcopter to measure slopes,

  • Cornell researcher highlights need for precision spray

Spraying with precision — Video

November 18th, 2016|0 Comments

Cornell researcher offers tips for making your grandfather’s sprayer more effective, but says precision sprayers are the future.

  • Matson automated apple cold storage facility

Matson leads industry in automated cold storage technology — Video

November 17th, 2016|0 Comments

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Pallets stand five racks high, cramped, dark and sci-fi eerie. Robotic cranes, guided by lasers and bar codes, retrieve the pallets while automatic dollies on a looped track wheel them to and from a web of scaffolding.

No need for people in the catacombs of Matson Fruit’s cold storage warehouse in

  • Matson automated apple cold storage facility

Ag drone future’s up in the air — Video

November 9th, 2016|1 Comment

Even with recent advancements, drones are not quite ready for optimal use in the tree fruit industry.

  • Abundant Robotics automated vacuum harvester

The long and tricky path to automated picking — Video

October 30th, 2016|0 Comments

Vacuum picker under development brings the apple industry closer than ever to automating harvest.

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Growers who innovate in the Golden State

October 28th, 2016|0 Comments

California apple growers hang in there and invest with focus on fresh market.

  • Cuyama Valley apples

The solitary orchard

October 25th, 2016|0 Comments

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Byron Albano is one of the southernmost apple growers on the West Coast but has a late season. He has plenty of water but no surface irrigation.

He lives in the Los Angeles suburbs but farms in a remote mountain hideaway.

“One of the things I love out here is your cell

  • Wafler Huron Fruit System

The tech advantage of digital oversight – Video

September 1st, 2016|0 Comments

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Wafler Farms wanted to do more than just mechanize tasks on the farm.

Paul Wafler also wanted to be able to monitor the progress and location of the farm’s own Huron Fruit Systems platform in the orchard, as well as track yields and worker performance.

He wants the orchards running like a

  • Jared Gidley, young grower

Jared Gidley, Young Grower from Parkdale, Oregon

September 1st, 2016|0 Comments

Jared is a first-generation farmer who worked several orchard jobs growing up in Parkdale, Oregon.