Tag Archives: Apple Pruning

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    Week 12’17, Orchard Cider Year

    March 22, OUTDOORS: Live and learn? Live and feel less learned! This past crazy warm Wednesday, there’s Jacques leaving a scalloping trail as he prunes an Esopus Spitzenberg block. These trees lost virtually all their fruit buds in last year’s freeze. Note: one extra reason growers complain about losing an apple crop is the tendency […]

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    Week 11 ’17, Orchard Cider Year

    March 13, OUTDOORS: On a grey day, here’s a break from what’s happening here to look at what’s the same. Two years ago we tacked this notice up outside our retail stand. Somehow we thought the nastiness was peaking back THEN.   Tssssssss.         March 14, INDOORS:  The oddest possible stove-wood belongs to […]

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    Week 8 ’17, Orchard Cider Year

    February 22, OUTDOORS:  Last week’s fluffy snow has collapsed but still covers the ground. Fitz is back to pruning! His back went out, but now it’s in! There’s a pruning video HERE for anyone who’d like to see him in action. Throughout #orchardcideryear ’16 he shows up in dozens of posts – not to mention […]

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    Week 7 ’17, Orchard Cider Year

    February 15, INDOORS: Jeff, Wanda, Ben & Ryan, prepared to bottle Semi-Dry: machines lined up, first sparged bottles inverted into the turntable, counterpressure filler rinsed out with cider, corks & wire hoods loaded in the corker, music turned up, and – ten little seconds sacrificed for a blog photo. Because faces don’t show once the […]

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    Week 6 ’17, Orchard Cider Year

    February 7, ’17 OUTDOORS: So here comes a reality-check on the nice neatnik look in the lower pic.  Our first ack-it-broke-down-we-need-it-working-NOW responder is Jacques. Hence, when he observes that scattered cuttings beat up our machines much less than  tidy ones, and the whole job will go more smoothly this Spring if we let the nice […]

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    Week 5 ’17, Orchard Cider Year

    February 2, OUTDOORS:  Fallen cuttings behind Jacques, row after row, day after day. He looks small but the wood falls! These gray photos misrepresent today’s nice pearly light. Fitz is on hiatus, will be back in three weeks. (Fitz immediately centers up his cuttings for the chopper, leaving tidy lines.  See Week 18,  #orchardcideryear  ’16. […]

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    Week 4 ’17 Orchard Cider Year

    January 23 OUTDOORS: Down in the summer pick-your-own field, the invisible star of Jeff’s 2017 raspberry pruning is: a new hip!  Which works way better than the worn-out one. Otherwise not much is different except he got into the raspberries a month earlier than last year, and also clouds not sunshine set the palette of […]

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    Week 3 ’17 Orchard Cider Year

    Martin Luther King Day ’17, OUTDOORS:  No Week 1 or 2 OCY posts in 2017 because we took a staycation and a vacation.  But Jacques went out pruning that whole time, weather permitting.  Last year, he, Harry & Otis started with pole saws in big trees (small photo.) This January Jacques alone started in  dwarf […]

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    Week 50, Orchard Cider Year

    December 18, INDOORS:  After a long season of hard work everyone slows down as the holidays come on.  But pruning will start in January and Jacques is taking the tools apart to sharpen all the blades. Both trees and humans do better with smooth, clean cuts.         December 21, OUTDOORS: Late afternoon […]

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    Week 36, Orchard Cider Year

    September 8, OUTDOORS: Well this year the harvest hasn’t cranked up yet because apples are ripening a bit late — but the crew is here to work!  John & Brown are cutting root suckers, which spring up around the bases of some trees when their rootstocks put out wood and foliage. Why? Because the above-ground […]

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    Week 23, Orchard Cider Year

    June 8th, OUTDOORS: A productive orchard grows from thousands of early decisions. Fitz and Luke just moved through this 2013 cider planting, clipping back soft new shoots that sprouted from the central stem (“leader”) of each tree.  Some, to keep them from competing with the leader, which we want to grow as tall as possible […]

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    Week 18, Orchard Cider Year

