Organic farmer - Hochhuebhof
"Organic is complex and therefore extremely exciting."
The term "Hueb" dates to times long past and traditionally denoted the second largest farm in a certain part of the village. Our Hochhueb farm is situated at 625 m above sea level. For some years now it has been managed according to the guidelines of organic farming. During my professional experience with the South Tyrolean Fruit Quality Control I had the best possible opportunities to become acquainted with this method of cultivation and learn about its advantages. In addition, several further discussions with many neighboring organic farmers helped me to take the step towards this sustainable form of agriculture with confidence.
While my father Markus, besides apples, also pursues his passion for Williams pears and cherries, I concentrate 100% on my apple varieties Golden Delicious, Royal Gala and Bonita. From the latter, I have been able to purchase around 3,000 trees and I am convinced that this scab-resistant variety will also give me great pleasure in the future.
My father was originally a bit reserved when it came to organic, but he too encouraged me to continue the path I have chosen. To achieve a great harvest result with limited possibilities of intervention in plant protection is a challenge that suits me. Of course, a lot can happen in the months leading up to the harvest that you don't want to happen. For example, the apple can get a "sunburn", which manifests itself in the form of black spots and can easily occur if you use sulphur, the natural antidote to scab fungus, at the wrong moment in midsummer. In the sun-drenched Val Venosta Valley, especially exposed fruits can sometimes "burn" themselves severely and this is less attractive from a visual point of view. To protect a certain part of the harvest particularly well, about a third of my trees grow under the hail net. This is precisely where the frequency of hail is statistically particularly high. At the same time, the hail net reduces the strong sunlight a little and the risk of sunburn is reduced.
Apple trees need fresh water regularly. My orchards receive it from the rustic alpine pasture region above the Tablà hill on the Monte Tramontana. There is hardly any better water.
As a full-time farmer I am constantly educating myself further, after all, I want to improve myself constantly. I find new breeding experiments very interesting, such as trees that regulate their heat balance when higher temperatures occur by rolling up their foliage and thus offering less surface for the sun to attack. Agriculture is exciting and organic farming is probably the most exciting.
Where I live
The bittersweet lady
Beauty meets acidity: This bright and smooth crossover between Topaz & Cripps Pink makes the pests stay away, therefore, it is especially popular in organic farming.
January - May
opaque radiant red colour on creamy background, homogeneous shape, very smooth shell
juicy and crunchy bite
aromatic with pronounced acidity
The elegant precocity
The tasty gala appears every summer in its reddish yellow shell and the new apple season begins.
September - March
smooth shell, spherical shape, slightly conical, pale yellow base colour with bright red and striped cover
crispy and juicy with firm pulp
refreshing, sweet with little acidity
The classic delicious
Golden Delicious is our main variety and, therefore, the queen of Val Venosta apples. That the most popular apple has a real quality, can be seen in its lovely red cheek. By the way, this is typical of fruits on a hillside.