Goshen News, Goshen, IN

Local News

May 8, 2013

Orchards mixed on 2012’s effect on current crops

GOSHEN — Apple and peach blossoms are just beginning to show their white and pink colors in local orchards, unlike last year when the blossoms came out seven weeks early because of unseasonably warm weather.

“We’re happier this spring than we were last spring,” said Maureen Kercher, co-owner of Kercher’s Sunrise Orchards, 19498 C.R. 38, Goshen.

It’s not all good news however.

“The apples are in bloom but we’ll see a so-so crop this year and we’re not exactly sure why,” Kercher said. “According to the text book, it should be a bumper crop. We’re not sure how much was harmed by the heat and drought last year.”

Kercher explained that each apple bud should have five blooms on it.

“Some have just one bloom,” she said. “It’s kind of spotty. Some fruit have lots of blossoms and some are real spotty. We’re not looking for a bumper crop. Certain varieties seem to be affected, like the red delicious and gold delicious, when others weren’t affected. Probably something happened last year. My husband Tom is puzzled by it and he’s talked to professionals about it.”

Some of the damage could be attributed to the early warm weather in 2012 when it was hot at night as well as during the day.

Kercher said there will be enough apples for Goshen residents this fall and there will be “u-pick” fruit available during the harvest season.

The orchards also grow peaches, which seem to have fared better because it’s a hardier fruit than the apples, Kercher added.

“The peaches look good and we’ll have a good crop of peaches,” Kercher said. “We just have to get through this month yet. We’re always concerned, but this seems more normal this year.”

Looking better

The owner of Stoney Creek Winery in Millersburg doesn’t have concerns about the weather affecting his grape crops.

“We do not raise our own grapes at this time,” said Gary Plank, owner of Stoney Cree Winery. “We purchase all of the fruit and juice that we make into wine.”  

It’s a different story for David Muir, owner of Judson Fruit Farm, 55535 Ind. 15, Bristol.

His orchard of primarily apples, peaches and a few cherries are doing fine.

“Things are going very well,” said Muir. “The weather this year has been far more kind than it was last year. So far we’ve experienced no losses.

That’s a far cry from 2012 when Muir saw 70 percent losses in apples and total losses in peaches and cherries.

“We didn’t make any money last year,” said Muir.

Muir also said he doesn’t believe his orchard is feeling any of the effects from last summer’s hot and dry conditions.

“I would say that right now it looks like its got the potential (to be a bumper crop year),” said Muir.

Pollination is the next question for Muir who said the neighbor whose bees he uses has had some bad luck this year.

While things are going well thus far. Muir remains cautious.

“I would always remind people we’re a long way from having the fruit in the crate.”

Corn a different story

Things aren’t going as well for those farmers who have corn.

According to The Associated Press, the USDA recently estimated that U.S. farmers would plant 97 million acres of corn this year, which would be 100,000 more acres than last year, and that this year’s crop could produce a record harvest if yields are close to the trend line or above. But that’s if farmers can just get the crop planted:

In Indiana, only 8 percent of the crop had been planted as of Sunday.

Given that early May typically is ideal for planting corn, farmers in water-logged areas may have to wait a week or more for their fields to dry enough to be planted.

If the planting gets delayed into June, growers could turn to the shorter-season corn varieties, switch some of the acreage to soybeans or declare the land unplantable and collect the crop insurance for that lost opportunity, said Christopher Hurt, a Purdue University agricultural economist in an interview with the AP.

