Although apple harvest is still a few months away, it takes all year to prepare for it. The spring is our busiest time (even busier than the fall!) which is why you haven’t heard much from us these days. Here at Nature’s Bounty, our team has been working long days to ensure that the orchard is looking its best when you all come to visit this fall.
So, what exactly has been going on at the farm?
In April, some of our older trees were pulled out and replaced with new trees elsewhere on the farm. After two to three years of proper maintenance and care, these trees will begin producing a crop and eventually become more productive than the large trees that were removed.
Sturdy posts and wire have been installed along each new row and form the main structure of the trellis which will support the immense weight of the apple crop to come.
Each new tree is secured, by hand, to a bamboo stake on the trellis to help it grow straight and tall. Metal tree guards are added at the base to deter critters from nibbling on the tender bark.
It has been a very dry spring, so our team has spent time individually watering every single new tree (we have about 2,000!). Each tree gets about 5 litres of water on an as-needed basis, to help the new trees establish a strong root system before the winter. For this, we use a 1,000L tank towed behind a tractor. We call it the “watering can.”
Last week, June Drop occurred. This is a process in which the tree naturally drops some of its immature crop to make room for the larger apples you pick in the fall. Where there are still too many apples for the tree to support, our team will thin out the crop by hand.
In addition to apple tree care, we have also been putting in the work to plant a four acre field of pumpkins and sunflowers for everyone to enjoy in the fall season.
To top it off, all the hay has been harvested for our sheep and Lily the llama to munch on all year round.
Be sure to follow us on Instagram and Facebook to stay tuned for updates and some exciting news coming soon!