New approaches to frost control

The height of the vines influences how they fare during cold weather.

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Defect sorting could reduce costs

  • January 15th, 2013

The Washington apple industry must be one of the few that puts every possible input into the product before throwing it away.

Paul Koch, general manager at Olympic Fruit Company in Yakima, Washington, says that’s what motivated him to install an electronic internal and external defect sorter. He hoped that [...]

  • The future of Rainier cherries

The future of Rainier cherries

The blush color of Rainier cherries sets the fruit apart in the marketplace. But color is also one of the cherry’s biggest challenges. Consumers must be educated that the light-colored cherries are sweet and ripe.

Production trends of Rainier and the early Rainier-type variety called Early Robin have shown steady [...]

  • Cider squeezing with the dragon

Cider squeezing with the dragon

  • January 15th, 2013

Developers put some teeth into their apple press.
Photo courtesy of Anderson Island Historical Society

The humble potato harvester, developed in the 1950s to scoop potatoes from the fields and into waiting trucks, has found other purposes.

The community of Anderson Island in Washington State’s Puget Sound has put an outdated [...]

  • Quick Bites

Quick Bites

  • January 15th, 2013

British are Smitten
Prevar Limited has licensed the rights to grow, market, and sell the Smitten apple in the United Kingdom to Worldwide Fruit Limited and Empire World Trade ­Limited.

Smitten (PremA17 cultivar) was bred by Plant and Food Research in New Zealand, which is contracted by Prevar to breed [...]

  • Red-fleshed apples

Red-fleshed apples

  • January 15th, 2013

The red trait, which is common in crab apples and ornamentals, produces flesh colored anywhere from pink to deep red. Skin color and flesh color are inherited separately, so yellow apples can have red flesh.
Photos courtesy of IFORED

Next Big Thing’s last big thing was the SweeTango apple. Now, [...]

  • Auction benefits research

Auction benefits research

  • January 15th, 2013

Washington State’s wine industry will receive a big windfall this year when the Auction of Washington Wines contributes nearly $250,000 for grape and wine-related research and education.

The donation was given to Washington State University for the viticulture and enology program. About $100,000 will be dedicated to research, with the [...]

  • First fruit

First fruit

  • January 1st, 2013

Bill Dodd stands next to the EverCrisp mother tree, which grows at the Doud family’s County Line Orchard near Wabash, Indiana.
photo courtesy of Bill Dodd

The first fruit of a grassroots apple breeding program is making its way into growers’ orchards.

EverCrisp apple trees are being sold this winter by [...]

  • Hello EverCrisp, goodbye Fuji?

Hello EverCrisp, goodbye Fuji?

  • January 1st, 2013

For Mitch Lynd, the introduction of EverCrisp apples into Midwestern growers’ orchards will probably mean they won’t plant Fuji in the future.

The new apple looks a lot like a Fuji, is sweet like a Fuji, matures late like a Fuji, and keeps like a Fuji. But it does not [...]

  • Packer finds his niche

Packer finds his niche

  • January 1st, 2013

Scott Smith stands in the first block of Jazz apples that he planted. The orchard in the distance has blocks of (from top) Skeena cherries, Sweetheart cherries, Barlett pears, and d’Anjou pears.
photos by Geraldine Warner

With more than 40 percent of his acreage in the New Zealand apple varieties [...]

Paternity test implicates Napoleon

Genetic testing has revealed that the blush cherry Napoleon Bigarreau (Napoleon for short) is the father of the Bing cherry. Black Republican, a red cherry, was known to be the mother variety, but the other parent (the source of the pollen) was unknown until now.

Dr. Amy Iezzoni, cherry breeder [...]

View new technologies in the making

  • January 1st, 2013

The public will have an opportunity to see what’s new in automated and precision farming technologies at the second annual Center for Precision and Automated Agricultural Systems Expo

The free event will take place October 8 from 1–3 p.m. at Washington State University’s Irrigated Agriculture Research and Extension Center in [...]

  • One-of-a-kind tower sprayer works for Quebec grower

One-of-a-kind tower sprayer works for Quebec grower

  • January 1st, 2013

This sleeve sprayer was custom-built for Fruiteraie des Gadbois based on research findings by agricultural engineer Bernard Panneton. Fans on top push air down through the sleeves, pushing spray dispensed from nozzles mounted outside the sleeves.
Photo by Richard Lehnert

Fruiteraie des Gadbois has another unique feature, a tower, or [...]