I have grown cherries for a couple of years now. When starting, I realized very early in the journey that protecting cherries for maximum yield and returns was a real deal.
Throughout growth, cherries are enemies of many. And the rain and hail top the list of enemies. The rain causes cracking reducing yield and marketable cherries.
How do you protect your cherries from rain? Here’s the cherry rain cover comprehensive guide (2021) to help you.
Let’s dive in.
What are Cherries?
What are Cherries
Cherries are small edible stone fruits of plants of the genus Prunus. The fruit is small, rounded, and yellow to red when ripe. They originated from Asia and were introduced to Europe by birds. Cherries grow in areas with warm and cold climates.
Cherry comes in two main types, sweet or sour.
All cherries are nutritious and pack vitamins, fiber, and minerals. They are good for your health.
Growing cherries is a serious business. You have to prepare for costs arising from irrigation, labor, and protection.
Now, here’s how you go growing your cherries.
- Choose your desired varieties sour, sweet, or a mix of them.
- Propagate through the grafting method by use of root cuttings or seeds
- Select at least two varieties for cross-pollination if a sweet variety
- Space your cherries 5 – 6 feet apart in rows.
- Water your cherries after planting
- Prune your cherries for healthier fruits
- Harvest after 3 to 4 years
- lastly, deliver your harvest to a facility to be packaged
Threats That Can Cause Loss of Your Cherry
Cherries are vulnerable to damage from rain and other threats as they near harvest.
Annoying, isn’t it?
You get a wide variation in your harvest each year. Other threats include
- Diseases for example bacterial canker
- Insects such as Japanese wood borer, aphid, and fruit fly
- Birds like the European starling
- Other pests among them flying foxes
And what is worse?
These lead to many damages resulting in reduced yield in your cherries. You can expect the following damages
- Cracked cherries
- Rotten cherries
- Immature fruits
- Knocked off cherries when they are hopping and foraging
- Eaten cherries either wholly or partially
- Pecked or puncture cherries
The Role of Covers in Growing Cherry
If you’re going to reap maximum returns from your cherries, take action to protect them from the threats.
By using covers, you can realize the following benefits
- Minimizing cracked fruits because of rain
- Improving yields and quality of your produce
- Wind protection of your fruit
- Hail protection of your cherries
- Sunshine protection of your fruit
- Weather independent harvesting
Popular Types of Nets and Covers Used by Growers
Rain covers eliminate the cherries cracking caused by rain and frost.
Other types of nets and covers are available to protect your cherries against rains, winds, weed, and hail.
Weed Matting Ground Cover
The weed mat ground cover goes by many names weed barrier cloth, weed control mesh, and weed control mesh, and so on.
It is made from woven PE with UV stabilized. It is suitable for your cherries and other fruit trees. It reduces weed growth and prevents erosion.
Other benefits include allowing the air through, moisture retention, blocking the sun, and maintaining temperature
The windbreak netting protects your cherries from being destroyed by winds. Besides, they can control erosion, blowing snow, enhance habitat diversity, control dust, and reduce evaporation.
The netting features selvages, durable and lockstitch technology, and a monofilament net. It is made of a woven ultramodern plant with high-quality CIBA UV stabilizers. It is also lightweight for ease of handling
A windbreak can also be used as a shade cloth, playground wind protection, or privacy screening.
Reflective Ground Covers
This reflects lights and ultraviolet lights. It makes cherry fruit color more uniform and sweeter.
The mat is a heavy-duty Woven Polyethylene (P.E.) sheet designed to enhance light reflection from beneath the fruiting zone.
Reflector Mat is perfect for fruits that rely on sun exposure for coloring.
Numerous types of hail netting are available among them Drape, Leno, Quad, and Hail protection. They prevent sudden temperature changes and wind gust that destroy crops.
