Washington State is well-known for apple production. The combination of climate and soil makes most of the state ideal for apple production. Some people also associate Washington State with cherry production but most don't realize that Washington's climate also is ideal for growing peaches.
Apples are a very well-known fruit that grows in Washington State. Most varieties of apples grow very well in Eastern Washington and Western Washington. Well-known varieties include Red and Golden Delicious, Gala, Fuji, Braeburn, Granny Smith, Honey Crisp, Cripps Pink and Cameo, among others. Most of these varieties are grafted onto root stocks optimized for local growing conditions. Popular apple orchard areas include Green Bluff, just outside of Spokane. Apples require soil that drains well and full sun. They do better if you refrain from planting them in low-lying areas that could be susceptible to cold air masses. Apples will ripen and be ready for harvest between August 15th and October 31, depending on the variety.
The weather in Washington State, especially in Eastern Washington, is ideal for peach cultivation. Orchards in the Green Bluff area grow a number of varieties of peaches. Many varieties are suitable for home or hobby cultivation, including Ringstar, Flaming Fury, Redhaven, Avalon, Redstar, Vulcan, Reliance and Golden Jubilee. Canadian Harmony, Red Globe and Suncrest are also suitable cultivars for Washington State. Like apples, peach trees require full sun. Avoid low-lying areas where cold air can collect and damage the blossoms or fruit. Peaches require loamy, well-draining soil and will not tolerate soils where water can stand on the surface for more than an hour after a heavy rain. Peaches are generally ready for harvest in August and September in Washington State, depending on the season and peach variety.
Cherrie trees have been popular in Washington for a very long time. In fact, the popular Rainier cherries are named after Mt. Rainier in the Cascade mountain range in Western Washington. Most cherry varieties will grow well in Washington State. Different varieties mature at different rates. By planting two or three different cherry trees, you can begin harvesting in mid-June and continue harvesting to late August. Cherries require full sun and soils that drain well. Like other fruit trees, including apple and peach, avoid planting cherries in low-lying areas where cold air can gather and damage the blossoms and fruit. Cherries generally are ready for harvest in June, July and August, depending on your climate zone and the variety of cherries you are growing.
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