I am very passionate about local produce. There is nothing like getting a piece of ripe fruit in season grown close by. The flavors and variety cannot be beat. That is why I closely follow the fruit crops here in Michigan. I was been concerned since late last week that we could be in for some damage to the tree crops with a frost warning in place for the early hours of Monday, May 13th, 2013. This morning I decided to share with you what local farms are saying on their facebook pages about the damage. It's been good news/bad news this morning. Some places at least stayed above 30 degrees including the biggest apple growing fruit ridge on the west side of the state (see report from MLive). However I have read reports of significant damages being done.
Middleton Berry Farm (Ortonville, MI) | Facebook page
"We ran the irrigation all night to protect the strawberries from frost damage. Picking season will probably start sometime in mid-June."
Bixby Orchards (Berrien Springs, MI) | Facebook page
"Thank you to everyone who prayed for us last night! As of this point we think everything looks ok, but it's still a little to early to tell. The temps stayed right at 32, which is much better than forecasted! We did run irrigation on strawberries all night, so a nap will be in order for Bryan today!"
On their apricot trees"...very happy to have made it thru the night with no freezing temps! So far everything looks ok here!"
Whittaker's Berry Farm (Ida, MI) | Facebook page | My visit to this farm
"Brrr! If you came to the farm this morning, this is what you'd see! With ground temps. dipping to 22 degrees we irrigated our berries all night. By irrigating at these temps. the berries become covered and insulated in a layer of ice-keeping them at a steady 32degrees, and protecting tender new buds and blossoms from any frost damage. It's a beautiful and amazing sight! We're now approximately 30 days from harvest. See you in a few short weeks!"
Sietsema Orchards & Cider Mill (Ada, MI) | Facebook page
"RIP 2013 apple crop. 27 degrees pretty much did the whole crop in last night. Good news for the apple community in Michigan is that initial report is showing Sparta "the ridge" only got down to 30.8 degrees"
Seedling Fruit (South Haven, MI) | Facebook page
"Well, it got cold...we dipped below freezing for a bit. Now we wait...will start checking buds later today....hopefully not too bad though."
Nye's Apple Barn (St. Joesph, MI) | Facebook page
"It appears that the damage from last night will be (hopefully) minimal. It is still too early to tell, we won't really know for a few weeks. We are hoping that the only damage will be to the lower branches."