Jan. 03, 2018

December Orchard Update

Winter visited Eastern Washington just in time to deliver a white Christmas to the Superfresh Growers® orchards. Dave Gleason, Chief Horticulturist, and Parker Sherrell, Pre-Production Manager, discuss the transition from old to new orchards. This transition started soon after harvest and will be a primary task through winter as the team prepares for spring planting.

“When I was young, trees were huge old dinosaurs,” explains Gleason. “They were ginormous trees that might have limbs a foot in diameter. It could take 10-15 years to grow the tree to fill the space.” Growing tree fruit is more expensive now, and Superfresh Growers is transitioning from “dinosaur trees” to new trellis systems that are both cost and time efficient.

Sherrell discusses the process of the new trellis system, which includes planting the poles first, before spring planting, which is reverse from what has been done in the past. This new system allows for the Superfresh team to install a rigid and more intricate trellis system that will support a bi-ax growing system where “two primary leaders come from one root.” This new trellis system is designed to support eight trees in a 32 foot space, which would previously host two large dinosaur trees.

As the Superfresh Growers team continues to update and innovate, they wish all season’s greetings and a happy new year.