NW Cherry Harvest Update Pt 2

NW Cherry Harvest Update Pt 2

Bob Larson
Bob Larson
With today's Fruit Grower Report, I'm Bob Larson. It hasn't been without challenges, but cherry growers are experiencing a pretty successful harvest so far this year.

Northwest Cherry Grower's president BJ Thurlby says the first month or so looks to be on track for meeting estimates ...

THURLBY ... "Here we are today, it's been a nice run up through the middle of July. We've shipped about 18.6-million boxes through today, you know, and the estimate that we put on this year is about 22-million so we're not going to have any problem, I don't think, hitting our estimate if the weather holds."

As far as the weather goes, Thurlby says they couldn't ask for better ...

THURLBY ... "And so far, the weather has been really spectacular. I mean I can't remember in the last five or six years better growing conditions where we didn't have some areas you know that were already over 105 degrees every day. It's just kind of been the way it's been. And, so this year we've been kind floating around the mid-80's. While it's very warm, it's not too warm. It's really perfect cherry-growing conditions. So, we've been very blessed on that front."

And, Thurlby says we just continue to ship ...

THURLBY ... "I think we've got another four or five million boxes to go, but demand still remains I think strong enough to pull the fruit that we have left to pick and to sell through the market. So, I'm just feeling very bullish about the back end of our cherry business."

Sounds like, so far, Thurlby is pretty pleased ...

THURLBY ... "The first month and a half has been very well received by both the trade and consumers, so I'm actually very happy today."

Thurlby says the domestic market this year has been outstanding, especially in the eastern U.S. where the weather has been very hot this summer.


BL: Welcome back to another "Fruit Bites" brought to you by Valent U.S.A. Joining us once again is Valent's Allison Walston. And this week Allison, tell me about earwigs ...

AW: Well just mentioning earwigs, most of you had a little shiver. European earwigs were first found in Seattle in 1907. If you're a master gardener earwigs are an enemy. If you're a fruit grower, earwigs might be a friend.

BL: A friend? But earwigs are found in apples when clustered together. Aren't they feeding on the apples?

AW: but earwigs could also be feeding on aphids and other orchard pests. Rick Hilton down in Medford, OR and now Dr. Robert Orpet from WSU are proving that earwigs can be an underappreciated predator.

BL: Before I totally change my mind about earwigs, I need more ...

AW: In a recently published article, Orpet found that where earwigs were present in the orchard, there were considerably less woolly apple aphid colonies. He even dissected earwig stomachs and found aphids.

BL: [insert dad joke]

BL: Well maybe they don't "bug" me as much as I thought, thanks Allison. Join us again next time for Fruit Bites, brought to you by Valent. Until then, I'm Bob Larson.


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