UMES hoping to restore the Eastern Shore’s fruit harvest

One university on the shore is taking matters into their own hands to restore the Eastern Shore's fruit harvest. 

University of Maryland Eastern Shore is working on a new project that has three acres of crops. They have 34 different kinds of apple, 24 variety of peaches and variety of nectarine, pears, plum each, and 10 variety of grapes.

This orchard is designed to provide healthy food and it's part of a contemporary program designed by Dr. Naveen Kumar. 

Dr. Kumar says, "In the current scenario there’s not much growth or not much cultivation of fruits in our areas. Then I started the historical data, what we used to grow in the county area and then I came to know that this place was the hub for fruit cultivation."

He says the program has made significant progress since it was launched this spring. But there is still a lot more work to do. 

"My idea is to just observe what are ingenious problems so I’m just trying to understand next year onward, we will adapt, spray regimen to protect our crop. So our main motive is to screen these large number of varieties, let us know our farmers, which is best for our area," Dr. Kumar tells 47 ABC.

Despite being planted in Princess Anne, this can actually benefit all the counties within 25 miles. 

We are told this is also a live learning experience for students.

Their target is to expand each year with new types of plants. 

Next year they are going to plant more pear trees and dwarf apple trees. 

They are adding two more acres of land, as well.

Currently, Dr. Kumar has another project going on studying nanotechnology to battle pests with soybeans. Long term, his findings could possibly help with disease and insect infestation of edible crops.

Categories: Local News, Maryland