Whole Almond Orchard Recycling
“Our investments over the last several years in a practice called Whole Orchard recycling. This is when an orchard gets to the end of its life and the trees are taken out. They're chipped and deep-ripped into the soil and then disk over to put that entire orchard biomass, which is a huge amount of woody material down into the soil,” explained Lewis. “And we've been doing research for quite a number of years that shows that that it can improve soil quality, increase water holding capacity, and soil organic matter. It does not seem to pose a particular problem for replant disease or soil born pathogens,” she said.
Lewis said that the California Department of Food and Agriculture is offering an incentive to help growers with this whole orchard recycling practice.
“This last year paid off in terms of the California Department of food and Agriculture has decided to include whole orchard recycling in their healthy soils incentive program,” she said. “So that's all based on research that was funded by the Almond Board and offers growers a new set of incentive dollars to help defray some of the costs of that practice. So we are very excited about that.”