Frequently Asked Questions
- When is cherry season?
Cherry season is very dependent on weather. Typically it can start anywhere from the middle to the end of July. We are always later than the East Shore, because we don’t get as much sun. In rare cases, we may even start the first week of August, but typically, for us, it is right around the last week of July.
- Are you organic? / Do you spray?
No, we are not an organic orchard. State law requires anyone with a cherry tree, in our area to spray them. Cherries are a commercial crop in the Flathead Valley and if trees are not properly cared for, they become infected with worms. These worms can spread via the fruit fly they become. One infected tree will infect other trees. The results are lots of wormy, unsalable cherries.
- What kind of cherries to you have?
Most of our cherries are Lambert. These are similar to the Bings, sold in stores. They are a sweet, dark cherry. Royal Annes, Bing, Hardy Giant (pollenizer), and Lapins (pollenizer). We have planted more Bing trees, as well as Rainiers.
- Do you offer any other fruits?
We do not have any other U-Pick fruit that we offer at this time. We do have apricots and depending on the size of the crop, they may be available for purchase. We also have apples. We do not sell these. These are “organic” – not certified, but we do not spray them. They are as they are. They may have had worms, bruising, etc. Normally we leave them for the deer, but we do have people that come and get them for cider and for applesauce. They make fantastic applesauce, pies and apple butter. If you are interested, let us know and we will put you on the call list for when they ripen.
- Can we swim/use the beach/have a picnic on the beach?
Yes, with restrictions. We ask that you pick up all your trash and take it with you and that you stay in the area we ask. It is also important that you understand you are “on your own”. There is no life-guard, public restroom/changing area, etc. But we do not have an issue with people going down and enjoying the water, during the picking season. But, please ask before heading down. Like most of Flathead Lake, there is Swimmer’s Itch in the area, so be sure to towel off promptly, if you enter the water.
- Can I bring my dog(s).
We would really prefer you didn’t. We have pets and we don’t want to have to worry about their safety, or the safety of your animals. We understand that if you are traveling, you may have a dog with you. We ask that you keep them on a leash. In the event of a warm day, we would prefer they go with you to your tree, and not stay in a hot car, but please keep them closely monitored and on their leash at all times.
- What forms of payment do you accept?
We accept primarily cash. But we will accept checks (local). We also accept WIC and Farm Direct Vouchers.
- Will you wholesale?
Yes! If you are getting a large quantity that you want to resell, talk to the head guy – Hugh. He will make you a deal. If you want to set up a roadside stand somewhere and make some extra money, using our fruit, go for it! As long as you are picking, we would be happy to make a deal with you.
- Will you pick for us? Do you have fruit already available?
If you can give us some notice, yes. Give us a call (406)844-3547 and tell us how much you want and when you need them, we will have them ready for you. In some cases, and with enough notice, we will even deliver. There is a higher price for cherries we pick.
- I don’t like ladders, can I pick from the ground?
Due to deer, we have very little ground picking. They prune all the lower limbs by eating everything they can reach. The best cherries will be up higher and unfortunately, they will need a ladder to be reached.
- Can I bring my own ladder?
No, I am sorry, we need to have you use our equipment. Our ladders are designed for orchard use and are stable. Household ladders are very unstable in our rocky soil and may cause you to have an accident.
- How long does the cherry season run?
Typically we run for about 10 days to 2 weeks. This is variable, depending on the year, the size of the crop and the weather we are having. It will also depend on yellow jackets, which can deplete our crop rapidly.
- How can I reach a live person to ask more questions?
You can send us an email, or call us at 406-844-3547 or 406-844-3863. Please leave a message if you don’t get someone, often times we are in the orchard and can’t get to the phone. We will return your phone call just as soon as we can.