There are a lot of species out there being sold as hedges. That is all well and good, but the truth is, a good deal of woody plants, including trees, can work nicely in this respect even if they haven’t … Read more
alder coppice photo by Cat James
These will be new words for many of you. These are age old methods for being able to continuously harvest a woody plant. In most cases this really means a proper tree. Some species … Read more
Biochar is being touted as the latest silver bullet in both the agricultural realm and that of environmental stability. There is some evidence that the substance can improve productivity in poor soils, and as another (of many) temporary sequesterers of … Read more
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“Man is the most extravagant accelerator of waste the world has ever endured. His withering blight has fallen upon every living thing within his reach, himself not excepted; and his besom of destruction in the uncontrolled hands of a generation
To the question of whether or not GMO apples can transfer genetics to other apple specimens, the answer is, you bet. Any alteration in the dna of an organism is transferable through sexual reproduction. It should be kept in mind … Read more
An update, for those interested in such things. That homey little biotech company (supporters of the new technology were loving this referral of the
tiny less than a dozen concern)…has…who’da thunk…been aquired. Yes, a week after the release of ARCTIC … Read more
The following was authored by Louis Lego of Elderberry Pond, with assistance from Brian Caldwell of Cornell University.
Apple Scab is perhaps the most devastating of all disease or insect disorders impacting apple production in the Northeast. While there … Read more
The following is good reading when considering dwarf rootstocks in the colder climates. This is one of the many studies done through the US SARE system. (Look for more SARE project posts on our website.)
Authored by John O’Meara of … Read more
Young grafts should be treated closer to vegetable starts than to trees. A nursery bed for that first year, at least, is required. Although the tree will require different environmental and nutritional needs than an annual, they do need the … Read more
Do you see many orchards around here choosing to irrigate?
Irrigation of course, can mean a lot of things. What is being asked here I think is whether or not a constructed system is put in place to deliver the … Read more
Phosphorus, a much needed macronutrient in plant health, is yet another resource mismanaged in modern agriculture. Traditionally, farm and even municipal wastes were returned to the growing lands to be recycled into the ecological chain. Present in respectable amounts in … Read more
And so, the genetically modified food developers have gotten around to introducing apples now. If you have any reservations about gm food, listen up. If you are one of the supporters of gm crops because it will aid in producing … Read more
This is a continually updated list (photos where possible) of the insect, spider and other wee species at Walden Heights. We hope this will intrigue you and get you to take your own census to help understand the health of … Read more
Freezing rain can wreak havoc on trees and plants, but more often than not they come through undamaged. Indeed there are few more beautiful sights than to take a walk through the aftermath.
More in the growing list of plants to keep in the landscape. Along with acting as nectaries for beneficial insects, native and other wild plants are crucial to the ecosystem due … Read more
This is a very brief time lapse. The apple branched was forced into bloom in a jar of water, indoors in order to shoot the sequence.
We were lucky enough to have a nest of bald faced hornets select the outside wall of our apple house as their site. We were also lucky enough to have zero stings. It … Read more
The Pileated Woodpecker (Dryocopus pileatus)
At least one couple takes up residence here each year, likely due to their great fondness for grapes. We are happy to have them, despite their appetite, since … Read more
We stumbled upon this happy little clutch of chick this past summer, happily lounging right on the orchard path. Keeping from overly manicuring your farm allows all kinds of furry and feathered folks to feel secure. Mother was nearby, trying … Read more
Characteristic damage of fruit from wasp species. This was created from yellow jacket wasps, but similar damage is caused by bald faced hornet and various other wasps and true hornets. Additionally, beetles (ie japanese beetle) and chafers can cause excavated … Read more
We shot a few minutes of footage of ants attacking (and eventually killing) a caterpillar many times their size. Ants are problematic in the orchard in many instances, from farming aphids to biting humans. They do occasionally shine, however, as … Read more
It should be understood that plant roots and aerial portions of those same plants vary in their resistance to cold damage. Apple tree roots for instance, can be more than 60 degrees (F) more susceptible to damage or death from … Read more
I wanted to bring attention to a study we are doing at Walden Heights. In both research and direct observation, there is evidence that crowding of root systems leads to some dwarfing effects. Apples in particular tend to avoid growing … Read more