Good Fruit Grower

April 1

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Page 30 of 55 GOOD FRUIT GROWER APRIL 1, 2015 31 tour, showed off her new planting of pears (featured in Good Fruit Grower last September). The trees are bi-axis, with the two scaffolds aligned in the row and forming a tree wall rather than a "V" extending into the alleys. Jenereaux is the fifth generation on Spurr Brothers farms, which is a diversified 800-acre enterprise that involves her father Bill, uncle Gordon, brother Will, and cousin Katie. The farm has potatoes, carrots, berries, onions, and grains. Jenereaux is the orchard manager. While her ancestor William Spurr was among the first growers of McIntosh 150 years ago, Jenereaux grows Honeycrisp, Jonagold, Ambrosia, Gala, Sonya, SweeTango. Some older varieties persist, including Northern Spys. Sarsfield Farms Northern Spys have held on in Nova Scotia thanks to the Sarsfield family. Leonard Sarsfield started a pie com- pany in the 1970s, building a reputation for great apple pie based on the Northern Spy apple. It did so well, the family quit growing apples. Leonard sold that company in 1991, but ten years later started another, called Apple Valley. After selling the company, Blake Sarsfield, a cousin, wanted to return to the growing side. The farm he and his wife, Paulette, have now has more than 200 acres of apples, peaches, cherries, and strawberries. It is the larg- est producer of Honeycrisp apples in Nova Scotia, having started with the variety in 1996. They use a variety of spacings and rootstocks, M.9, M.26, M.7, M.4, and Supporter 4. New plantings are made in rows 12 feet apart on M.9 roots. And, true to its roots, the farm also grows Northern Spys. Van Meekeren Farms In addition to packing apples for themselves and their neighbors and selling them under the brand name Wink, the Van Meekerens import fruit from the Southern Hemisphere in the off season and pack and sell it as well. The packing business has three members, in addition to brothers Steve and Mike, who are key employees. They also grow 100 acres of apples. This next year they will be planting Honeycrisp and Gala to replace older varieties—and also to renew the farm after the devastat- ing fire blight infection last year forced them to remove all their pear orchards. Canard Orchards Gerry and Shonna VanOostrum's farm has been visited by IFTA several times in the past, and the orchards reflect the history of a progressive operation that evolved from free-standing, semi-dwarf trees to medium-density trees on single stakes to high-density trellised systems. VanOostrum now plants everything on M.9 and B.9. The main varieties in the 90 acres include Gala, Honeycrisp, Ambrosia, Jonagold, SweeTango, McIntosh, and red strains of Cortland. He also grows many of his own replacement trees and suffered some serious losses in the fire blight epidemic last summer. The farm is named after their local town. CAP Farms Andy and Gail Parker own CAP Farms, which has about 100 acres of McIntosh and Honeycrisp, and many of the Honeycrisp are on old Empire and Northern Spy trees that were top-worked. The old spacing was 20-by-6 feet. Recently, they have started a renewal program with an eye to mechanization in a tree-wall system on 11-foot rows with trees spaced two to four feet apart. Many of the new plantings will be budded in place with Pazazz, Honeycrisp, and other high-value varieties on M.26 rootstock. Like many Nova Scotia growers, they were hurt last year by fire blight. They are now concerned whether they can prune and spray their way back or will need to replant. •

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