Updates From The Farm

Rootstock, defined

Rootstock, defined

"What the heck is a rootstock? " It is not uncommon for us to hear this from our customers buying fruit trees. Deciding which rootstock to use is one of the complexities of planting fruit trees. In simple terms, fruit trees are produced by joining the wood of a...

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Peach Leaf Curl

Peach Leaf Curl

Peach Leaf curl is caused by the fungus Taphrina deformans. The spores of the fungus lodge in the bud scales of peach and nectarine trees in the summer, overwintering there until the tree begins to break dormancy. At that time, the new leaf tissues are infected,...

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Winter Scouting Fruit Trees

Winter Scouting Fruit Trees

Scouting, or looking for pest and disease problems on plants, is an important part of good orchard management. Winter is a good time to look at your fruit trees without their leafy clothing hiding problems. In our rainy climate, all manner of fungal and bacterial...

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Winter Garden Joy

Winter Garden Joy

We have been blessed in Whatcom County this fall and early winter with more sunshine and less rain than normal. But even in the dreariest November and Decembers, you can find hummingbirds warring over winter blooming plants. Plants that bloom in the fall and winter do...

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Harvest is upon us

Harvest is upon us

With the warm, dry summer we've had, fruit is ripening up to three weeks ahead of "normal". For the last three years, our accumulated heat units are well above the historical average. Since many fruits ripen when they've experienced the right amount of heat, it is to...

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Permaculture Plants

Permaculture Plants

“Permaculture is the conscious design and maintenance of agriculturally productive ecosystems, which have the diversity, stability and resilience of natural ecosystems” -Bill Mollison The permaculture concept has gained quite a bit of popularity in recent years. From...

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Cover Crops for Home Gardeners

Cover Crops for Home Gardeners

Thanks to Chris Benedict at WSU Whatcom Extension and his reminder to plan for cover crops in the recent edition of Whatcom Ag Monthly.  This time of year, farmers face decisions on which cover crops to plant for fall. Cover crops are frequently used to improve and...

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Fruit Fly Maggots in Berries

Fruit Fly Maggots in Berries

It's summer fruit time, with strawberries at their peak, cherries just starting to ripen, currants and gooseberries turning color and raspberries on the horizon. I've had a couple of calls lately about worms in various berries last summer and how to prevent them this...

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Mildew Explosion!

Mildew Explosion!

The past couple of weeks, people are really starting to see powdery mildew raise its ugly head. Powdery mildew is caused by fungus in the genus Podosphaera. Powdery mildew spores overwinter in the leaf buds of plants, and germinate just as the new shoots are emerging....

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Flower Thinning Fruit Trees

Flower Thinning Fruit Trees

We've posted several times about thinning out just set fruit on fruit trees. As fruit tree blossoms are pollenized and the fruit begins to grow, it gives off ethylene gas. If enough of this gas is released, either because thinning happened late or not at all, many...

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Apple and Pear Scab

Apple and Pear Scab

Early April has been both cool and rainy. With this kind of weather, we have our thoughts on fungal disease control in the orchards. One of the greatest challenges to growing apples and pears in our climate is scab, a fungal disease (Venturia inaequalis on apples,...

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Peach Leaf Curl Resistance

Peach Leaf Curl Resistance

The Center has an exciting new website that has a section entitled Growing and Variety Trials. This part of the website will over the next year begin to populate practical grower information on the numerous trials on going at the Center. Today I’ll outline some of the...

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