Updates From The Farm

Anticipating Transition at the Center

A New Executive Director At Cloud Mountain, we are used to change. Much of agriculture is about being attuned to the seasonal changes of plants, weather, and ecosystems. One might go so far as to argue that success in agriculture depends on the ability to anticipate...

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Timing Delayed Dormant Sprays

Fruit trees are interesting plants to grow. Humans have been selecting for better fruit for centuries, and in the process, some of the natural resistance to pests and diseases have been lost. A further challenge is our mild rainy climate, which is perfect for fungal...

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Renovating an Older Apple Tree

There are many century old apple orchards scattered around Puget Sound. The San Juan Islands had over 10,000 acres in tree fruits in 1900. Whatcom County had somewhere around 5000 acres that were apples, some pie cherries and plums. There were two packing plants, the...

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Winter Continues

It has been 8 years or more since we've seen a winter like the one we're having now. Here in the Pacific Northwest, long extended cold periods and snow are rare. And it doesn't look like we're going to warm up anytime soon, according to the Climate Prediction Center....

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Internship 2016 Reflections

We were just reflecting on the internship season we’ve just finished and thought we’d share one of our favorite memories: In week 28 of 35 we are in the heat of summer, interns have drafted most pieces of a business plan, been through most of the heavy technical...

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Inside the Internship: Sean McWay

By Sarah Miller Last month I spoke with intern Sean McWay, a Missouri native, about his time at Cloud Mountain Farm Center.  Sean is drawn to the joys of being outside, working with his hands, and the scientific inquiry farming can provide.  This is an unsurprising...

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The Best Time To Plant

I wanted to expand on my last post about summer planting. A more general question we get in the nursery at Cloud Mountain is "when is the best time to plant?" In our maritime climate, you can plant almost any time of year. But as I discussed in the last post, summer...

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Summer Planting

We're often asked by customers if they can plant this time of year, or should they wait for fall. The simple answer- you can plant if you can water. Having said that, it is best not to plant during a real heat wave, when daytime temperatures are in the mid-80's or...

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Inside the Incubator: Slanted Sun Farm

By Sarah Miller, Cloud Mountain Farm Center Intern Recently I had the pleasure to speak with Anna Morris of Slanted Sun Farm about her experience as an Incubator Farmer at Cloud Mountain Farm Center. The Incubator Farm Program is dedicated to maintaining and improving...

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Multi-variety fruit trees and other musings

It sounds great, doesn't it? 4 or 5 varieties of apple, all on one tree! Both pie and sweet cherries on one tree! How about plums and peaches together-an on-the-tree fruit cocktail! No worries about pollination, long fruiting season....why doesn't Cloud Mountain carry...

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Growing in Containers

We talk to many people these days that want to grow perennial and woody plants in containers. Maybe because they live in an apartment or condo, and don't have a yard, or because they find it easier to manage. But growing plants in containers is actually a little...

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Pear Trees Problems

We're hearing that many people are seeing problems on their pear trees this year. One pest that seems to be showing up is pear blister mite. This little mite overwinters in the bud scales on the trees, waking up as the trees break dormancy, then feeding on the leaves...

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