Crane Orchards celebrating “the perfect year” for peaches, apples

FENNVILLE – Agriculture is rarely a perfect science. Even when crops survive, the harvest is almost always affected by storms, inclement weather or extreme heat.

This is especially true for fruits, such as cherries, peaches and apples grown at Crane Orchards in Fennville. But this year, as autumn approaches, the farm is celebrating.

“This is the season my grandfather and dad have been looking for all of their lives,” said owner Rob Crane. “Everyone is always looking for the perfect year, if there is such a thing, and it’s as close as we’ve ever seen it. As long as the storms stay away, you’ll be fine. as the season goes on. we get, the less likely these storms are. “

Crane Orchards managed to avoid the worst of the severe thunderstorms that swept through western Michigan in mid-August. The farm is currently in the middle of the fishing season.

Peaches grow at Crane Orchards in Fennville.  The crop is currently $ 1.50 a pound.

“This weekend will be important, and we’ll probably spend the next weekend,” Crane said. “The quality is good, we have good supplies. We have been blessed.”

Soon, the farm will refocus its attention on apple season.

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“We are very optimistic about apples,” Crane said. “We are sitting on this hill where the state itself is quite small in number, but we have a full harvest here. It has been a trying spring for us.”

Crane refers to unusually cold weather in April and May, which can seriously damage an apple crop. For two weeks, the farm monitored the freezing of its fans.

“It paid off,” Crane said. “We needed 2-3 degrees and got what we needed every time. A lot of the guys in the ridge, which is the fruit belt for apples, didn’t do as well because their temperatures were a bit cooler and the fans weren’t pretty. “

A toddler eats fruit at Crane Orchards in Fennville.  The farm is in the middle of the peach season, with the apple season kicking off Labor Day weekend.

Crane expects to have all varieties this year. Apple picking season kicks off Labor Day weekend with Gala, McIntosh and Golden Supreme. One variety, Ginger Gold, is being picked – and Crane is hoping for an early Honeycrisp.

“We check every other day, so we haven’t announced a date for that yet,” he said. “But we’re not going to miss this year. We’re in very good shape.”

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