Wednesday, December 4, 2013

Play That Funky Music.....

So before I am officially pronounced flipped...a prize to the first person who makes the connection between the title and this post.  Anyway, I apologize for the delay, but last Wednesday (the day before Thanksgiving) Brian and Tim B had one more field mission themselves.  For the past several years they have been monitoring the growth of cherry trees in a customer's orchard way up North near Traverse City.  And not just any cherry trees, but ones that have been sprayed with the tree growth enhancer Fase2.  Trees receiving applications of Fase2 during the season have had more growth in girth of branches and trunk, as well as being taller than those that were not sprayed.  Well the lateness of final harvests at the NCRS made this trip a little later, and wouldn't you know it, they were met with around 6 inches of new snow when they got there.  Tim can hardly contain his excitement for the tasks that await. 
Below we see Brian using some tree calipers to measure the width of the trunk of a cherry tree, at a set height off the ground for each one.  They did measurements on a number of the same trees that they have been keeping track of for the past three years.  There were trees of different ages, both sprayed and unsprayed.  But the results have been encouraging both in these research blocks as well as with fruit trees and bushes like blueberries around the country.   So don't be left out if you grow fruit.
These particular trees are Tart Cherry trees.  And did you know that Michigan is the number 1 state for Tart Cherry production?  Well it is.  Remember that next time you bite into a cherry pie.  And also thank Brian and Tim for helping bring Fase2 to market to enable even more cherry production without having to apply more fertilizer to the environment.  Well that was a wild cherry adventure wasn't it?
I will say that we are now into the part of the year where all of us researcher types are busily preparing our research reports so that we can share them with all of you out there in blog-land.  So there isn't much to show these days in the way of exciting fertilizer missions and other  adventures at the NCRS.   But there will be several winter missions from time to time out into the Land of Liquid to spread the word and to start preparations for next season.  So the reports will be fewer, but no less informative and entertaining when they do appear.  So check back from time to time.  But in the meantime, this would be a great opportunity to revisit some of the previous 361 posts of your favorite blog.  (And you better have said Live From the NCRS!)