The big chill could kill the Apple Castle's crop
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Published: Monday, March 26, 2012
Updated: Monday, March 26, 2012 21:03
WILMINGTON TOWNSHIP, Pa.-- WILMINGTON TOWNSHIP, Pa.-- A week of summer-like weather in mid-March caused peach blossoms to appear three weeks early and the apple blossoms are nearly there as well. However, a big chill has prompted frost warnings for the area putting local orchards at risk.
Our cameras headed out to the historic Apple Castle in Wilmington Township where the team at the family farm is preparing for some sleepless nights. They'll light some bonfires and pull propane-based heaters through the groves to try and keep the air temperature from dropping below 28 degrees. The sixth generation to head this Lawrence County farm, Steven Johnston, tells us they're expecting lots of restless nights because the frost season carries well into May.
The Apple Castle specializes in a variety of fruit trees including Honey Crisp apples, plums, peaches and nectarines. This is the first major frost season young Steven Johnston is leading the charge since he took over farm operations for the family this year. The threat of frost should end in May, just in time for Johnston's wedding. He and Ashley Musser are planning their wedding for May 26.