April 21, 2015.
We are extremely busy at the farm now. We all worked hard to plant 2 acres of peaches at Lisa and Ward’s place just a half mile south of our apple farm late last week. Soil conditions were good and the weather was perfect. We continue to plant apples as well in the blocks that will allow it. We do not like to plant in overly wet soils. This is not good for the long term health of the trees. In the next month we will plant our raspberries. It is best to wait till mid-May to plant these.
This is a critical week to prevent scab infections in the apples. Weather conditions are ideal for disease development and we are having difficulties finding decent spray windows-too wet and too much wind. Unless you have disease resistant varieties, the foliage must be protected now with fungicides.
We applied our dormant oil in the apples and pears last week. This helps with mites, scale insects, aphids and pear psylla. It is not too late to do this but it has to be timed to a frost free, dry and calm period (not this week).
We will look at pruning the plums and cherries in the next week or so (when we have a nice dry period). This helps to avoid the spreading of diseases and allows for assessment of the flower density. Peach pruning will follow at the pink flower stage and it appears that we have plenty of viable flowers. We certainly were concerned because of the severe winter.
Strawberries are now uncovered and look okay. Raspberries are all caned out and brush is cleaned up. Lisa and Ward have been fixing their trellis wires in their summer raspberries. Next will be fertilizing in all the raspberries with nitrogen only. Blueberry fertilizer (21-0-0) will go on during the next several weeks.