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Local orchards welcome growers onsite for autumn Future Orchards walks 

Industry Best Practice

Local orchardists are looking forward to hosting in-orchard walks this autumn as APAL’s Future Orchards®  walks return to face to face delivery across Australia. 

APAL Technical Manager Rose Daniel said the walks marked a welcome return to inorchard delivery. 

We are extremely pleased to have nine local orchards available to host the Autumn walks. They provide a great opportunity for our industry to reconnect and discuss some really exciting new directions for automation, varieties and orchard design,” said Rose. 

Andrew and Gavin Corbett of Old Oak Orchards will kick of the autumn series on Friday 5 March in southern VictoriaNic Finger of Fruit Help will join the Corbetts for the orchard walk as they discuss new planting systemsvarieties and their efforts to produce high quality fruit for some of Melbourne’s leading greengrocers. 

Orange apple and pear producers are invited to Joe Caltabiano’s Apple Country Orchard for an orchard walk with FLA Jessica Fearnley that will focus on the current season harvest challenges including labour – and what this might mean for future orchard operations in the local region. 

With many Batlow growers still finding their feet after the devastating 2020 fires, Kevin Dodds will lead walks at two sitesAt Mount View Orchards Kevin will be joined by owner John Robson and at Montague Orchards by orchard manager Rod Taylor as they discuss modern, high-density planting trellis systems including some of the innovative new technology that has emerged as orchards are rebuilt. 

In the Goulburn Valley Matt Lenne of Calimna Orchards with Mick Crisera and Nic Finger will lead an in-orchard discussion looking at the performance of local pear and apple varieties and local experiences using leaf defoliators and hedging this season.

With the increased use of harvest-tech including picking platforms this season, one of the industry’s early adopters Jason Shields will showcase some of the latest harvest platform tech and share insights on what to consider when choosing a platform. 

Manjimup growers are invited to the DPIRD apple breeding site for an  update by Dr Dario Stefanelli, Senior Research Scientist, Department of Primary Industries and Regional Development in Manjimup, on the future of apple research and development in WA, and discuss outcomes from his research on the PIPS 2 Biennial bearing project.

Steele Jacob from the DPIRD Apple Breeding Program will discuss the new early varieties in the DPIRD Manjimup Apple breeding stage 2 block including tastings of some of DPIRD’s new early varieties. 

South Australian apple growers are invited to join host Nicol Orchards, APGASA’s Susie Green and FLA Paul James for an in-orchard discussion of different managed club varieties grown using a range of planting systems.  

Stanthorpe growers are invited to visit Nicoletti Orchards, where host Daniel Nicoletti, and Stephen Tancred will lead a discussion of the outcomes from the 2020-21 field trials of different varieties along with presentations looking at irrigation decision support tools. 

Tasmanian apple producers are invited to R&R Smith’s Grove Orchard to hear and see picking platforms in action and discuss the impact the platforms will have on orchard and workforce management this season.   

Each event will begin with a streamed presentation and live Q&A session with Ross Wilson and Craig Hornblow from AgFirst exploring what a more resilient and reliable labour supply may look like in the future, how will our orchard design and operations need to change, and how will this flow through to immediate and longer-term business investments and profitability. 

Local FLAs and growers will also provide updates on trials and activities.

To register and see the detailed program, locations and times for your region visit the following links:

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