Total Cherry Visit 2015

The first visit was to Pett Bottom, one of the FW Mansfield farms, one of Total key suppliers. They have softfruit as well as a big topfruit production and are arguably one of the biggest cherry growers in the UK.
The first visit was to Pett Bottom, one of the FW Mansfield farms, one of Total key suppliers. They have softfruit as well as a big topfruit production and are arguably one of the biggest cherry growers in the UK.
Although this farm has no cherry orchards it does have strawberries and apricots. The trees were planted 3-4 years ago, and are now coming into production.On the hill opposite young apricot trees.
Although this farm has no cherry orchards it does have strawberries and apricots. The trees were planted 3-4 years ago, and are now coming into production.On the hill opposite young apricot trees.
The apricot trees from close up, these were planted in 2013. These trees flower in February, while there is still a chance of frost, but here at Pett Bottom there are many varieties to spread the risk as well as harvest times. The green fields on the left in the distance will soon be planted with apricot trees.
The apricot trees from close up, these were planted in 2013. These trees flower in February, while there is still a chance of frost, but here at Pett Bottom there are many varieties to spread the risk as well as harvest times. The green fields on the left in the distance will soon be planted with apricot trees.
Covered strawberry production in the background.
Covered strawberry production in the background.
These apricots were planted in 2012 and of the Carmingo series. The first in the series to be harvested will be the Tom cots.
These apricots were planted in 2012 and of the Carmingo series. The first in the series to be harvested will be the Tom cots.
Jon Clark, Total Cherry taking a closer look at the fruit. There has been a resurgence in planting in the UK where the growing season is long and slow which gives great fruit.
Jon Clark, Total Cherry taking a closer look at the fruit. There has been a resurgence in planting in the UK where the growing season is long and slow which gives great fruit.
Harvest will start in the third week of July.
Harvest will start in the third week of July.
Tom Hulme, AC Hulme & Sons with Jon. Tom grows both cherries and apricots. The apricots here at Preston Hill were planted 8 years ago.
Tom Hulme, AC Hulme & Sons with Jon. Tom grows both cherries and apricots. The apricots here at Preston Hill were planted 8 years ago.
At AC Hulme they use different covering plastics to extend the cherry season, by varying the light levels.
At AC Hulme they use different covering plastics to extend the cherry season, by varying the light levels.
Tom has 17 ha of cherries here on the Hoaden Court Farm. These are the Merchant variety.
Tom has 17 ha of cherries here on the Hoaden Court Farm. These are the Merchant variety.
This the Kordia variety, Tom explained that the fruit set was down due to cold weather this year.
This the Kordia variety, Tom explained that the fruit set was down due to cold weather this year.
The size of the cherries should be good this year, judging by the fruit on the trees at the moment.
The size of the cherries should be good this year, judging by the fruit on the trees at the moment.
This farm has a mix of traditional and modern covering sytems.
This farm has a mix of traditional and modern covering sytems.
Tom also grows apples here.
Tom also grows apples here.
These are the Penny variety, this also looks like it will produce big sizes.
These are the Penny variety, this also looks like it will produce big sizes.
The plum harvest will start in week 31 with the Opal variety, Victoria will be 5-6 Aug and Jubelium on 8 Aug.
The plum harvest will start in week 31 with the Opal variety, Victoria will be 5-6 Aug and Jubelium on 8 Aug.
Tom & Jon walking the plum orchards.
Tom & Jon walking the plum orchards.
Next stop was CE Murch, who are trialling a UFO (Upright Fruiting Offshoots) system.
Next stop was CE Murch, who are trialling a UFO (Upright Fruiting Offshoots) system.
These white sheets of plastic keep the weeds at bay as well as reflecting the light.
These white sheets of plastic keep the weeds at bay as well as reflecting the light.
Most of the growers we spoke to said they had had a lot of delay in getting the covering on this year due a lot of wind.
Most of the growers we spoke to said they had had a lot of delay in getting the covering on this year due a lot of wind.
…
This is the UFO system, the trees grow at a 70 degree angle and the cherries form on the off shoots. These were planted in January 2013 there is less fruit this year because the tunnels came down in strong winds earlier in the year which caused damage to the trees.
This is the UFO system, the trees grow at a 70 degree angle and the cherries form on the off shoots. These were planted in January 2013 there is less fruit this year because the tunnels came down in strong winds earlier in the year which caused damage to the trees.
This systems makes the trees easier to harvest and prune as the branches are trained along the lines. One disadvantage is that you get less trees per hectare.
This systems makes the trees easier to harvest and prune as the branches are trained along the lines. One disadvantage is that you get less trees per hectare.
Charles Atkins with Jon, Charles also grows raspberries, 1 ha in glasshouses and 1 ha in tunnels.
Charles Atkins with Jon, Charles also grows raspberries, 1 ha in glasshouses and 1 ha in tunnels.
The cherry trees at Owens Court, one of the FW Mansfields' farms. The tunnels here are higher than the others which we saw, this gives better airflow and allows for bigger trees.
The cherry trees at Owens Court, one of the FW Mansfields' farms. The tunnels here are higher than the others which we saw, this gives better airflow and allows for bigger trees.
