New approaches to frost control

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

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  • 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 [...]

Good Point

  • December 1st, 2012

As a tree fruit grower in Washington State, you are involved in a risky business. Some years the dice roll your way, some they don’t. Managing your risk isn’t getting any easier, and every year seems to bring a new set of challenges, some biological, some regulatory, some market-based, [...]

  • 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 [...]

Organic trade association seeks input

  • December 1st, 2012

The Organic Trade Association is holding town-hall forums across the country to gather industry thoughts about the association’s proposal to establish a federal organic research and promotion order.

One such forum will be held during the Washington State Horticultural Association’s annual meeting in Yakima at the end of the afternoon [...]

  • Good to Know—What growers want in new varieties

Good to Know—What growers want in new varieties

  • November 1st, 2012

Adopting a new scion cultivar is a crucial decision for tree fruit growers, who must consider both horticultural and market performance. Apple growers have mostly figured out how to produce high yields of excellent quality fruit for many standard varieties like Red Delicious, Golden Delicious, and Empire, but market [...]

  • Last Bite

Last Bite

  • November 1st, 2012

Winemaking in France is believed to date back at least 2,600 years to the ­founding of Massilia, the city now known as Marseille. So it’s logical to think that Cabernet Sauvignon, one of the most important wine grape varieties in France’s Bordeaux region and the world, would also have [...]

  • Research project tackles trunk diseases

Research project tackles trunk diseases

  • November 1st, 2012

Researchers will use nearly $1.8 million in grant money to develop new detection, extension, and research tools for managing wood-canker diseases of grapes and nut crops. Wood-canker diseases are a leading cause of vineyard and orchard removal in many parts of the country.

The research project was one of 14 [...]

  • Weather forecasting tested

Weather forecasting tested

  • November 1st, 2012

Washington State University’s automated weather station network, is testing a national forecasting model as a tool to predict weather systems, such as hail or freezes, in the state’s tree fruit and grape growing regions.

AgWeatherNet, a network of 137 automated weather stations across Washington State, provides current weather conditions updated [...]

How cold hardy?

  • November 1st, 2012

Washington State University scientists hope to find a better way to assess cold hardiness of apple and sweet cherry buds and blooms in early spring.

Crop resistance to freezing temperatures depends on the stage of bud development, and this makes it difficult for growers to know when to protect their [...]

  • Machines in Quebec

Machines in Quebec

  • November 1st, 2012

Apple growers in Canada’s Quebec Province aren’t having the labor problems U.S. growers have. They have access to Hispanic workers from Central America through a federal program, much like the U.S. H-2A guest-worker program, and it apparently functions more effectively.

Quebec growers aren’t complaining about labor quantity or quality, but [...]

  • Yeast tested as lure

Yeast tested as lure

  • November 1st, 2012

A species of yeast that University of California scientists have found in cherries and raspberries infested by the spotted wing drosophila could play a role in developing better lures to detect the pest.
The spotted wing drosophila, a pest that originated in Asia, first invaded ­California in 2008. If [...]

  • Automated crop estimating

Automated crop estimating

  • November 1st, 2012

Robotics experts at Carnegie Mellon University in Pennsylvania are confident they can develop a machine able to count apples in orchards in order to provide growers with accurate crop estimates and yield maps. And it may be ­feasible for the machine to estimate the size of the apples.

Dr. Stephen [...]