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process of apple cultivation

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剪定

1.Pruning branches (January to March)

Pruning goes on throughout the winter and early spring, as workers thin out branches to allow maximum sunlight into the trees.
  施肥

2.Fertilizing (March to April)

After the snow melts, growers prepare the soil with manure fertilizer and compost.
草刈り

3.Mowing weeds (April~)

In apple orchards, grasses play a role of preventing the erosion of land caused by rain, as well as supplying organic matter.  However when grasses grow too high, they cause malnutrition and a shortage of water in apple trees, which can lead to an outbreak of pests.  To prevent this, growers mow weeds 4 to 6 times a year.

  農薬散布

4. Using pesticide (April~)

  1. To protect apple trees from disease and insects, pesticides are used.  The growers comply with the strict Japanese standards of pesticide use.  They also pay attention to the environment when spraying.

授粉

5.Pollination (May ~)

All varieties of apple trees require some cross-pollination for fruit to grow.  For a flower to develop into an apple, the pollen produced by one flower must be transferred to another flower.  Since pollination by hand takes time and labor, bees are used usually for pollination.

  実すぐり 6.Sorting out irregular fruit (May ~)
The irregular apples are carefully removed from the tree by hands to make sure that there are no immature or bruised ones.  This is done to grow bigger and more delicious apples.
袋掛け

7.Bagging  (June to July)

  1. Growers bag apples one by one to protect them from diseases and pests, and to promote coloring and longer storage life as well.  There are “bagged” and “un-bagged” apples.


  袋はぎ

8.Removing bags (August to September)

Bags are removed from apples from August to September depending on the variety.  Once an apple is stripped, its color immediately brightens because it is exposed to a lot of sunlight.  Some varieties sunburn easily.  As a result, they are put into a maximum of 3 times, which are then gradually removed to prevent burning.
葉とりと玉まわし

9.Removing leaves and rotating apples (August to November)

After removing the bags, growers thin the leaves surrounding apples so that they get maximum sunlight.  The apples are also rotated to receive sunlight on the whole surface.  Now the harvest period rolls around.
  収穫 10.Harvest (August to November)
The grower begins harvesting when the fruit is at its peak flavor and the color has fully developed.  The apples are handpicked to make sure the stem remains attached and that no bruising takes place.  Then they are sorted depending on the color, size, shape and spots.  They are delivered to the tables of valued customers.