New approaches to frost control

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

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  • 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 [...]

  • New research orchard structures

New research orchard structures

  • December 1st, 2012

Cravo roof in a closed position.
PHOTO COURTESY OF CRAVO

New protected orchard structures were installed last spring at Michigan State University’s horticultural research station at Clarksville. They were built over a 2010 planting of high-density sweet cherries and will be used in at least three research projects.

MSU cherry researcher [...]

  • Cherries as berries

Cherries as berries

  • December 1st, 2012

The Korvan 7240 blueberry harvester was first demonstrated at the Clarksville Horticulture Experiment Station by Michigan State University’s team at the start of the research project in July 2008.

Some Michigan tart cherry growers are not waiting for the final research results to come in and are instead plunging ahead [...]

  • Eradication not likely

Eradication not likely

  • December 1st, 2012

The light brown apple moth is about a quarter of an inch long.
PHOTO BY R. ANSON EAGLIN, USDA APHIS

State and federal officials, and growers and homeowners, in California have settled in for a long, contentious battle with light brown apple moth, an invasive leaf-rolling insect found there since [...]

Over-the-row research

  • December 1st, 2012

Research evaluating over-the-row tart cherry harvesting was funded in 2008 as a five-year project by USDA’s Research, Education, and Economics Information System.

Headed by Michigan State University horticulturist Dr. Ron Perry, it involves other MSU researchers: cherry breeder Dr. Amy Iezzoni; Dr. Greg Lang, who studies cherry orchard design and [...]

  • Last Bite: Cox pipped out by Gala

Last Bite: Cox pipped out by Gala

  • December 1st, 2012

Cox’s Orange Pippin is a firm, juicy, full-flavored apple with an orange-red skin and cream-colored flesh.
Photo by Jacqueline King, WSU

Cox’s Orange Pippin—Britain’s favorite apple for 150 years or so—has been usurped by Gala, one of its grandchildren.

It’s not because Gala is a better apple, British journalist Michael Leapman [...]

The back story

  • December 1st, 2012

After the fall of communism in Eastern Europe and the breach of the Berlin Wall in 1989, countries like East Germany and Poland were re-integrated into a world where machine technology was much preferred to human labor.

In some cases, in the process of “catching up” with the West, they [...]

  • Red’s not dead

Red’s not dead

  • December 1st, 2012

Photo by Melissa Hansen

For the past 30 years, Red Delicious has been the poor relation of the apple family. Although all varieties of apples have been profitable in recent years, Red Delicious is still close to the bottom of the list in terms of f.o.b. prices.

Last season, the average [...]

  • Cherry enterprise budgets available

Cherry enterprise budgets available

  • December 1st, 2012

Mike Omeg reminds growers not to get too hung up on the specifics.
Photo by Geraldine Warner

Oregon State University agricultural economists recently updated enterprise budgets for both standard and high-­density sweet cherry orchard systems. Enterprise budgets are designed to help growers estimate actual costs and review individual production costs [...]

  • Salish launched in B.C.

Salish launched in B.C.

  • December 1st, 2012

Courtesy of Rich MacDonald (AAFC)

A new apple variety from British Columbia, Canada, called Salish was launched in the marketplace this fall under a new brand called “Born in BC, Raised in the Okanagan.”

Salish (formerly known as SPA493) originated from a cross of Splendour and Gala made in 1981 at [...]

Use AgProfit to customize data

  • December 1st, 2012

The high-density orchard establishment study and the enterprise budgets are designed to work with AgProfit, a computer software program developed by Oregon State University, Washington State University, University of Arizona, and the University of ­California. AgProfit, a Windows-based program, allows growers to plug in their own data or use [...]

  • The dark side of Honeycrisp

The dark side of Honeycrisp

  • December 1st, 2012

Honeycrisp apples have outstanding flavor and texture, but the tree has a long list of characteristics that make it challenging, expensive, and frustrating to grow.

Because the variety is extremely prone to bitter pit, growers are applying calcium sprays season long and minimizing nitrogen fertilizer. Jason Matson at Matson Fruit [...]