​​Green's Pleasant Springs Orchard

Integrated Pest Management

Apples are one of the most difficult crops to grow. Apples are not native to North America. They haven’t evolved to resist the pests we have here.

We practice Integrated Pest Management (IPM) which involves monitoring pest traps and weather stations, preventing pests and using minimal pesticides. Only if pest levels are high enough to be economically harmful will we apply a chemical spray to our crop. This attention to detail reduces the amount of chemicals we apply to our apples by 33 to 50 percent, compared to conventional methods.

Pest prevention is very important in our orchards. Ways that we prevent pests include:

  • Monitoring the trees to identify pest problems at an early stage;
  • Keeping the orchards tidy and mowed to reduce pest habitat;
  • Spraying fallen leaves with a compound that quickens their decay. This eliminates an important habitat for pests during the winter months;
  • Removing infected parts of apples and trees to prevent the spread of disease;
  • Encouraging beneficial insects like parasitic wasps to flourish and prey on pests;
  • Using a mating disruption technique to prevent a specific species from reproducing.

Leaf Analysis and Soil Tests

Every July we take a sampling of leaves and soil from each section of our orchards and send the samples to the University of Wisconsin Soil and Plant Analysis Lab. The scientists there identify where the soil is sufficient or lacking in certain nutrients.

We can apply the recommended nutrients to the soil to help our plants thrive. This process helps us keep our soil fertile without applying excess nutrients.

Codling moth larvae will tunnel their way to the apple core, damaging the fruit. This trap monitors codling moth activity.

Our Responsibility to the Earth