Winter is not a time of rest in the Grieb Ranch family orchard of 60 trees. Winter means preparing for Spring, which in turn will bring the buds on the fruit and nut trees that eventually result in a bounty of fruit or nuts for the family to enjoy. A secret to an enjoyable family orchard is to plant a wide variety of fruit and nut trees with a wide expanse of ripening dates in order to eat tree-ripened fruit through the Summer and into the Fall with last apples coming off at Thanksgiving.
There are several winter tasks for the Grieb family to carry out in the family orchard that will yield fruit in the proper season. First off, is winter pruning of the fruit trees. Pears, apples, peaches, and the like, each have different ways to be pruned, so it is important to know what kind of tree you are pruning in order to be prune appropriately. Then it is important to know how that particular variety of fruit or nut tree likes to be pruned.
Secondly, is the replacing and planting of new bare root fruit or nut trees.This year in the Grieb family orchard, two trees were replaced. One was replaced due a bear damaging a young tree and another small tree was run over by a vehicle. The Grieb family has a tradition of dedicating new trees to immediate and extended family members. One of the new trees, a Florahome Pear, has been dedicated to the newest Grieb family member, Payson. The other tree, a Santa Barbara Peach, is dedicated to his mother, Jessica.