How to harvest and store WA 38 (Cosmic Crisp) apples

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  • High density apple systems cost more

High density apple systems cost more

  • August 1st, 2010

The Michigan study compared three systems—from left, central leader, vertical axe, and tall spindle.

It costs a lot of money to put in a new apple orchard in Michigan, and it takes 9 to 12 years to recover all the expenses incurred up until then. High density systems cost more [...]

  • China: big country, small wine market

China: big country, small wine market

  • August 1st, 2010

Wine importer and distributor Scott Hitchcock, left, sampled Butch Milbrandt’s wines (Milbrandt Vineyards) during the Washington Wine Commission’s Wine Experience. Hitchcock came to learn about the potential of importing Washington wines into China.

China and its 1.4 billion population is one of the world’s largest markets for many products. For [...]

  • New York growers join the club

New York growers join the club

  • July 1st, 2010

New York 1 is a Honeycrisp offspring without many of its flaws, and New York growers indicate they want to plant it.

In announcing its formation last August, NYAG LLC, also known as New York Apple Growers, set out a game plan for a managed variety “club” made up of [...]

  • NEW APPLE is first of many

NEW APPLE is first of many

  • July 1st, 2010

About 130 Washington growers are evaluating WSU’s first apple, WA 2, in their orchards.

Soon, Washington State growers are going to have a wide choice of new apple varieties to grow, all of which are being developed specifically for them.

Washington State University has released the first two varieties from its [...]

Antibiotic on organic sunset list

  • July 1st, 2010

Organic tree fruit growers in the Pacific Northwest are concerned that the National Organic Standards Board might drop its approval of the antibiotic Mycoshield (oxytetracycline or tetracycline) for organic production in 2012. The product is used to manage fireblight in apples and pears.

The NOSB has a list of more [...]

  • Apple growers need good niche apples

Apple growers need good niche apples

  • July 1st, 2010

Nothing adds spice to a horticulture meeting like a discussion of new, upcoming, promising apple varieties.

Some growers—those depending on commercial packing houses and wholesale distribution—may be looking for that one new variety that could someday transform the industry. Honeycrisp comes to mind.

Growers who have more direct access to local [...]

  • A grower reaches out to consumers

A grower reaches out to consumers

  • July 1st, 2010

Rosa Lynn is a chance seedling discovered on Washington’s Royal Slope. The fruit stores well.

If you discover an exciting new apple variety and want it to succeed, it’s going to take more than just delivering it to the warehouse, a marketer says.

Dain Craver has been traveling the country promoting [...]

  • Pox-resistant plum registered

Pox-resistant plum registered

  • July 1st, 2010

The HoneySweet plum is sweet and flavorful and highly resistant to the plum pox virus.

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has announced its conditional registration of a plum pox virus resistance gene contained in a new plum variety called HoneySweet.

Dr. Ralph Scorza, research horticulturist at the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s [...]

  • Overcoming ripeness challenges

Overcoming ripeness challenges

  • July 1st, 2010

Crews should be instructed to clean out spur congestion, as shown by the pocket knife, during pruning.

With few perfect vineyards in the world, growers must learn how to manage what they have to achieve grape maturity. By zeroing in on canopy, irrigation, and crop management strategies, underperforming or problematic [...]

  • Avoid hazards when choosing cherries to plant

Avoid hazards when choosing cherries to plant

  • July 1st, 2010

Early Robin has the potential of meeting the demand for an early harvest Rainier-type cherry.

Twenty years ago, fresh cherry producers in the Pacific Northwest were limited in their variety choices to primarily Bing and Rainier. Now, however, there is a plethora of available varieties with more appearing all the [...]

Getting it ripe

  • July 1st, 2010

The following viticulture strategies are recommended by Hogue Ranches and Mercer Estates’ Rick ­Hamman to help growers ripen wine grapes in eastern ­Washington Stat

Trellis for quality sunlight and mechanization. Use modified vertical shoot position system with east canopy wires only positioned, or use three-wire fixed vertical shoot position system, [...]

  • When are grapes ripe?

When are grapes ripe?

  • July 1st, 2010

The dimpling on these wine grapes is from dehydration, which can occur during extended hang time on the vine. Research has shown that for every two degrees above 26 Brix, yield is decreased by 10 percent.

One of the most contentious areas between a wine grape grower and winemaker is [...]