A beginner’s guide to successful cherry farming
Are you interested in cherry farming? Growing this delicious fruit is not without its challenges, however, it can also make a rewarding investment. If you’re just starting out, it can be helpful to use a section of land to plant cherries in addition to your regular crops. Looking for affordable equipment? Find robust machines for sale on AgriMag and get your cherry farm off to a good start.
Risks of cherry farming
Cherries are a complicated crop to grow so you’ll need the right knowledge and skills to succeed. Another challenge you need to be aware of is that cherry farming is labour-intensive. Every cherry needs to be removed from the tree by hand, which means you’ll need to hire plenty of workers to get the job done. This increases the input expenses of cherry farming. Irregular yields are another issue farmers have to deal with. This fruit’s sensitivity to soil and climate conditions also complicates the growing process. This type of farming requires a substantial investment and it takes three years for the trees to bear fruit with an extra three years before full production commences.
Advantages of cherry farming
An advantage of cherry farming is that there is demand for this fruit on both the local and international markets. Despite the complexities of growing cherries, you’re likely to make a good profit if you’re successful. You can sell your produce at local markets, retail outlets and by exporting them.
Choosing a cultivar
On the international market, both sweet and sour cherries are available. However, only sweet cherries are grown locally. Before you start cherry farming, you’ll need to make sure that you pick the right cultivator. Consider the yield of each cultivator, as well as the fruit size, before you make a decision. Choosing a cultivator that produces deep-red cherries can be advantageous. Other factors that need to be taken into account are the chilling requirements, input expenses, and drought tolerance of the cultivator. It’s advisable to think about the cultivator’s resistance to diseases and the size of the tree and storage ability of the fruit. Your choice of cultivators includes the following:
● Royal Dawn
● Giant Hedelfinger
Planting cherry trees
Cherry trees are at risk for root rot so it’s essential that the soil is well-drained. The soil should be prepared properly to ensure that you enjoy maximum yields. Take soil samples to determine which fertiliser you need to apply and in what quantities. A leaf analysis will also help guide the development of a suitable fertiliser program. Avoid positioning the trees on low-lying land as they’re negatively impacted by frost. Another factor to consider when you’re planting cherry trees is whether there is sufficient shelter from the wind. They should be planted along trellises with 4.5 metres between each tree in the row.
You’ll need to pay extra attention to your cherries in the period prior to harvesting. It’s advisable to check the size and colour of the fruit daily during this time. The taste of the cherries is the best indication of whether they’re ready to be harvested or not. It’s possible to harvest the cherries from one tree up to six times in one season.
Pests and disease
You’ll need to protect your cherries from the following:
● Bacterial canker
● Root phytophthora
● Apple maggots
● Brown rot
● Powdery mildew
● Plum Curculio
● Peach bore
The type of disease or pest affecting your trees will determine what protection you use. Biological methods or pesticides can be applied as necessary. Nets help to protect your cherries from birds and frost. Copper oxychloride can be applied to dormant trees to protect them against bacterial canker.
Now that you know more about cherry farming, you can start growing this delicious fruit. If you decide to plant cherry trees on your farm, you’ll need the right tools to get the job done without any hassles. Find equipment for sale on AgriMag and enjoy great savings.