Despite Harsh Winter, Michigan Cherry Crops Stay Strong

TRAVERSE CITY (WWJ) — Michigan cherry and grape farmers have been waiting to see what effect last winter’s brutal cold and above average snowfall had on their crops.

The tough winter with its brutal cold affected the rest of us, but its effect on Michigan cash crops, like cherries, has been minimal according to grower Marc Santucci, who said his trees are loaded with tart cherries.

“The winter really didn’t hurt them that much,” Santucci said. “Only the youngest trees were damaged at all.”

Santucci said while the fruit looks to be in good shape, there is one effect that the winter had on Michigan’s signature fruit.

“They’re going to be later than they normally are,” Santucci said. “And they’re going to seem even later than that because they’ve been early for many of the past five years.”

The lateness of the crop will mean, unfortunately, you won’t see local fruit at this year’s National Cherry Festival in Traverse City which takes place between July 5 and 12.

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