Saturday, October 6
9:30AM Departure from Stockbridge Hall Circle
12:30PM Return to the John Olver Design Building
Our research and teaching orchard is situated on a parcel of land in the southern part of Belchertown. About 50 acres are planted with fruit crops, mostly apples. Join our staff for a brief tour of the orchard at its best time of year and participate in a tasting of numerous apple varieties, fresh cider blends, and hard ciders.
In 1961, the University was significantly expanding and decided that the University orchard on the east side of campus was an appropriate location for dormitories. Because of the potential loss of research and educational space, the Massachusetts Fruit Growers' Association appointed a committee to find a new site for a research and educational orchard. They found a nice 215-acre farm in Belchertown, bought it, and donated it to the University of Massachusetts in June 1962. Renovation of the buildings and planting of new apple trees began soon after, and the UMass Cold Spring Orchard Research & Education Center was born. A state-of-the art laboratory, classroom, and cold storage building was constructed in the early 1970s. This farm is one of the premier fruit research and educational facilities in the Northeast.