Vented Orchard Covers to Protect Cherries Against Rain & Hail [fi02]
|Status||completed in 2017|
|Project Lead||Coral Beach Farms Ltd.|
|Funding Partners||Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada, BC Ministry of Agriculture, Coral Beach Farms Ltd|
A BC cherry orchard tested vented orchard covers as a tool to protect tender fruit against rain and hail damage. The technology was pioneered in Europe, where it has been used to substantially reduce rain and hail related fruit damage, and increase water use efficiency in orchards. The project evaluated the risks and the economic benefits of using vented orchard covers (in combination with wind machines) under current growing conditions in the Okanagan. Project findings will assist producers to assess the potential for this technology to reduce vulnerability to impacts associated with climate change.
The evaluation compared fruit quality and water use efficiency for cherries grown inside and outside the vented covers, gathered data over three years and provides a cost-benefit analysis that has been shared with other growers through publications, site visits and presentations.