This orchard was voted Best Cherry Orchard in 2014, a great accolade as the voters were other growers!
This orchard was voted Best Cherry Orchard in 2014, a great accolade as the voters were other growers!
This is the sweetheart variety which is showing a good crop set.
This is the sweetheart variety which is showing a good crop set.
These are Regina cherries.
These are Regina cherries.
The cherries are grown under the watchful eye of Peter Foster, who got involved with cherries at a the tender age of 5 when he picked them with his mother. He is pictured here with Jon and the Skeena variety.
The cherries are grown under the watchful eye of Peter Foster, who got involved with cherries at a the tender age of 5 when he picked them with his mother. He is pictured here with Jon and the Skeena variety.
These orchards are very neat and well structured.
These orchards are very neat and well structured.
In this part the covers still need to get put in place, again wind has hampered the process.
In this part the covers still need to get put in place, again wind has hampered the process.
These trees are 6-7 years old, the cherries look great and should produce a premium crop with big sizes. Peter with the Lapin cherries, the trees look healthy with good extension growth and a good crop.
These trees are 6-7 years old, the cherries look great and should produce a premium crop with big sizes. Peter with the Lapin cherries, the trees look healthy with good extension growth and a good crop.
The trees here are grown as naturally as possible, but are not quite organic.
The trees here are grown as naturally as possible, but are not quite organic.
The start of the harvest brings 300 pickers to the farm, a lot of them come back year on year and are experienced, which is great to teach the new comers.
The start of the harvest brings 300 pickers to the farm, a lot of them come back year on year and are experienced, which is great to teach the new comers.
At Norton Farm, another FW Mansfield site Peter made some radical changes and has made a huge difference here with his years of knowledge and experience.
At Norton Farm, another FW Mansfield site Peter made some radical changes and has made a huge difference here with his years of knowledge and experience.
This the Penny cherry, there is a very good fruit set here.
This the Penny cherry, there is a very good fruit set here.
The Kordia variety which I am assured that when I taste it I won't want to eat any other variety!
The Kordia variety which I am assured that when I taste it I won't want to eat any other variety!
These tunnels are of the Voen system which gives great ventilation, good for the fruit and also the cherry pickers.
These tunnels are of the Voen system which gives great ventilation, good for the fruit and also the cherry pickers.
There are also plums grown at Norton farm, this is the Jubileum variety.
There are also plums grown at Norton farm, this is the Jubileum variety.
This is a very traditional plum – the Victoria.
This is a very traditional plum – the Victoria.
Jon and Peter inspecting the plum crop.
Jon and Peter inspecting the plum crop.
Peter is showing the Reeves plums which he said will be big and have good skin finish.
Peter is showing the Reeves plums which he said will be big and have good skin finish.
This is the Opal which will be the first to be picked.
This is the Opal which will be the first to be picked.
…
Peter and Jon posing for the camera at last!
Peter and Jon posing for the camera at last!
The last stop on the tour was G Charlton, the main offices for the Total Worldfresh team in Kent. Where as well as cherries there is, not surprisingly a huge strawberry and raspberry production. The cherries here are grown on a walled system, trees planted 1m apart, which give more light to the trees. James Weekes and Jon checking the progress of the cherries.
The last stop on the tour was G Charlton, the main offices for the Total Worldfresh team in Kent. Where as well as cherries there is, not surprisingly a huge strawberry and raspberry production. The cherries here are grown on a walled system, trees planted 1m apart, which give more light to the trees. James Weekes and Jon checking the progress of the cherries.
These were planted in 2012 from G3 root stock, each tunnel has a full fertigation and irrigation system.
These were planted in 2012 from G3 root stock, each tunnel has a full fertigation and irrigation system.
The tunnels here are from the Voen system, great for ventilation but wind and rain can cause slight problems.
The tunnels here are from the Voen system, great for ventilation but wind and rain can cause slight problems.
There are 170 acres of strawberries, 30 acres of raspberries and 30 acres of cherries here. Jon is checking out the strawberry crop.
There are 170 acres of strawberries, 30 acres of raspberries and 30 acres of cherries here. Jon is checking out the strawberry crop.
Great shot of the table top growing system.
Great shot of the table top growing system.
The size, quality and taste of these Morano strawberries is very impressive. Week 24 was the first peak week of the season, 250 tonnes were harvested. The next peak will be at the beginning of August when it is expected that more than 300 tonnes will be harvested.
The size, quality and taste of these Morano strawberries is very impressive. Week 24 was the first peak week of the season, 250 tonnes were harvested. The next peak will be at the beginning of August when it is expected that more than 300 tonnes will be harvested.
…

Sign up for our daily Newsletter and stay up to date with all the latest news!

Subscribe I am already a subscriber

You are using software which is blocking our advertisements (adblocker).

As we provide the news for free, we are relying on revenues from our banners. So please disable your adblocker and reload the page to continue using this site.
Thanks!

Click here for a guide on disabling your adblocker.