A beautiful rainbow over the orchard!
our story

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2017                                     mm
Chapter 1
Welcome to our story! You may find it interesting - I know we did! And a lot of hard work in the sun and rain and cold but in the end very worthwhile.  So lets start somewhere near the beginning shall we. First there was talk about planting a few Sea Buckthorne trees for their great medicinal berries. Very hard to pick - big thorns (it's in the name) very tart and almost unknown. During our research we stumbled upon the U of S research into Haskap berries, Dr Bob and the great U of S crew, and so the adventure began. Soon there were haskap days to be attended in Saskatoon, propagators in Henribourg to be met and a thousand details to be arranged. The fact that it happened at all is a little miracle as you will see!
2017 - A very big year!!

The farm - a few paintball fields, a few U-pic Saskatoon bushes, some U-pic raspberries
and the usual bin yard with a garden along the grid.  But not for long..... look east....

Navigate to the year you prefer here!

In the beginning (Apr 25th) - when it was planned to expand
the U-pick by adding 100 Honey Bee & Borealis over by the U-pick Saskatoons - and then it all changed and expanded
and the idea just GREW!!


Initial doodling on a Google Earth view of my home quarter

using my canola swathes for calculations using the
 topography of the land for planning purposes!


Lifting 2 year old Honey Bees to transplant
from Haskap Central Sales!

Watch the video

Curtis from Haskap Central Sales holding a prime example of
air layering - when a branch lays down near the ground and roots sending up new shoots.  Makes tremendous root structure
to support a bigger plant!

Lifting 2 year old Honey Bee at Haskap Central Sales -
look at the roots on that beauty!  I had to get all of those
 tucked down into the trenches when it was  transplanted!

Conditions SO WET when we went to dig Honey Bee that we could only park at edge of grid and handle bushes several times to transfer them from digging to trailer via the tractor bucket.  Slow process!

trailer full

After a busy day of lifting and packing into the trailer the 2 yr old
Honey Bee & 1 yr old Indigo Gem from Haskap Central Sales --then
we found the real work was about to begin!! This happened May 13th -
1 month and a day after the initial idea that started with Sea Buckthorn!!

Very first row tilled!!  Look how straight it is! 
We used the gps rows
of seeding to help us with
our staking!  See the stakes at the top of
the hill
for more rows?

Caught Murray in passing - rototilling is a high
speed activity :)

Preparing the first row for transplanting the 2 yr old Honey Bee we bought from Haskap Central Sales.  I didn't have the bar set quite right yet on the v-ditcher so Ashton had to remove some of the extra lumps to make room for those huge roots!

Enjoy a short video of the planting action!

First 4 in Row 1 planted with Bear guarding
 against a wayward mouse!

Phase 1 overview - first plants in - tractor cuts in
more rows in the background.


Caught Murray in action making
those rows nice and straight!


Trenching for big plants with the venerable 150!

honey bee
It's a start as we can see now how far we've come.
Working on row 1 of 3 rows of 2 year old Honey Bee.


Long hours trying to get the transplanting done!

Logan helping for a couple of hours after work!

One of the plants that have "LAYERED" or when a branch lays down, roots and subsequently sends up more shoots! Makes for a big plant that you can plant lengthwise in the row but lots of roots to deal with.


Huge example of a 1 year old Indigo Gem to be transplanted.


Transplanting 1 year old Indigo Gem from Haskap
Central Sales in trench made by Versatile 150.

More planting from quad trailer.

plants in
Another load from Curtis!

When a branch lays down and roots itself and sends up multiple shoots you have a much bigger plant than original as noted with this transplanted 2 year old Honey Bee!


A beautiful specimen!  And my dog Bear part of the action.

Check out the video laying drip tape!
12 Seconds long.

Overview of Phase 1 - getting a lot done!
Watch the video.


Testing the drip tape for coverage.
As much as it looks like Murray is just relaxing and posing he is actually holding down the end roll of the starter plastic mulch - we just give him the look good  jobs:)))

As traumatic as it should have been to be ripped out, moved and transplanted - these hardy Haskaps are struggling valiantly to bloom on May 21st - just 8 days after planting!!

Martin planting Aurora for me during
seeding -  May 23, 2017

Martin planting video!

Raeanne with the drip tape in place - not all rows were  plastic mulched.

One heck of a pile of work to tear apart round bales with a pitchfork to straw mulch 4 rows of 1 year old transplanted Indigos. Wouldn't recommend it unless you are looking for an exercise program!

First planted row of Honey Bee is done!!

Partial row 17 of 2 year old transplanted Honey Bee before drip tape and bark mulch!

