Summerland orchardist finds joy in the fruits of his labours

Lutz family has been part of Summerland’s agricultural tradition

When Derek Lutz gave up his teaching career in Alberta to operate an orchard in Summerland, it was a natural fit.

The six-hectare orchard, in the Canyon View area, is the farm where he grew up.

“It wasn’t a hard transition to come back to it at all,” he said.

His parents began farming in Summerland 40 years ago, but he began working the orchard eight years ago, in 2012.

However, he and his brother had been involved with Okanagan fruit before he returned to the farm.

While he was in Alberta, he and his brother worked at farmers markets, selling fruit from the orchard.

Today, they continue to sell to Alberta. Derek Lutz grows the fruit while his brother, brother in law and others are in charge of selling it.

READ ALSO: Okanagan orchard left rigid after worst season in 11 years

READ ALSO: Barclay once owned Trout Creek Ranch in Summerland

Lutz also operates Granny’s Fruit Stand in Summerland.

And during the winter, he is also able to work as a substitute teacher when needed.

The orchard grows a variety of tree fruits including cherries, peaches, apricots, plums, apples and pears, as well as table grapes and wine grapes, tomatoes and melons.

“You get to see the fruits of your labours,” he said. “There’s pride and accomplishment in that.”

Over the years, the orchard has gone through changes, as some varieties have been changed or replanted over the years.

Last year, he planted peaches and for next year, he plans to plant early variety cherries.

Over the years, he has seen changes in various fruit varieties, as well as some fad fruits, such as pluots, which are a cross between a plum and an apricot.

In addition, agriculture in Summerland and the rest of the Okanagan Valley has been changing as new varieties are grown and as the wine industry continues to expand.

While Lutz is growing some wine grapes on his property, he said he does not plan to move away from tree fruit farming.

The work is demanding and at times unpredictable.

For instance, this year, he and others hired helicopters to blow the water from cherry trees following late spring rains.

“There’s always something different every year in farming,” he said. “It’s a challenge, but it’s never boring.”

To report a typo, email:
news@summerlandreview.com
.



news@summerlandreview.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Vernon prays for women of Zimbabwe

World Day of Prayer celebrated in 2,000 Canadian communities, one of 170 countries

Local vocal talents sought for Okanagan stage

Okangan Singer-Songwriter Competition auditions underway

City Hall facelift moves services in Vernon

Cash station closed as renovations make way for new cemetery inquiries office

Japanese auxiliary celebrates 25 years of giving to Vernon hospital

Vernon Japanese Women’s Auxiliary has donated more than $10,000 to the hospital foundation to date

Project on track to fix pooling water issue plaguing Vernon

Final phase of construction on 48th Avenue

Mitchell’s Musings: Karma is king

One good turn leads to another and another…

Developer of RV resort west of Revelstoke ordered to stop selling lots

The Superintendent of Real Estate has serious concerns that buyers may not receive their purchase

Police dog located accused murderer in dumpster near West Kelowna crime scene

Tejwant Danjou’s application to have his impromptu guilty plea removed was accepted by the court

Police dog located accused murderer in dumpster near West Kelowna crime scene

Tejwant Danjou’s application to have his impromptu guilty plea removed was accepted by the court

Two law enforcement trucks ‘deliberately’ set on fire in northern B.C., RCMP say

Police say they have video evidence of a person in the area of the truck fires

Trans Canada east of Revelstoke to be closed overnight

The highway will reopen at 10 a.m. Feb. 29

Leap Year means we get an extra day in February, so how are you spending it?

People online have a number of suggestions and plans on how they will be spending Saturday

Greta sticker that drew outrage in Alberta not child pornography: RCMP

X-Site Energy Services has denied having anything to do with the stickers

Most Read