Connecting Cranberries To FFA

Cranberries are blossoming right now and so is Tyler Gardner, Pittsville FFA member, who was at the 92nd Wisconsin FFA State Convention being recognized as the 2020 Proficiency Winner in the area of Food Production.

Gardner says, “Right now we’re actually in blossom so we have bee hives to pollinate our cranberries.” Gardner’s bogs do this to ensure the flower is pollinated and ready to go for harvest season in fall! Currently, the crop is looking to be average or above.

The weather has been crazy with late spring frost, but it did not affect their crop because of using irrigation. Gardner’s bogs have not been affected with drought like conditions, but they will see the impact of Wisconsin’s weather this year during harvest. Gardner says, “What’s interesting is the colder weather gives us our color of the fruit.”

Gardner’s favorite part working with his family on the cranberry operation he says, “I love harvest becomes everyone comes together.” Although it’s chaotic, he says it’s satisfying to know the work that him and other people are doing makes an impact with the consumer enjoying it.

Gardner was thankful to be at the 92nd Wisconsin FFA State Convention to be recognized and tie his work with cranberries to the National FFA Organization. Gardner is attending the University of Wisconsin-River Falls majoring in Agricultural Business in hopes of taking over the family business one day.