Techniques & benefits of a fruit wall

Lower costs and better vigor control make them attractive for high-density plantings.

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  • Clonal research takes years and money

Clonal research takes years and money

  • May 15th, 2010

UC staff member Jorge Osorio Aguilar weighs grapes from a Syrah clonal selection under test for San Joaquin Valley conditions.

To a grower, the right wine grape clone can improve yield, advance or delay ripening, and reduce susceptibility to rots. For a winemaker, the right clone can add complexity to [...]

  • Like firecrackers for the 4th of July

Like firecrackers for the 4th of July

  • May 15th, 2010

Hoxsie’s Farm Market is ideally located to serve a million tourists during the week of July 4—but he needs sweet cherries to attract them.

The National Cherry Festival drew a million people to Traverse City, Michigan, during the week starting July 4 last year, and, as the name says, it’s [...]

Grape clones: Learn by doing

  • May 15th, 2010

Without published research on which grape clones are best suited to Washington State conditions, growers must rely on the experiences and knowledge of others.

Washington growers are encouraged to do their own clonal trials to learn what works best on their site, but should be prepared for many years of [...]

The KGB revealed

  • May 15th, 2010

In the late 1990s, Oregon cherry growers began planting pedestrian orchards, utilizing training systems developed in Europe to grow small trees that could be harvested without ladders. For growers, the incentive to plant pedestrian orchards included higher early yields, potentially higher yields at maturity, easier maintenance, better spray penetration, [...]

  • Promoting ecolabel wines

Promoting ecolabel wines

  • May 1st, 2010
A program that began by certifying vineyards in Oregon’s Willamette Valley that were following practices to protect and restore salmon watersheds has grown to include more than half the wine grape acreage of Walla Walla Valley in Washington and Oregon and several vineyards in eastern Washington.

Sustainability: imposition or opportunity?

  • May 1st, 2010
With major food companies joining the green movement, a growing number of farmers are being asked questions about their sustainability efforts and/or programs. Growers can either view the movement as opportunity or imposition, says Dr. Cliff Ohmart.

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 [...]

  • Compost tea recipes

Compost tea recipes

  • May 1st, 2010

Tweaking the aeration time, handling, and changing additives can create diverse compost teas—even though they were made with the same compost. Washington State University researchers saw differences in the microbial organisms, nutrients, pH levels, and salt concentrations of compost teas that all started from the same compost and water.

CeCe [...]

What are compost teas?

  • May 1st, 2010

Compost teas have been promised by some companies to be a wonder-all product, protecting plants from disease, increasing growth, breaking down toxins in the soil, enhancing taste of fruits and vegetables, and more. Though few of the claims are supported by science, there may be something to learn from [...]

  • Getting trees off to a good start

Getting trees off to a good start

  • May 1st, 2010

This new planting, pictured at the end of the first season, started out as sleeping eyes and is irrigated with drip. Young trees need to be spoon-fed nutrients, and this can be accomplished through fertigation.

Once the trees are planted in a new orchard, there’s only a limited amount 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, [...]

  • 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 [...]