How the Hail and Wind Affected Our Crops

The hail storm and wind storm of August 21 was very difficult for us for several reasons. It was the third hailstorm of our season and it also had 50 to 60 mph winds along with one inch of hail. It’s certainly caused the most storm damage to our fruit crop that I have ever experienced in my career.

Kiwiberry vines

After the storm, some of the kiwiberry vines were laid over on their sides

 

Damage to some apple trees

Two rows of apples on trellises were completely destroyed in one place

 

Cleaning up after the storm

Storm clean-up projects

At the same time, even as we recover from the damage, we are making every effort to provide our customers with the best quality fruit possible after a storm like this. The west side of the apple trees was damaged much more significantly than the east side, so we are using the fruit from the west side of the trees to make our award-winning cider and leaving the good quality apples on the east side for our pick-your-own customers to harvest.

West side of apple trees with more storm damage

West side of apple trees (more storm damage)

 

East side of trees (significantly less storm damage)

East side of trees (significantly less storm damage)

Since the storm, we have been going over our apple trees and picking the west side of the trees and tops of the trees trying to remove all of the hail-damaged fruit, at least the worst of it.

As shown in the pictures, we do have good fruit still available for picking and also in our market.

We are also bringing in extra fruit from other local orchards–from growers who we have worked with before and whose growing practices we trust.

As you pick today, you will most likely see marks/cuts on some of the fruit, but the flavor will not be impacted. We thank you for your continued support of our orchard. As we journey through the years, many times we are reminded by weather scenarios of the challenge of producing quality fruit for our customers. It comes with much hard work and the blessing of God our Creator, and is rewarding always, even when the seasons and weather do not go as we plan.

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