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SAINT JOHNS, Mich. (WLNS) - Walking through Phillip's Orchards, it's hard to believe the apple-filled trees stood bare this time last year. High temperatures followed by frost destroyed most of Michigan's harvest.
Co-president Brian Phillips calls it the worst crop in living memory. But this year, he tells a different tale. "I mean this crop, that we're going to have in the state of Michigan, is probably the biggest crop we've had in at least a decade," said Phillips.
Phillips says not having a crop last year actually helped this year's turn-out. He says a huge harvest takes a lot of energy from the tree. Last year, apple trees took a mandatory break, thanks to mother nature.
"So all the trees had extra stored up energy and were raring to go," said Phillips.
The Michigan Apple Committee Predicts apple trees to produce 30 million bushels of fruit this year. That's 10 million more bushels than average and 10 times the three million bushels of apples produced last year.
Phillip's Orchard alone expects to pick more than one million apples from its 30 acre fruit farm, which means they'll have plenty of produce to fill pecks, press cider and prepare caramel apples.
Phillips orchard is already selling certain varieties of apples. They say by mid-September, they'll have more types available as they're ready, along with fresh apple cider and other orchard favorites.