Premier's Award for Agri-Food Innovation Excellence

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2011 Regional Award Winner


The Blueberry Patch - Picton

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Photo of Jeff Leal, MPP Peterborough, Marion and Jim Hughes

Jeff Leal, MPP Peterborough, Marion and Jim Hughes

This innovation brings a Western European apple growing technique to eastern Ontario. The 'super spindle' way of growing apples has trees planted closer together and maintained to be narrower but taller to gain higher yields. The yield from these orchards regularly reaches 1,000 bushels an acre (compared to 600-700 in traditional orchards),and the apples from this system are consistently larger and bring higher prices than from other systems in the area. Roses are planted at the end of each row to act as a decorative early warning system for any diseases and insects that may spread to the trees Rose plants are usually affected first and this alerts the grower to monitor his apple orchard more closely. Although the trees do cost more to maintain, the greater productivity more than compensates.

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