Saturday, January 24, 2009

Orchard Scouting

In winter i find whatever job is available. I put out applications and usually end up in some retail store spending half my pay on clothes I dont need. Come summer however, I'm an Orchard Scout. It's by far the best job i have ever had. What is an Orchard Scout you may ask. Well, it's simple really. I drive around looking at orchards for insects and plant diseases. My boss and I begin early each day making the rounds to our 20 clients.

All of our farmers grow cherries, apples, pears, peaches, wine grapes, nectarines, strawberries, blackberries, plumbs, apricots, and a few other things. The primary crops are apples and cherries though. Michigan is known for its apple and cherry industy and is quickly becoming a great place for wine as well.

Every week we do the same rotation hitting the same farms around the same times each day of the week. My boss does his blocks and i hit mine, jumping in and out of the car to inspect small samples of the fruits and trees. We determine pest and disease levels in the orchards. My boss is an expert on the subject of pesticides and the like. He consults closely with the farmers to give them the appropriate treatment applications for all of the problems they may face.

Orchard scouting and consulting is a great way for the farmer to use less spray on crops. They are informed of the health of the orchards and do not need to spray if there isn't a problem or that the problem is not severe enough. It also helps to prevent resistance. When one treatment is used frequently it may become ineffective. Alternating treatments is key to keep orchards healthy.

Its not a common proffesion but its definitely an enjoyable one.


tina said...

I want your job! Of course, hubby would say ANY job besides blogging at this point would be an improvement.

All kidding aside, I am never so tickled as when I visit a new blog and find that blogger has blogrolled me. You are the fourth and I am still just as tickled.

I love your irises and the slideshow. I am thinking I will need to borrow this idea for mine later this spring. A great way to showcase so many! I have mainly bearded ones as they are the Tennessee state flower, but am expanding my horizons to the Japanese, Dutch, Reticulata, Dwarf and Siberian. Can't wait to see them all!

Have you joined Blotanical? It is a garden directory of garden blogs. Over 1000 are registered. A good way to find like minded folks (though you are doing a fabulous job) and for those folks to find you. I'm glad I found you!

Bee said...

Orchard scout! How fascinating . . . I didn't know a thing about it.

I would just like to say: I ADORE IRISES.

tina said...

Flowergirl, Email me at I'll hook you up, all the answers you may or may not want.:) But loading pics is easy. In the edit mode, click on the little picture (right next to the check mark: which is a spell check). Once you click on that picture icon, it will bring up a menu, find your pictures and double click on the appropriate picture then click upload. Once the pic is inserted you can drag it where you want it to go. The easiest way is to put it in the middle because when it is on the left or right, you usually have to have the text in place to hold the spacing. It takes time to work with it, but you'll get it. Gee, you already have a cool widget I want! Any other questions, just email me at the above address. It is also on my profile. HOpe this helps. tina