Sunday, 7 July 2019

Reflection on 2018 cherry harvest

It has been a year and a half since I have done a blog post. So here we are.
The following photos show parts of the 2018 cherry harvest, which went well for us. Our district is still in drought as discussed in previous post. The limited water that we had was just enough to grow the crop we did. In reflection the harvest had a goldilocks feel to it.

The drought conditions over late summer and autumn are the harshest I have seen in this district. Prospects for good rainfall over winter and spring are low. Time will tell as it always does.

Friday, 22 September 2017

All Things Being Equal

 Photos taken today on this spring equinox in the Southern Hemisphere. 
Cherry blossoms the bees have been busy doing their thing.




 Looking down some rows of cherries.



An ornamental weeping cherry below.

Peaches below.

 Apricots below

Still very dry in our district, mornings have remained cold. Have commenced drip irrigation through blossom period. Certainly not in our comfort zone, if such a thing exists. The season has good potential, but some good rain is what is needed. One thing I have learned over the years there are no ideal conditions there is just the reality of what is.
Best wishes to all.

Friday, 1 September 2017

Spring on a Calendar September 1

I took these photos today the first day of September.
An early start on a cold, foggy,frosty morning.

 Bees being placed in the orchard for pollination.
Mark helping the apiarist unload.

Some peach and nectarine blossom at the top of this block.
The last 3 months of Winter have been dry, well below average rain.
Winter started mild but is finishing cold and frosty as only a dry winter knows how.
Early stonefruit has been getting some frost damage.  

 Bud burst on these Royal Lynn cherries.

 Bee hives are placed in a few groups around the orchard.

  Empress cherries starting to bloom.

 Mark on the chainsaw as I prune behind him. 

 Pruning some Lapin cherries here.

It has been good to be working with my son Mark and
 to  be honest I would be lost without him.

Now waiting patiently for this season to unfold.
Blossom period is always a little dicey, but I guess the whole orcharding game is.
Best wishes to all.

Wednesday, 26 July 2017

July 26 2017 Cherry Tree Planting

Mark with some Royal Tioga Cherries, ready to plant. Self fertile, lower chill, approx 500 hours.
Perhaps a week before Royal Lynn or approx, the 10th of November in our district.

 Graham's Factree Victoria Australia

We make a good, quiet team working together. 

Heeling in above and looking down a row, below.

A lovely sunny day with a cool westerly blowing.

The dogs love working with us in the winter.

This orchard life, work, is like a rhythm, attention to detail, planning ahead, but in the day.
While planting trees with my son today I remembered planting trees with my father.
Best Wishes to all.

Monday, 3 July 2017

Pruning July 03/07/17

I have been pruning fruit trees since 1981 it is a long apprenticeship.

Apricot trees

Our youngest son Mark in some plum rows.

Mark standing next to some young cherries, Simone, on colt rootstock, planted 2015.
A good, productive variety for us.

Santina to the left, Black Star to the right on colt rootstock planted 2010

Standing next to cherries, Royal Hazel on colt rootstock, planted 2013
Royal Hazel and Royal Lynn seem impressive, planting some Royal Tiago this winter.

Royal Hazel here again, above and below

In winter 1981 I first came to see this orchard with my father,
There was a cold wind blowing and it seemed unwelcoming. His dream was to grow fruit here and sell it direct to people traveling on the New England Highway. I feel proud of the farm gate sales that we have developed over the years. I have seen a lot of changes over this time, yet  a lot of things remain the same. Growing fruit is not a perfect thing and the weather is a hard task master, but I guess that it has taught me to except my own imperfections.

Best Wishes to all.