Predicted 2020 apple harvest dates for southwest Michigan

Apple harvest for most of the state is a few days behind normal and a few days ahead of last year.

Apples on a tree
Photo by Mark Longstroth, MSU Extension.

The predicted harvest dates for every weather station are now available at Michigan State University’s Enviroweather website. The 2020 spring cold temperatures generally delayed apple tree development. Most of the state experienced a late bloom except the very southeastern part of Michigan. In general, 2020 predicted harvest dates are a few days later than normal. Most of the state is only a few days behind normal and nearly equal to, or a few days ahead of last year.

A severe freeze on May 9 reduced crop loads for many orchards. For southwest region orchards, relatively calm wind conditions during the freeze hours increased damage in low areas. Most areas bloomed a week late except southeast Michigan, which was a only few days late. Warm weather returned mid- to late May, which sped up bloom. In general, apple blocks have a mix of crop loads with most near average. Blocks with light crop loads will mature 3 or 4 days sooner than the predicted harvest dates. Heavy crop loads will mature up to 7 days later than the predicted dates. If hot stressful weather occurs in August or September, apple maturity will be advanced. The 2020 predicted harvest dates are listed in Table 1.

The normal harvest dates for other varieties are listed in Table 2 for the central southwest Michigan area. The predicted dates for other non-modeled varieties are a rough estimate based on the McIntosh, Jonathan and Red Delicious predicted dates. ReTain application should be applied 30 DBH (days before harvest). Harvista can be applied 3 to 7 DBH. Use Table 2, 2020 for predicted harvest dates for other varieties to time ReTain applications and adjust for varieties and locations.

Table 1. 2020 predicted peak harvest dates.

 

Full bloom dates 2020

Predicted harvest dates 2020

Station

McIntosh

Jons

Reds

McIntosh

Jons

Reds

Observer

SWMREC

16-May

17-May

17-May

13-Sep

24-Sep

30-Sep

Shane

Deerfield

10-May

14-May

14-May

9-Sep

23-Sep

5-Oct

Tritten

Romeo

20-May

21-May

22-May

18-Sep

29-Sep

5-Oct

Tritten

Peach Ridge

21-May

22-May

22-May

19-Sep

30-Sep

6-Oct

Irish-Brown

Hart

25-May

25-May

26-May

24-Sep

5-Oct

12-Oct

Irish-Brown

NWMHRS

27-May

28-May

28-May

27-Sep

11-Oct

19-Oct

Rothwell


Table 2. Normal and predicted 2020 peak harvest dates for apple varieties in central Berrien County in southwest Michigan based on weather data at the Southwest Michigan Research and Extension Center, Benton Harbor, MI.

Variety

Normal date

2019 Predicted peak harvest date

2020 Predicted peak harvest date

Paula Red

22-Aug

28-Aug

25-Aug

Zestar

22-Aug

28-Aug

25-Aug

Gingergold

20-Aug

26-Aug

23-Aug

McIntosh

10-Sep

16-Sep

13-Sep

Gala

8-Sep

14-Sep

11-Sep

Early Fuji

3-Sep

10-Sep

6-Sep

Honeycrisp

13-Sep

20-Sep

15-Sep

Empire

19-Sep

26-Sep

21-Sep

Jonathan

22-Sep

30-Sep

24-Sep

Jonagold

22-Sep

30-Sep

24-Sep

Golden Delicious

25-Sep

1-Oct

27-Sep

Red Delicious

28-Sep

7-Oct

30-Sep

Ida Red

5-Oct

15-Oct

7-Oct

Rome

5-Oct

15-Oct

7-Oct

Fuji

20-Oct

28-Oct

22-Oct

Braeburn

20-Oct

28-Oct

22-Oct

Goldrush

26-Oct

3-Nov

28-Oct

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