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HORRIBLE Year for Fruit Growers?

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Rodnboro

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Yes, here in Georgia the temps have been in the 80's most of last month and then down to 24 this week. It got my few Catawba vines.
 

Scooter68

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Yeah we had the warm spell, long enough for our Japanese Plums to bloom fully then freeze about 2 days after they reached full bloom. If we get anything I will be shocked. Going to look for some European Plums, they bloom later and ripen later (August - September) Tired of this after 10 years plum trees are beautiful but never produce more than a handful because of this early bloom thing.
 

cgallamo

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Last year was the best year I can remember in North GA. Even temps and pretty dry at bloom, then drought from mid august into the fall. Can't win em all!
 

Scooter68

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Last year was the best year I can remember in North GA. Even temps and pretty dry at bloom, then drought from mid august into the fall. Can't win em all!
Ah yes, farming, even on small scale in our backyards is risky business. You can do some things to protect plants and trees but there are limits.
 

cgallamo

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Scooter how are your blueberries? I think mine are fine. Plums and peaches are toast. Sour cherries haven't bloomed yet so could be ok??
 

NorCal

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We just had bud break on the vines here in Nor Cal. 70 degree days and some rain forecasted the next few weeks should really get these vines started for the season.
 

Scooter68

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My Blueberries are fixing to get ready to bloom. I'm hoping they will hold off another couple of weeks at least but..... Too large an area to protect with anything like plastic so I just have to wait and see. Only lost our blueberry crop to weather once in the last 8-10 years. I have 5 plants that are about 10 years old. If everything makes it through the weather we should have 33 plants of which about 15 are of age to produce something measurable.

(Just in case anyone is thinking about planting blueberries - Great idea. They are easy to care for once the soil is right (ph 4.5-5.5 is best) Don't every waste your money on the small plants at least get plants in 1-2 gallon containers. It's worth it! - 8 of those 15 plants were planted within the last 3 years from large 2 gallon containers)
 

Scooter68

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Estimated blueberry loss in Georgia is 80%. $200 million.
That's some serious loss to some farmers.

I once figured out that a couple of acres of blueberries, at then farmers market prices of $20.00 /gallon could earn $20,000.00 a year. (That was about 7-8 years ago) Again that's pretty good money from a small piece of land. Biggest work is the picking.
 

Bodenski

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I was hoping to make a peach wine this year with some farmer's market peaches, but I think that plan is shot now. I don't think I will be able to afford it! I hope next year goes better. (More for those who's livelihood depend on it than for my wine!)
 

Scooter68

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Bodenski _ Still depends on where you live and where the local stands get their peaches. AND no matter where they get them, eventually they will have over-ripe peaches to dispose of.... That might even be more true IF the prices are so high people don't want to buy them. Now regular supermarkets... most time their fruit is so green that I don't think I'll get that desperate again.

Still going to be tough for farmers and produce sellers if the crops are that badly hit. AND for our area our last AVERAGE frost is April 26 over a month away. My blue berries are breaking out in blooms like crazy now here in NW Arkansas.
 

Bodenski

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I'm in the DC area, so I'm sure most of what would come our way is going to be expensive. But you are right that if it's fruit no one wants, that would still probably ferment OK!
 

Scooter68

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You'll have to head west from DC area and hit those farmers markets over beyond Middleburg out toward Front Royal.
 

Venatorscribe

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Small pears

Yes - same here. I live in Days Bay, New Zealand. Real bad weather and not enough hot sun shine. My pears just didn't expand. So I mickey moused around with my pear cider recipe and did the unforgivable ie added water, white raisins, sugar - just like a normal fruit wine. Then fermented everything on the pulp.
 

BlueStimulator

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Buds are just now starting to show signs of swelling, I hope they hold off for a few more weeks. Good luck to everyone!!!!
 

cgallamo

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@BlueStimulator - love the combo of flyfishing and wine! My favorite two pastimes as well...

I've been meaning to post this for awhile - to show the effects of the warm then cold ending winter. You can see the bushes are right next to one another. First bush had a little more late evening sun. Some of the buds have come out on the second bush, but it has far fewer. I think my crop will be halved this year.

That is really ok for me (less picking), I'll still probably get in excess of 30lbs. Maybe just no wine this year. :(

blueberryflowers.jpg

blueberrynoflowers.jpg
 

evansmedine

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Lost almost all of my loquat blooms and all of my satsuma fruit. What the late freeze didn't get winds and heavy rain finished them off.
 

Scooter68

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Sorry to hear that. I did some vicious pruning on my blueberry bushes and the quantity of blossoms now appears lighter than normal but we'll see what happens. Fprtunately they didn't get hammered by the freezes as best I can tell. Apples also got a overdue pruning but I've yet to get enough from them for anything but some cooked apples (With the bug and bird damage. Plums - One year only have I had a quantity of to enjoy.
 

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