Many things should be considered when planning a new orchard. Variety, rootstock, training system and planting spacing all need to be decided well ahead of time. Factors such as weather conditions, soil type, soil pests, water quality, water availability, irrigation system and pest pressures can all influence the decision. Even management factors including labor availability, labor skill level, packing options and marketing outlets should be considered. All these factors might interact in subtle ways. Thus, it is important to carry out a thorough evaluation. A given orchard may perform well in one location but not in another site with different constaints or under a different manager. Studying the topics on this website, talking to experts, conducting soil and water tests and checking weather records and past crops should all be done. In some cases corrective measures such as ripping, soil pH adjustment, installing tile drainage, land leveling, upgrading the irrigation system or soil fumigation may be needed before planting.
Stone Fruit Manual - Designing the Orchard
Stone Fruit Manual - Establishing the Orchard