A lot of love and hard work goes into growing Pink Lady® apples each season! These beloved beauties are the first to blossom and the last to be harvested. It’s this generous growing time on trees that gives Pink Lady® her gorgeous, rosy blush. Here’s how Pink Lady® trees progress from planting to harvest, each one soaking up 200 days of sunshine.
This is where the life cycle of a Pink Lady® apple begins. Growers plant their apple trees during the early spring, when plants cease to grow. They must then wait 2 or 3 years for the trees to start producing fruit. This is the time needed for the branches to reach maturity with a sufficient reserve of nutrients to bear fruit.
Apple Tree Pruning
Trees go dormant between December and February. They have lost all their leaves, and entered their dormancy period. During that time, growers prepare them for the coming cycle. They prune any unnecessary branches to make sure they are evenly distributed and to give the tree vigor.
Pruning apple trees allows for the selection of the branches that will bear the largest fruit and to offer them maximum sunlight exposure. This phase is extremely time-consuming and requires up to 150 hours of work, in other words, just as much as the harvesting phase.
Blossoming in the Spring is key to a successful harvest in the Fall. The lifespan of a flower ranges from 2 to 10 days, therefore the timeframe of pollination is very short.
Thanks to partnerships with beekeepers, growers introduce bees into the orchard during the blossoming period. They can thus ensure a natural pollination process and the successful transformation of flowers into fruit.
Selecting the Flowers
The grower then selects the apple tree flowers with the best exposure to sunlight in order not to overburden the tree and obtain fruit with the right size and color.
Summer is here! In order for Pink Lady® apples to develop all of their organoleptic properties, trees are meticulously thinned by skilled growers. This process removes any damaged, deformed or excess fruits, so that the fruits may be evenly distributed across the tree and have ample space to grow.
During the fruit growth period, it is very important for the tree to be properly irrigated. Thanks to data collected using ground sensors, the grower precisely adjusts the watering using a drip system in order to provide the water and nutrients needed for the tree to grow harmoniously, with minimal waste.
The unique color of Pink Lady® apples is entirely natural, relying only on Mother Nature. The color of the fruit is directly linked to temperature variations between day and night. The cooler the nights and the sunnier the days as harvest draws near, the more colorful the apple will be.
Now comes the exciting time for growers to see the fruits of their labor—harvest! Pink Lady® apples are hand-picked in the orchards and sent to apple packing facilities in large bins. Once apples arrive at facilities, a combination of skilled professionals and cutting-edge agritechnology carefully evaluate each and every Pink Lady® apple against established quality standards.
Apples are then packed and prepped for shipments to grocery stores across the United States. The apples that don’t meet the brand’s quality standards are sent to be processed for delicious secondary Pink Lady® products like juice, dried slices, kombucha and more. This helps create a no waste approach and supports regenerative farming practices.
Growing Pink Lady® apples is a beautiful partnership between our dedicated growers and Mother Nature. We’re grateful to Share the Love with you!