About 2 acres of established, but neglected orchard, in search of someone to love it. Located in the “banana belt” on Joy Road, Occidental. The property is 10 acres total. Most of it is sloping, with crappy pasture and 50 year old widely spaced walnut and apple trees. About 3 acres including the orchard are deer fenced. There is some space (1/2 acre?) that was used for vegetable production within the fence. Our objective is to find someone interested in restoring the orchard, but long term it may be possible to use more of the land.
The property was developed many years ago as an organic market farm. The owner died and the property has been neglected for over 7 years. It breaks our heart to see it waste away, but we just don’t have the interest in doing anything with it. We use a small section of the property for goats, chickens and a hinny – as well as for personal garden and recreation. There are two homes associated with the property outside of the fenced area, both are currently occupied. This is a family property and we don’t utilize it completely, so are hoping to find someone that is interested in loving it as their own. Long term lease agreement available to protect your investment.
There are over 6 varieties of apples, two types of asian pears, santa rosa plum, a yellow plum, other small purple plums, plucots, 3 types of grapes and walnuts. Some of the trees are over 50 years old, others are around 15 years old. The owner planted thornless blackberries and some of those remain. The grounds are also overrun with thorned blackberry and rumor has it that it used to be a blackberry farm. We have cleared a lot of berries, but there is more work that needs to be done in order to have clear rows between the rows of trees. Trees have too dense of foilage, covered with lichen and when the fruit comes in the branches break from the weight.
We have located a restorative pruner that is interested in helping us bring the orchard back into shape. We intend to pay some to have him help this fall and if the new farmer would like it, he could also help train you. We also are willing to invest energy and some money to rent equipment to clear the brambles and deal with the extensive pruning waste that will be accumulated.
Current farming practices on property: Organic
Acres Available for Lease or Purchase: 3
Land is fenced: Yes
Landowner's preferred business arrangement: Lease;Other;Cropshare
Landowner is willing to advise or mentor the tenant farmer: Yes