Tale of a Scientist Farmer

Ed Magee spends his days thinking about sunlight. When he isn’t working on his  38-acre orchard of white peaches and nectarines in Vernalis, California, he’s in a  lab studying the energy of electrons. This scientist-farmer’s day job aids NASA  researchers in determining the elemental mix of stars. Ed is a scientist through  and through and he takes a very measured and managed approach to his farming  as well. Not only do they prune their trees to reach a shorter height of between  6 and 8 feet for easier picking but they also believe that by not treating their soil  with nitrogen during the growing season their trees work harder to produce more  sugar for their fruit.

Ed has always been a small family farmer who is concerned about doing things  in a sustainable way. Ed uses low-flow micro sprinklers on his orchard. Instead  of irrigating his trees through flood irrigation, which can be wasteful, Ed’s  micro-sprinklers water a six to eight food circle just around the base of the tree  – enough to cover only the root area and nothing more. He manages the water  application process based upon the health of the trees, time of year and weather.

E&M farm owl boxEd is also a recipient of our “Farm  Steward program.” This year, during  the spring, we funded and installed an  owl box on his property to help him  with pest control. It’s a great, natural  way to address rodents who may be  looking for water by gnawing through  his irrigation system or that might go  after the roots of trees.

Local & Regional: As your office  fruit delivery company we work hard  to bring you fruit grown as close to your workplace as we can. Summer time is  the best time of year for local and regional fruit. This week for our east coast  customers we have Rising Star Yellow Peaches from Three Springs Fruit Farm in  Aspers, CA. On the west coast we have Ed Magee’s White Lady White Peaches,  and organic Grand Sweet Nectarines from Olson Organics in Kingsburg, CA. We  will also feature Michigan grown Blueberries in our midwest boxes. Please check  out our mixes which describe the local and regional product selections by area at  www.fruitguys.com/mix.

Enjoy and be fruitful!

- Chris Mittelstaedt chris@fruitguys.com

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The FruitGuys Magazine is your source for workplace culture, trends and healthy living. Previously known as The FruitGuys Almanac, the Magazine began in 2007. Editors and contributors include nationally known journalists and food writers. Submissions and suggestions can be sent to the editor.