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Pest control costs are rising for tart cherry growers

Preliminary figures indicate a $265 per acre rise, compared to a 2010 survey.

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Season-long mildew control?

A build-up of spores after harvest can increase disease pressure the next year.

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I’m Cosmic Crisp, says apple formerly known as WA 38

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Clarification appended.

The much anticipated WA 38 apple variety will go by the brand name Cosmic Crisp, Washington State University announced today.

The university also unveiled a new web page for the variety.

The name derives from little

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California cherry packers ready for new lines

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Two northern California cherry packers are using new grading and sorting technology for the 2014 cherry season. Both held open houses in April to show off the new equipment to growers and industry members.

Rivermaid Trading

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Sweet cherry health connection

Health research is a priority for the Northwest Cherry Growers.

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New prairie cherry varieties making an impact

Tart cherries from Saskatchewan are still on track to play larger role.

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New pest has racing stripes

The African fig fly, a relative of the spotted wing drosophila, is bigger and more competitive.

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Club apples are in demand

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Twenty years ago, Red Delicious apple production peaked in Washington at more than 60 million packed boxes. Just three varieties—Red and Golden Delicious and Granny Smith—accounted for 90 percent of the total crop.

Since then, Washington’s

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Beyond Honeycrisp

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A number of new varieties that are coming to market are being touted as being better than Honeycrisp.

Pazazz, a variety developed by Doug Shelfelbine in his private breeding program in Wisconsin, originated from an open-pollinated

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New grape virus in Washington

Don’t assume that red leaves mean grapevine leafroll virus — they could be symptoms of a new disease.

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High-tech cherry packing facility debuts

New plant doubles the cherry volume for Washington Fruit.

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New cherry bags boost sales

The new consumer bags protect fruit better and allow high-definition graphics, but are more costly to pack.

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Thinning apples with more confidence

Apple thinning gets more predictable as scientists gain understanding.

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Technology is the future of cherry packing

West Coast cherry packers are quickly adopting new sorting technology.

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Harvesting the light to drive production

Fruit growers have gotten much better at it during the last 40 years.

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A-Mazing new technology

Novel spraying system is incorporated into a maze built of rows of apple trees.

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Four decades of tree fruit discovery

The last 40 years have been fruitful generators of solid fruit tree knowledge.

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Opal apple verified as non-GMO

FirstFruits seeks to head off confusion with a GMO apple that might be approved.

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Nematode management strategies

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Preplant soil fumigation has long been an effective way to control nematodes, but fumigation in the future may be limited, says Dr. Inga Zasada, U.S. Department of Agriculture scientist.

She offers the following suggestions to help

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Is fresh best?

Study shows processed fruits and vegetables can be a good option.

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Nematode-resistant rootstocks available

Improved rootstocks are available, though more field testing is needed.

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New approach needed for nematodes

Avoid white varieties if planting in a site with root knot nematodes.

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Cornell asks growers for info on stinkbugs affecting crops

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Cornell University, New York, is asking growers to complete an online survey of how stinkbugs are affecting crops.

The university is surveying growers to assess the impact of the brown marmorated stinkbug on crops and is

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New clothing material may better protect workers

Study looks at lightweight, Teflon-like material might have potential for protective clothing for pesticide applicators.

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Nurseries fund East Malling research

The International New-Varieties Network has committed to provide more than $672,000 over the next six years to support apple and pear rootstock research at East Malling Research in Kent, England.

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Grower focuses on one variety, one market

If fruit doesn’t meet gift grade quality, it may be left on the tree.

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Evaluating technology for orchard use

New orchard technologies must be compatible with high production, said grower Jerry Haak.

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Be careful in adopting summer hedging to build fruiting walls

A Pennsylvania researcher warns growers south of New York, where trees grow more vigorously, that they might want to take a cautious approach on adoption of summer pruning and shearing to create fruiting walls.

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New tests measure soil health

New measuring tests allow growers to track the impact of soil management changes.

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Four reasons to manage the orchard floor

Several forces at work suggest that orchardists should look more closely at how they manage the floors of their orchards and vineyards.

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Calculate target yield

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Many factors contribute to the profitability of an orchard. The two most important factors are marketable yield per hectare and the price received for the fruit. Early yields also have a big impact on profitability

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Herbicide-resistance raises concerns

Specialty crops growers, especially those who grow grapes, will have new cause for concern in 2015 when new genetically modified field crops are expected to come to fields near their orchards and vineyards.

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Pay attention to the soil

Growers should pay more attention to the soil.

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Organic matter that lasts

Tree fruit growers may one day have a new way to dramatically improve soil quality in low-organic-matter soils. Imagine being able to add organic matter that will last thousands of years, essentially permanently affecting soil tilth and structure, instead of the few years you can get using cover crops and mulches. The “new” form of organic material is called biochar.

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Which is better for growing apples, angled or upright?

Growers and researchers weigh in.

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Honeycrisp: Grow it, then crop it

Although growers want to reap early returns from their Honeycrisp plantings, they need to let the trees grow first.

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Spreading shoots of young apple trees

Proper spreading of shoots and branches is an important step in developing a productive orchard.

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Choose the right rootstock for Honeycrisp

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The ideal rootstock for Honeycrisp is one that promotes moderate tree vigor along with good productivity, says Dr. Terence Robinson, horticulturist at Cornell University, New York.

Many growers who are using the precocious dwarfing Malling 9

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Electric orchard equipment progress

Orchardists are showing interest in electric power, and it’s coming, slowly.

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The good and bad of deficit irrigation

Partial root zone drying deficit irrigation has potential for white varieties.

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Opal apple verified non-GMO

FirstFruits heads off confusion with a GMO-apple that might be approved.

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Microsprinklers for frost protection

Capturing the orchard heating power of freezing water.

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Growers benefit from Smith’s work

Tim Smith’s research has put money back in growers’ pockets.

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DIY spray trial tips

On-farm trials don’t have to be complicated.

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Integrated water plan moves forward

Diverse group proposes plan to solve water shortages in the Yakima River Basin.

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How to make every drop count

Simple changes made with inexpensive tools can greatly improve spray applications.

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Extension is 100 years old… and counting

With additional funding and new faculty, WSU extension is not resting on its laurels.

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Grafting workshop planned for early April

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Washington State University is offering a tree fruit grafting class by tree fruit specialist Gary Moulton in the second week of April. The two-part, hands-on workshop, held on April 9 and 12, focuses on steps

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Rootstocks do fine in Washington

Differences in rootstock trial were due to yearly climate variation, not rootstocks.

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Wine grape yields not affected by early leaf removal

Early leaf removal in white grape varieties has several benefits.

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