Now that we’ve recovered from last harvest, we’ve been thinking about how to re-invest in the farm, to make things a little bit smoother for next year. One of the challenges we’ve been having when transitioning from bulk trailers to smaller orders, is the desire for single-varieties.
Aside from a couple of exceptional years, we’re mostly used to harvesting orchards in turn. The varieties required were mixed, so there was no real need to move around too much once we were in an orchard. Last season, we found we did a lot of walking around and traipsing back and forth from one end of the farm to the other. The orchards are all mixed in varieties, so we could have a few Yarlington Mill trees at the top of the farm, but another couple at the bottom end. Then the next day, we’d need to collect some Dabinett from the brand new orchard.
Aside from getting our steps up on our pedometers, this proved a bit tricky. We felt that we were always chasing ourselves and we’d never quite be where we needed to be. As we harvest with a little pedestrian Tuthill picker, it meant that we would be dragging it through muddy parts of the farm more often – this in turn would mean we needed to wash our little picker more often, otherwise the fruit would be affected. Taking the picker between orchards also concerned us, due to the fuel we would need to use moving it around.
So, in a bid to reduce unneccessary energy usage we were very kindly offered a second little Tuthill Temperley Pedestrian picker! We were so excited to buy this little chap. It’s a local machine, having spent its life not far away down in Fownhope, Herefordshire. We’ll give it a full look over & a clean up – but it’s in great condition!
Looking forward to the 2022 harvest, we can now plan to have a picker at either end of the farm, or using both simultaneously, to pull orders together even quicker and to make sure we’re doing things as energy efficiently as possible. Hopefully this year, we won’t be out harvesting in the dark – but I’ll believe that when I see it! 🙂
A big thank you to all of our customers from 2021! You’ve all contributed to this little picker and you’re continually helping us work with these orchards to preserve them and retain them.