Wyoming U-Pick Orchard

We started a mini experimental orchard at our home in 2016. If all goes well, we'd like to open a U-pick orchard here in southeast Wyoming. Everything is looking good so far. We even saw some peach blossoms in spring '19. The plants that do well here will be grafted and planted on the farm in spring '20. These species are have survived our Winter: Apple, Peach, Pear, Cherry, Nectarine, Almond, Plumb, and a Fig - yes, a fig. We also have various grapes, but most of that operation is now the vineyard outside of town. We get most of our plants from Stark Bros. They seem to have a good selection of cold-hardy varieties.

Experimental Wyoming U-pick orchard

Year 1

Everything looked good in year one. We had a little bit of chlorosis in the leaves on the peaches and plums, but that's to be expected in our region. The soil out on the farm has a lower PH, so it shouldn't be as much of an issue. Summer 2018 was good for us. We didn't get any hail, so the plants were off to a good start.

Update August 2019:

Year 2, 2019. Our mini orchard has just exploded with growth this year. Some of the trees you can see are (from left to right): Honeycrisp apple, Hardired nectarine, and Reliance peach. Winter was really rough on us so we had a lot of die-back. it got down to -30F at least two nights. Then it both hailed and froze the last week of May. It frosted at the farm in June but we didn't have a thermometer to record to low at that point.

We're still on track to take some cuttings and see what we can get to survive on the farm next year. Growth this summer was excellent so there should be some fruit set next year unless we get a late frost.

Orchard growth year two