Growers surveyed on pest practices

  • May 1st, 2010

Washington apple growers are adopting new pest ­management strategies and technologies including safer chemistries, in accordance with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency phaseout of ­azinphos-methyl (AZM-Guthion) in tree fruits. Because the new chemistries require more precise timing and better spray coverage, use of predictive models and improved application delivery [...]

  • Meeting the organic challenge

Meeting the organic challenge

  • May 1st, 2010

Harry and Jackie Hoch (center) gather in their orchard for a family photo on Easter weekend, where unusual 80-degree weather advanced the season, requiring sprays for disease control on the apricots and plums. With them are Harry’s mother, Jackie Senior, and their daughters Missy (far left) and Angi.
Photo [...]

  • Woolly apple aphid

Woolly apple aphid

  • May 1st, 2010

Syrphid fly larvae attack woolly apple aphids.

The woolly apple aphid overwinters as a nymph on the roots of apple trees, but can also overwinter on the aboveground part of the tree in protected areas on the trunk or main limbs.

In the spring, overwintering aphids produce live young that migrate [...]

  • Good Job

Good Job

  • May 1st, 2010

Apple Blossom Queen Margaret Robinson presented a plaque to WSU Extension Educator Tim Smith when he was named Apple Citizen of the Year 2010.

Tim Smith is Apple Citizen of the Year
Tim Smith, a Washington State University Extension educator for the past 25 years, has been named Apple Citizen of [...]

  • Solving the woolly apple aphid

Solving the woolly apple aphid

  • May 1st, 2010

Washington Fruit and Produce Company planted alyssum between the rows of this new orchard to attract syrphid flies, which are good predators of woolly apple aphid.

Dain Craver’s plan to produce potted apple trees to sell to city residents was almost derailed by a bad infestation of woolly apple aphids.

Craver, [...]

Eye on the Middle East

  • April 15th, 2010

Dubai, one of the United Arab Emirates, is the major fruit import port in the Persian Gulf with its trade tentacles reaching to Yemen in the south, Iraq in the north, and Sudan in the west. It’s difficult to separate out ­specific countries as independent and uninfluenced by the [...]

  • Last Bite – Pioneer of exports to Europe

Last Bite – Pioneer of exports to Europe

  • April 15th, 2010

The firm of Simons, Shuttleworth, and French Company, Inc., was one of the first to specialize in exporting apples from the Pacific Northwest to England and the European continent.

The company was organized under the laws of the State of New York in 1907 and formally incorporated in 1908. The [...]

  • Renewal on the Ridge

Renewal on the Ridge

  • April 15th, 2010

Orchardists on Fruit Ridge northwest of Grand Rapids, Michigan, suffered mightily when the market for processing apples weakened in the last decade of the twentieth century, and it looked like the damage might be permanent.

Real estate developers jumped on the best sites, putting houses on the tops of these [...]

  • A remedy for blind wood

A remedy for blind wood

  • April 15th, 2010

The branches of this young Fuji tree suffer from blind wood.

Blind wood is a growth characteristic of certain fruit varieties, where buds at the basal ends of shoots remain dormant or blind. Apple varieties such as Granny Smith and Fuji and the pear variety Beurre Bosc suffer badly from [...]

  • Effective fruit thinning

Effective fruit thinning

  • April 15th, 2010

To evaluate thinning effectiveness using the “fruitlet model,” individual apples must be labeled and measured two or three times to assess their rate of growth.

While chemical fruit thinners can work fairly well on apples, the thinning effect is variable year to year.

Growers are reluctant to make repeated thinner applications [...]

  • Apples from the prairie

Apples from the prairie

  • April 1st, 2010

Autumn Delight (right photo) and Misty Rose.

Three apple cultivars released by the University of Saskatchewan fruit breeding program are being recommended for commercial production in that prairie province this year, according to fruit breeder Dr. Bob Bors. They are Autumn Delight, Prairie Sensation, and Misty Rose.

Autumn Delight (top photo [...]

  • Retrofitting an apple packing line

Retrofitting an apple packing line

  • April 1st, 2010

A Yakima, Washington, grower-packer operation wanted to upgrade its optical sorting capability but didn’t want to make expensive changes to the entire line. By retrofitting the outdated optics with a new system, color and size grade adjustments can now be made quickly with a few computer keystrokes.

Mike Saunders, Apple [...]