Farm Focus: Re-planting Early Variety Peaches & Nectarines
In the last couple of years, we've planted around 50 acres of new trees. Most of them are thriving, having gained height and vigor. But, there is always a small percentage, usually 2-3 percent of any planting, that don't make it. When you plant 50 acres, that small percentage adds up to a fair amount of trees, this year about 200.
Over the winter, Rachel goes through the farm with an orchard map to identify exactly where and which varieties of trees we we need to replant in order to create an order for the nursery and a planting plan. Typically, we replant during the winter months when we have more time available. The soil needs to be just right for planting - not so wet that it clumps and creates big air pockets, but not too dry either. This winter was way too wet to even think about planting. The ground is just drying out enough for this work. This means we have an extra busy spring since we are still in full on thinning mode (see Al's previous notes in April), getting our irrigation in working order, and coming into our first harvest of stone fruit!
It's a great thing Rachel is so detail-oriented and organized because she is getting our new trees in the ground with utmost efficiency and accuracy with a very small team so we can continue with our regularly scheduled seasonal work. Last week in just a few hours we re-planted several, new to Frog Hollow, late-season stone fruit varieties. These new varieties will extend our stone fruit season further into the late summer and fall once they come into production.
Thanks to Rachel, Virgilio, and our crew for juggling tasks to get these replants into the ground.