Cherry crop in Northwest Lower Michigan on track for great harvest over last year

BY MARCY MISNER

Farmers in the northwest Michigan have begun harvesting sweet cherries this week. They say tarts will be ready next week.

Farmers say they’re happy to see a good crop this year after getting none last year. You may recall last year the early, warm March was followed by a late freeze that killed blossoms and ruined the crop.

Bill Johnson is a Benzie county cherry farmer.

“It’s a lot better than it was last year because we got wiped out with March 80 degree temperatures like that. It was one of the shortest crops we’ve ever had. This year is coming back a real good one. The sweets, as you can see, are not a real heavy crop, but they’re a good crop. And the sour cherry crop right through this area is real good. Real good,” Johnson said.

Johnson owns about 800 sweet cherry trees and 2,500 tart cherry trees. He said he prefers his right off the tree, when they’re in season.

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