A Look Inside the Groves – September 2018 Hale Groves Update
Early morning sunshine dries the last drops of dew as we inspect new Navel Oranges. Although the Navels are still green, the consistent afternoon rains have helped develop nice sized fruit, soon to turn orange and mature into their tempting sweetness.
In the grove wildlife is our constant companion, and we never know what we may see around the next corner. Along this row of citrus trees, an alert fawn peeks out from the branches but remains cautiously in the shadow as we pass by.
We do many jobs to ensure ideal growing conditions for our fruit, and in the summer months mowing is a vital part of grove maintenance. Properly mowed turf allows essential airflow, while grass clippings return welcomed nutrition to the soil.
Much of our citrus growing work is informed by both tradition and experience. Here, a tree in our 47 year-old Navel Orange grove displays a sturdy green branch filled with vibrant leaves, and healthy, sun-drenched Navel Oranges.
Work in the grove begins at sunrise or before, and as such, we often see egrets or herons begin their day. A skilled and patient hunter, this white egret stalks a corner of the grove in search of an early morning meal.
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