Posted: Thursday, June 23, 2011 10:00 AM
Growers who lost commercial fruit trees, nursery and Christmas trees, vines and bushes from winter freezes may be eligible for federal aid through the Tree Assistance Program of the Farm Service Agency.
Producers must have lost more than 15 percent of an orchard after normal mortality and must have had a policy or insurance plan under the Federal Crop Insurance Act.
Growers can get payments of up to 70 percent of replanting costs for up to 500 acres.
So far there have been 43 applications from growers and nurseries for assistance in Eastern Washington this year, said Patrick Lewis, FSA spokesman in Spokane.
The applications total 464 acres with the majority being apple and others being cherries, grapes, pears, nectarines, peaches and plums, he said, noting more may come in.
Visit www.fsa.usda.gov/tap or contact your local FSA office for more information.
-- Dan Wheat