HI AND WELCOME TO SPRING.
The new season is off to a flying start, plenty of early potatoes have been planted already.
I was talking to a contractor planting poppies… his comment was interesting – “I’ve planted 200 hectares of poppies so far and the worst paddock has gone in better than the best paddock last year”! Let’s hope this continues for the rest of the planting season for all crops.
Don’t forget, reduce your need for luck by crossing and dotting as many ‘one per centers’ as you can.
Best wishes for the new season,
Andrew and the team at Cherry Hill Coolstores
IN THIS ISSUE
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BRENDEN’S SPRING REPORT
So far, this season cutting has gone to plan with very few issues arising thus far.
The warm dry start to spring has put a large amount of pressure on the cutting schedule. Early planting varieties jumped the queue and pushed some seed that was destined to be pre-cut into an early spring cut.
With the season earlier than normal, growers need to check the status of their seed and if possible supply us with a rough planting schedule, to help us plan when to get the seed and sets out of the coolstore, to avoid any delays in planting.
We wish you the best for the upcoming season and hope it is kind to all. If you would like to discuss your seed call me or the team on (03) 6426 1590 or email me at email@example.com.
Brenden Keep, General Manager Cherry Hill Coolstores.
CHERRY HILL COOLSTORES SEED GUARANTEE
Our Seed Management Services. Cherry Hill Coolstores will guarantee our services on Seed Growers seed. If you buy someone else’s certified seed, which is presented to Cherry Hill in good condition, and it breaks down, we will replace our cutting and services at no charge.
This guarantee specifically refers to seed piece breakdown (i.e. rot), and refers to seed which is delivered directly to Cherry Hill Coolstores from the seed paddock for chemical application, coolstoring and cutting. In order for this guarantee to be valid, the Buyer must make claims within 24-hours of the seed leaving Cherry Hill Coolstores and before planting.
In order for this guarantee to be valid, the buyer must make claims with 24 hours of the seed leaving Cherry Hill and before planting.
There’s more than meets the eye to our Storeman Steve “Mitch” Mitchell.
Steve Mitchell, known affectionately to his friends as simply “Mitch”, is in his seventeenth year at the Cherry Hill Coolstores. Starting in the grading shed, moving into seed cutting and now the Coolstore Storeman, Mitch has an abundance of experience in this industry.
With a diverse and fascinating history it was soon discovered there’s more than meets the eye to this humble, quiet potato storeman! Born and bread in St Helens, Mitch lived most of his life on the East Coast before relocating to the North-West 22 years ago.
At the age of 15, Mitch joined the Navy and spent 4-5 years in Western Australia. Following his return home he ventured in to a range of industries – crayfishing, coal mining, drilling rigs, and fruit picking to name a few … developing a plethora of skills.
After relocating north and when he was ‘picking carrots by hand’ (how times have changed) a mutual friend introduced him to Kevin and Andrew Langmaid and his relationship with Cherry Hill began.
A typical day for Mitch now involves overseeing the coolstore operations, bulk unloading the potatoes, transferral of the stock to the coolstore/cutting/drying room and back to the coolstore again. Mitch has a real passion for the industry however there’s one other love that consumes a fair amount of his time.
Actually two, as we can’t forget his wife Sue! (Sue incidentally, works at Cherry Hill as well and shares Mitch’s recreational interest!).
When asked “what do you like doing in your spare time?” a cheeky grin fills his face and the reply …
“I love cars”!
Mitch has two amazing Holden’s that are his pride and joy. The 1966 HR Holden, sporting personalised number plates OHR–066 (Our HR – and 1966!) was purchased five years ago and is in mint, original condition. It’s a site to be seen and won the Shannon’s Choice Award at this year’s Devonport Car Show.
The second acquisition was only made a month or so ago and is a complete contrast. A 1958 FC Holden completely restored (Mitch has certainly ‘Pimped His Ride’ with this one.) With it’s striking metallic purple duco, V8 engine and distinct air horn we see a different side to Mitch’s usual modest personality.
Weekends are spent cruising and visiting car shows. Mitch and Sue love the social side of sharing their cars with other car enthusiasts and leading a relaxing lifestyle outside of work. In saying that the cars are quickly gathering interest with a flurry of requests for leaver’s dinners and weddings their calendar is filling up fast!
Pictured: main image – Mitch with his 1958 FC Holden. Above top row – Mitch proudly holding the trophy his 1966 HR Holden won at this year’s Devonport Car show, “Winner of the Shannon’s Choice Award”. Bottom row – the amazing original interior of the HR Holden.
KEVIN’S EVENT DIARY FROM YESTERYEAR
In 1959 the Langmaid Brothers planted potato crops for the 1960 harvest. They planted: 10 acres of medium top Brownells; 8 acres big top Brownells; and 7 acres of early Bismarks. Now we will focus on the 10 acres of Brownells.
The paddock was ploughed from pasture with three furrow plough and prepared for the seeding with Algerian oats to take place as soon as a rain came, which obliged us in late February. The paddock was deep ripped with a Chisel plough towed by small crawler tractor with 5″ wings on points, then firmed and planted with the oats. They grew very well, and then the oats were strip fed to the cows, which was completed by mid August after which the ewes and lambs finished off grazing. The red basalt soil did not bog too much as we did not feed on wet days as our intention was to plant potatoes in early October.
The seed was cut by hand in to bags and dusted with powdery old cement (much better than new) to dry, ready for planting.
We were still planting our potatoes at this time by hand as we had not yet up graded to a Myers needle planter, which took place a little later. We top dressed with a drop spreader straight on the oat stubble – twelve bags to the acre of a mix of phosphate, potash, sulphate of ammonia (what else I cannot remember) to plough in on the crop.
The crop went in as scheduled, ploughed in with a three furrow plough, and worked to a good seed bed over the next four weeks or so. The planting row width was 30″, there was no irrigation for us yet for this crop. The crop was scarified by horse and harrowed after there was row emergent, after that a Yankee scarifier was put through before any flower evidence again horse drawn.
The crop then was moulded at the flowering stage, again horse drawn, which took place after a good rain. We had favourable weather conditions and the crop finished off really well, in fact best yield for some time. Harvest started 2nd April 1960, I remember that date because it is the day my daughter was born. We were using a new port twin row digger, the sample I remember was excellent –not too big and plenty of tubers like oranges they were and no disease. Our first order of three loads in pockets (sugar bags) bound for Sydney, sold through the merchant P.D.S. and Clements and Marshall. In Devonport I think the price paid to us was about 30 pounds per ton, the yield around 15 tons per acre, successful crop for the times.
Interesting times, just when new and better machinery were becoming available and irrigation just around the corner, and chemicals for weed control and disease soon to be introduced.
Kevin is now retired, however can regularly be found out at the Cherry Hill Coolstores. He lives in East Devonport and would describe himself as very happily retired with still a key interest in Cherry Hill. Andrew and Brenden regularly refer to Kevin for his advice and opinions.
TESTIMONIAL … “NOTHING EVER SEEMS TO BE A PROBLEM“
“We’ve been growing potatoes for over 10 years now and have been working with Cherry Hill Coolstores for the majority of this time.
Cherry Hill are always helpful and friendly, nothing ever seems to be a problem for them. Access to our seed is only a phone call away and we can see our cut at any stage.
Their professional approach to seed handling in cool storage makes our lives easier, it takes the pressure off us – as they look after our product with the same care we would. We pre-cut our seed and the new facilities at Cherry Hill are fantastic for facilitating that. I absolutely recommend them.”
Shane Johnston – Owner, Myrtle Farm, Deloraine
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