How to plant Valencian Oranges
The planting of Valencian oranges has varied over time and the introduction of machinery has had a great impact on the design. Right now, the most common and advisable are usually "street" plantations (explained a little further on) and with a plateau (the small mountain on which the tree is planted) to favor light and drainage.
However, there is an increasing tendency to plant oranges in valencia in higher densities of orange trees, staggered type (see drawing), mainly to allow higher harvest volumes earlier and thus recover the investment earlier.
Investments in planting are quite high. It is necessary to analyze the soil and rule out diseases and fungi from previous crops, prepare the soil, plant and prepare irrigation, care, etc. Planning usually takes 1 to 2 years of preparation until planting.
There are 2 problems we have when planting:
- The first one is to choose the right variety of orange to plant (it takes 5 years to start having production and if nobody wants your variety, the disaster is huge). If you don't get it right, you have to change the variety, usually by grafting a new one and it is a fortune.
- The second is the theft of oranges in Valencia (it seems unbelievable but the impunity in Spain is absolute, I will write about this but you can steal all the trees, called seedlings and possibly never catch the culprit and you have thrown away all the money).
We are preparing an orchard in which we are going to make organic Valencian oranges but we are deciding on the variety and what we do to avoid theft. It seems absurd but the latter is practically what worries us the most. At the moment, we have started working the land. We had orange trees before, no diseases so we are calm in that respect.
This is the picture of how our field is looking at the beginning of the preparation. We have already uprooted the old trees but we still have to finish preparing everything and, especially, the irrigation.
Returning to the subject, the main planting frames (schemes) are:
Royal frame: This is the most traditional. Basically, every 4 plants make a square of equal side.
Street: It is the most used until 10 years ago. The shape of the seedlings makes a rectangle.
Triplet: Currently there is a tendency to use this type of planting and the five of gold, depending on the variety cultivated. Here the trees form an equilateral triangle.
Five of golds: Another of the most used. Here they form an isosceles triangle.
To finish, next I leave you a photograph from a small height where you will be able to see another orchard of ours. The million dollar question: What kind of frame did we use?