It is made of a woven ultramodern plant with high-quality CIBA UV stabilizers. The hail net is made from strong durable lockstitch technology. It is also lightweight for ease of handling Material, Structure, and Size of the Rain Covers
The rain cover is made of the core material of virgin High-Density Polyethylene (HDPE). It is also laminated with low-density polyethylene (LDPE) on both sides to ensure 100% waterproof.
The net material is also UV stabilized. The UV stabilized netting helps you protect your garden from extreme sun rays while maintaining proper air circulation.
You also have a wide choice of colors from clear, transparent, and black.
The material is recyclable. It also holds in whatever weather.
The rain cover is made of a woven fabric. It is constructed with a strong monofilament that provides extra tensile strength. The weaving prevents unraveling when cut. The weaving conforms to shade percentage and mesh density. This structure results in your garden having maximum air circulation
Rain covers can be made into custom sizes with reinforced 4 layers of taped selvage and grommets/eyelets at intervals for easy anchoring.
How to Buy the Covers
When you go to buy covers, keep in mind the following
- Weight: Take a look at the weight. It is listed in grams per square meter. It is an indicator of durability. This is useful when selecting from different covers.
- Thickness: The thickness is shown in millimeters. It varies from 0.1 – 0.5 mm. The thicker covers have more strength.
- UV: you should note whether your cover is UV stabilized. If your cover is not UV resistant, it may degrade in a short time.
- Size: When you’re buying a cover, taken note of the size and area coverage for the application.
- Color: The covers come in a wide range of colors to suit your needs. Just go for your preferred color.
Better still; check whether your seller online, wholesaler or distributor fit the following bill
- The cover is made of eco-friendly material
- The company has a rich experience of making covers
- The cover is made from cutting edge technology and is high quality
- Innovation and research
- Service and responsibility
The covers go with accessories for their installation. EyouAgro provides accessories fasteners, connectors, and ties down ropes, clips, brackets, clamps, and droppers, and many more to fit all your needs.
The tie-downs are used to keep the cover placed on an item. This is to prevent your cover from draping off or being brown by the wind.
The clips provide points to attach your ropes, canopies, and covers. The clamps also hold the canopies and covers without damaging your rain cover.
The ground cover pegs keep your tarpaulin safely secured to the ground. You can use eyelet accessories because they reduce tearing. There are also products for repairing rain cover and adding extra eyelets. This will help to extend the life of your cover.
After acquiring the cover and accessories, you are now set for installation. The main considerations are the different strengths, weaknesses, and costs must all be considered.
The cherries can be grown under various types of protective covers,
- Tunnels that cover multiple rows
- Cable-and-pole tent-like structures that cover individual rows
- Retractable-roof greenhouse-like structures that cover entire orchards
Also, consider the 2 covering system whether you want
- A system to protect the cherries from rain during ripening- a single benefit to production.
- A system that also protects from frost and/or promotes earlier ripening and/or facilitates pick-your-own customers on rainy weekends – adds additional return on investment benefits.
Once you have the support structure, unfold the cover. Or if you are using last year one untangle. It will unfold easily.
Successful Cherry Growing countries That Use Cherry Netting
According to the World Atlas leading cherries, producing countries include Turkey, the USA, Iran, Italy, and Spain. Turkey leads the pool with the production of 481,000 metric tons. The US follows closely with a production of 385,000 metric tons.
The countries that use netting successfully are spread over Asia, the Pacific, Europe, and America. EyouAgro supply cover covers and netting to 55 countries across the world. All of the countries supplied have reported good returns.
Many companies manufacturing rain covers and nets provide a warranty for their products. For example, EyouAgro provides a warranty to customers for its rain covers. The rain covers and other nets have a 5-year warranty.
Growing cherries is a major undertaking. From tending seedlings, planting, protecting to harvesting.
You will agree with us that protecting your cherry from rain is critical to your successful production. It is one way to mitigate weather factors so that your work does not go to waste.
We are confident that if you follow our rain cover guide 2021, your fruits will continue to thrive and give you maximum returns from your investments.