Spring is beginning to make its welcome appearance in the Okanagan Valley; it is refreshing to feel the warmth of the sun on my face, to hear the birds singing for joy and to see living, green things sprouting up from the ground. The landscape is coming alive again!
At this time of year it is so clear that the Bella Vista, where our main farm and market is located, is a unique microclimate that is especially suited to growing fruit. I am spending my time romping across the greening grass with the kids, hunting for buttercups amongst the sagebrush and tulip shoots in the garden. It is time to start tending the flower beds and raking the lawn at our house. In contrast, our other farm that is located 15 minutes away in Spallumcheen is still covered in snow! I don’t mean a skiff either. I’m talking about at least a foot! Rather than gardening, my sister is practically still singing jingle bells and pulling the kids on the toboggan across the winter wonderland.
So what is the reason for this dramatic difference? On the Bella Vista our farm is situated on a south-facing slope whereas our Spallumcheen location is on the north side of a hill. The difference in locations does lessen as the season progresses, but right now it couldn’t be more obvious. Amazingly, in the long run, it all evens out. By the end of spring bloom both locations prove themselves to be among the best places in the world to grow apples. This is thanks to the moderating effect of Okanagan Lake, which creates an ideal climate for growing tree fruit. Our farms have very few fungus and pest problems because of their warm, dry locations. This means less spraying is required and the trees produce better quality fruit.
With the snow gone here, we are working hard to prepare for another season at Davison Orchards. The gift shop is taking form, the preserves are almost all canned, the menu at the cafe is looking tantalizing, and the animals are ready for some excitement. We hope you are as excited about opening day on May 1st as we are. See you then!
Rachel, for the Davison Family
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