Grand Traverse County Farmers Assess Damage to Fruit Crop

Below freezing temperatures seem to have damaged fruit crops across Northern Michigan.

But farmers say it’s too early to say how much of their harvest may have been lost.

Dennis Hoxsie say’s they did everything they could to prevent this kind of damage to their apple crop, even running frost fans. But as he showed us this morning, a number of trees still got hit.

“It’s possible some of these blossoms, the side blooms, may be okay, but we won’t know that for a few days. It takes a while for things to happen. What it equates to is a year without a paycheck. The trees still grow, we still have to maintain the trees, but there won’t be any return at the end if it’s been a pretty major wipeout,” said Dennis.  

Right now farmers are walking through their fields, looking at their trees and say within the next couple of days they’ll have a better idea of just how much damage was done, and where the growing season heads from here.

“They’ll be a lot of people doing just what we’re doing right now, cutting buds and looking at their orchards and just trying to evaluate what they really have. If in fact there was substantial damage, we’re going to have to cut back on some of the things we do,” noted Dennis.

It’s a similar story for Paul Hubbell at Orchard View Farms where his apple and cherry trees also saw damage from freezing.

“I can tell you there is significant damage up and down the fruit growing regions, significant damage. We’re going to stay optimistic. We’ll have some good years and some bad years, hopefully the good years will be more than the bad years,” said Hubbell.