    May 3, OUTDOORS: In past photos you may have seen neat rows of cut branches centered in aisle after aisle of pruned trees – that’s Fitz’s way.  Another way: move through the pruning, then come back later and line up your brush with hooks and pitchforks – like Otis and Luke on a wet Tuesday. […]

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    Week 14, Orchard Cider Year

    April 6-7 OUTDOORS: Well, we’ve had such monstrously cold nights – 18F, 6F, 8F respectively – that there has been bud-kill already, perhaps huge bud-kill. (See the brownish spots and unevenly darkened tissue in that second crosscut bud? Cells have been ruptured by internal freezing.) Last week we had normal old worries that blossom parts […]

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    Week 12, Orchard Cider Year

    March 22 OUTDOORS: This is part of our Black Hill cider orchard, planted mostly in the ’90’s. Today Corrie went up in the Brownie lift to snap a small pruner in a big field: another angle on why pruning takes so long. Jacques is faintly circled – can you find Newton? So far things look […]

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    Week 10, Orchard Cider Year

    March 8 INDOORS: Assorted equipment: our vintage counter-pressure filler and a newer, temporary item, maybe counter-pressure in another way. The filler will move in a couple of hours when we set up to bottle. The bag will move right out when harvest starts and every inch counts. Nobody’s here right now, because Steve borrowed a […]

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    Week 9, Orchard Cider Year

    March 1 OUTDOORS: No new snow. Fitz & Jacques are nearly through pruning our old trial orchard, planted in 1961 but now sporting scores of obscure varieties grafted on during the ’80’s. The tryout years are long past, so this orchard now opens for pick-your-own each fall. Those blue signs guide the public: numbers key […]

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    Week 7: Orchard Cider Year

      February 17 OUTDOORS:  Pruning on and on under a dull sky. Big trees, busy pole saw. But today, a quick tribute to the small Wheeler Saw (highlighted) hanging from Otis’ belt. Designed specifically for pruning, patented in 1956 (you can see the application on line), excellent as ever.             […]

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    Week 6: Orchard Cider Year

    February 10  INDOORS: Look! Nicole LeGrand Leibon, aka Her Sensory Amazingness, home from the West Coast after teaching sensory analysis to hordes of attendees after #CiderCon!  It’s hard hard work helping people’s minds to separate, isolate and name the many (& changing) strands of aroma, flavor and texture  woven into a sensory “experience.” (Also exhausting […]

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    Week 4: Orchard Cider Year

    January 27 INDOORS:  Nicole, Steve and Ryan are pulling words from complex waves of aroma, tasting a biggish 2014-crop blend batch (>1100 gallons). What additional dash of a varietal batch might make the blend even better?  Nicole usually writes the notes … We’ve needed miles of handwriting every year to bring out the most delicious […]

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    Week 3: Orchard Cider Year

      Jan. 20 INDOORS: Ah, feeling good! This week our giant heaps of accumulated knowledge are being poured back into Filemaker… We’re reunited and it feels so good, after breaking up in 2008 and looking for that total recall in all the wrong places till now…           Jan. 20 OUTDOORS: What, […]

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    Week 1: Orchard Cider Year

    Here begins Orchard Cider Year, from Poverty Lane Orchards/Farnum Hill Ciders: 2 snapshots every week, one outdoors, one indoors, through the year. Follow via Twitter or Instagram at #orchardcideryear, or right here on the old- fashioned website. Jan 6 INDOORS: Steve Wood using his power-tool-a-phone to blend varietal juices at Box Mill press, where a wholesale apple customer’s […]

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    Winter Pruning at Poverty Lane Orchards

    Welcome to the fields in winter! Thanks to Sawyer Broadley, a talented, helpful and patient video guy. PRUNING at POVERTY LANE ORCHARDS

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    Pruning Pruning Pruning

    New Year’s into April we do ‘dormant pruning.’ We’re not altogether dormant but the trees are. So most of us working here spend hundreds of hours — pruning. (This photo omits 5 or 6 other people who also prune here through any given winter.) Pruning matters because fruit trees are not appliances. They don’t set […]