1
Text Only
Local News
  • GN140421 easter egg hunt 05 Local churches worship, have fun on Easter holiday GOSHEN Encouraged by bright blue skies and near-perfect temperatures in the low 70’s, families and churches from all across Goshen took to their yards Sunday afternoon to participate in a time-honored tradition: the Easter egg hunt. Included among th

    April 20, 2014 5 Photos

  • GN140420 ysk kalil 01.jpg You Should Know: Anthony Kalil GOSHEN -- Goshen native Anthony Kalil has been awarded a Richard Trucker Career Grant, which includes a $10,000 cash prize. He currently lives in New York. The grant is awarded to three of America's top young opera singers who are selected after a by

    April 20, 2014 2 Photos

  • GN140420 The 39 Steps Taking 'Steps' in Bristol BRISTOL -- The Elkhart Civic Theatre crew is set to present the classic Alfred Hitchcock mystery "The 39 Steps" at The Bristol Opera House. Performances of "The 39 Steps" are planned for two weekends -- this coming Friday and Saturday and May 2 and 3

    April 20, 2014 1 Photo

  • GN140420 Kokomo Tornado 03 Recent decisions by FEMA have frustrated state and local leaders KOKOMO, Ind. -- Pamela Jackson thought she was lucky to escape harm as a tornado bore down on her neighborhood last November. She huddled in a bathroom with her two disabled sons, critically ill husband and six other family members as the twister ble

    April 20, 2014 2 Photos

  • GN140418 ghs high mileage team 12.jpg Goshen High School Super Mileage team to compete in national competition for third straight year GOSHEN -- The Goshen High School Super Mileage team is heading to Houston this week to compete in the Shell Eco Marathon for the third consecutive year. The team, led by engineering technology teacher J.J. Johnson, is taking two cars to the competiti

    April 20, 2014 5 Photos

  • BIZ GN0420 tech talk image Mistakes businesses make with their home page Mistakes businesses make with their home page

    April 20, 2014 1 Photo

  • GN140420 boston marathon 04.jpg Undeterred by last year's bombing, several locals return for Monday's Boston Marathon GOSHEN "Boston Strong" is the moniker that emerged from Boston a year ago, describing the way people dealt with the tragic events that marred the 117th annual running of the Boston Marathon. Three spectators were killed and 264 more people injured w

    April 19, 2014 5 Photos

  • GN140419 good friday 04 Local Christians reflect in advance of Easter Sunday GOSHEN - Members of the community gathered at First Presbyterian Church of Goshen to observe Good Friday with a Stations of the Cross tour.

    April 19, 2014 2 Photos

  • Briefly Elkhart Store opens at mall Creative Life Memories is now open at Concord Mall. The store is owned by Jose Elizalde, a native of Chicago, Goshen College graduate and resident of Elkhart County. CLM specializes in engraving and personalizing small gif

    April 19, 2014

  • GN140419 cyclists return 05 Trio of GC alums return from Pan-American trek GOSHEN — The dream for a pan-American cycling adventure was born for Levi Smucker, Abe Stucky, and Michael Miller on the couches in a dormitory room at Goshen College in late 2010,

    April 18, 2014 5 Photos

Parade
Magazine

Click HERE to read all your Parade favorites including Hollywood Wire, Celebrity interviews and photo galleries, Food recipes and cooking tips, Games and lots more.
Poll

There has been discussion at West Goshen Elementary School to require mandatory student uniforms in the future. How do you feel about the prospect of mandatory student uniforms in a public school environment?

I think it’s an excellent idea that is way overdue
I think it’s a bad idea and would be restrictive for students and parents.
     View Results
AP Video
Raw: More Than 100,000 Gather for Easter Sunday Raw: Greeks Celebrate Easter With "Rocket War" Police Question Captain, Crew on Ferry Disaster Raw: Orthodox Christians Observe Easter Rite Ceremony Marks 19th Anniversary of OKC Bombing Raw: Four French Journalists Freed From Syria Raw: Massive 7.2 Earthquake Rocks Mexico Captain of Sunken SKorean Ferry Arrested Raw: Fire Destroys 3 N.J. Beachfront Homes Raw: Pope Presides Over Good Friday Mass Raw: Space X Launches to Space Station Superheroes Descend on Capitol Mall Man Charged in Kansas City Highway Shootings Obama Awards Navy Football Trophy Anti-semitic Leaflets Posted in Eastern Ukraine Raw: Magnitude-7.2 Earthquake Shakes Mexico City Ceremony at MIT Remembers One of Boston's Finest Raw: Students Hurt in Colo. School Bus Crash Deadly Avalanche Sweeps Slopes of Mount Everest