Devin Jell, of Sun-Oka Fruit Farms in Summerland, British Columbia, won the award for the heaviest apple at the Royal Agricultural Winter Fair in Toronto, Ontario, in November, with a Jonagold weighing almost two pounds. Jell also placed first in the Granny Smith and Ambrosia variety classes.
Jell has been farming his 26-acre, high-density apple orchard for seven years. His family has been growing in the Summerland area for more than 120 years and has been competing in fruit competitions for a century. He grows Honeycrisp, Ambrosia, Aurora, Granny Smith, and Pink Lady.
Other B.C. growers also took top honors. Keith Johnson, winner of the Aurora class, was also named Reserve Champion for the new variety classes. David and Arlene Sloan of Matheson Creek Farms, Okanagan Falls, won the “other new variety” class with their Pinova; Billy and Shauma Boerboon of Windmill Orchards, Summerland, won the Jonagold class; and Peter Simonsen, a certified organic grower at Northern Lights Orchard in Naramata had the best Golden Delicious apples.