Parma Fruit Field Day Set for Sept. 20

Monday, September 12 2011

Written by Bill Loftus

PARMA, Idaho - Tables laden with fruit fresh from the orchards and vineyards of the University of Idaho’s Parma Research and Extension Center’s pomology orchard and vineyard will welcome visitors to Annual Fruit Field Day Tuesday, Sept. 20.
The annual field day organized by College of Agricultural and Life Sciences researchers will begin with registration at 8:30 a.m. at the orchard. The program will begin promptly at 9 a.m. and continue until about 1 p.m.
The fruit field day is free and open to the public and typically draws hundreds of visitors. Lunch will be available for purchase. Two pesticide credits will be available to those who attend the entire field day.
In a change from past years, the 2011 tour will be held at the center’s pomology orchard and vineyard site about 4 miles north of Parma. Several cultivars of new table grapes, peaches, nectarines, apples, quince, Asian pears, and other alternative fruits will be presented during the tour. Participants can taste many of these fruits.
The popular annual event is geared to those interested in fruit production, including commercial growers, small farm growers, alternative fruit growers, home gardeners, master gardeners, horticultural professionals and graduate students; staff, horticultural hobbyists and fruit industry representatives.
The program will feature an overview of fruit research and production, several fruit-industry commercial booths and the opportunity to taste several types and cultivars of fruits.
Other highlights and tours will include:

  • The center’s comprehensive research projects on Fuji apple irrigation, fruit nutrition, chemical thinning and pesticides uses
  • The modern super-high-density apple orchard with different canopy architectures and rootstocks
  • Mechanization for spraying, harvest, thinning, stress evaluation and tree/vine training to reduce labor
  • The stone fruit selection research orchard
  • Alternative fruit crops, including quince, Asian pears, persimmons, Jujube, Haskaps and others
  • National apple rootstock selection research
  • Peach and pluot research
  • Table grape vineyards, new grape canopy research.
Tours will include discussions of various cultural practices of fruit crops, including planting, growth regulators, pruning, thinning, girdling, irrigation, pest and disease control, safety in chemical application.
More information is available from the center at (208) 722-6701, ext. 228, or from Essie Fallahi at (208) 722-6701, ext. 225, or by email to

The pomology orchard is located at 31727 Parma Road, Parma, ID 83660.
Driving Directions to the site are:

  • From Ontario: Take I-84 East about 4 miles Take Exit 3 toward Payette/Parma. Turn right onto U.S. Highway 95 toward Parma and continue for 9.7 miles Turn left onto Pearl Road continue 1 miles Turn right on Parma Road approx. 0.2 mi to orchards/vineyards on right.
  • From Boise/Caldwell: Take I-84 West. Take U.S. Highway 20/26 Exit 26 toward Notus/Parma. Turn left onto Hwy 20/26 and continue for 18 miles Turn right onto Pearl Rd and go 1 miles Turn right on Parma Rd and go approx.0.2 miles Orchards and vineyards will be on the right.
  • From Parma R&E Center: North on U of I Lane 0.4 miles Turn right onto Klahr and continue for 0.4 miles Turn left onto Parma Road and continue for 1.8 miles Orchard/vineyards will be on the left.