Dr Bob
June 9th I caught up to Dr. Bob out in their orchard for a few tidbits of info while I was there loading up the van with leftover baby plants  at the conclusion of the U of S plant sale. !

You'll laugh when you see I don't like to waste a trip or an opportunity! A steep learning curve and Dr Bob certainly is a fount of information readily shared!

Yes the van was very full of little babies!

Murray holding our bare-rooted Sea Buckthorn that were the cause that got us into this mess in the first place - LOL!!  It was his request of "Did I have a little land to spare to plant a few trees for health purposes?" that started us researching on April 12th that branched off into haskaps and getting a few of them (first 100) April 25th while in Calgary to add to my Saskatoon & Raspberry & Chokecherry u-pic orchards.  Within a couple weeks that idea had expanded to the story you see unfolding!!  What an adventure it has been:)))


Had help a couple of the days spreading bark mulch on Honey Bee transplanted rows and also on the U-pic Saskatoons.  Think ended up being 6 tandem truck loads used!
Helps to have the big toys when doing jobs like transporting ?6 tandem loads of bark mulch used between the Honey Bee rows and the U-pic Saskatoon orchard.

An aerial view looking across the field from top of granary.

Another angle - looks good so far.


Dedication or stupidity?  We're not sure but we were still trying to finish up planting the van load of U of S babies at midnight the night before going to the lake for a couple days!  By flashlight and quad lights we got the job done and with my trusty guard dog Bear never far from the action:)

Know we are desperate to finish when out by the quad lights we are getting these last U of S babies into the ground!   Sure made it hard to read the tags though:)

We planted 2 nights in a row til midnight but may be easier to see as this one taken at 9:38 pm while still light!

Baby Auroras that just 8 weeks before were a dormant little stick that Martin planted for us!  Amazing don't you think?

In case you need to navigate out here's your chance! Our story button takes you to the top of the page! More to come below!
whats new

6 Auroras in hand and more to ripen - pretty amazing for a tiny one year old plant - gave us real hope for the future!  Plus they were delicious!   Darn near made me cry when after 3 days of rain went out to harvest them and not a berry left in sight--neither ripe or green--they were all gone!  Our first experience with birds:((((

Gave us an idea what size the Auroras might be!  Think these were the only ones we got before the birds helped themselves!

dr bob
During the July 2017 Haskap Days at the Univ of Sask. we listened to Dr. Bob Bors - the selective breeding guru responsible for the most recent additions of awesome varieties during 17 years of his work with them - as well as moving along our very steep learning curve on all things Haskap!!

One example of U of S's netting during some of Dr. Bob's studies - trying to save the berries from the birds.  The bad part of making them taste so good!

We got our first live view of the Joanna harvester in operation - we weren't as impressed as hoped but found out later there were a couple attachments either missing or not set properly so wasn't a fair trial.  Sure a lot better than picking acres by hand though:)

Following the U of S presentations Haskap Central Sales asked us to join in the enjoyment of some gourmet cooking using Haskaps and the menu created by a master chef.  It was both tasty and colorful not to mention the healthy properties!

Course 1

Course 3

Course 4

Course 5

In addition to all the new orchard happenings there was still the U-pic Raspberry patch to deal with - beautiful as they are - as well as an acre of U-pic Saskatoons too! 
Not a lot of sleep in my days!

July 7th and Aurora are thriving!

Some beautiful U-pick raspberries!!

The Saskatoon berries at Renouf Farms U-Pick were also thriving!

Overview Phase 1 from granary after baling done!

Video with geese in field!  (22 secs)

Did I mention that we also have Chokecherries for U-pick or order as well? Excellent for making Jelly, Syrup or Wine!  Did I mention that I'm not bored:))

Sometimes when you spend long days outside you see very interesting things - like this Mushroom cloud over Melfort!

Full harvest moon over new phase 2 rows being made!

Curtis from Haskap Central Sales ready to lift some 6 year old Indigo Gem he needs to move using his big digger.

Curtis saying hurry up with the picture cause he can't haul these by himself.  These 6 yr old Indigo Gem are huge!  We worked VERY hard that day!

Video of Gator pulling 6 year old Indigo Gems! 20 Secs

An example of the HUGE root structure of a single 6 year old Indigo Gem - and Curtis's digger only goes ?4 feet wide - so who knows how much we cut off or broke off pulling what remains out of the loosened soil??  All I know is I had a heck of a battle transplanting these in the biggest trench my v-ditcher could make at home in Phase 2! But they all survived!

Getting more efficient at packing - LOL - as even with 2 layers and pushing as hard as we could my 16ft stock trailer only held about 32 - 6 yr old Indigo Gems!

First plants going into Phase 2 expansion - the 6 yr old Indigo Gems dug at Haskap Central Sales - many of them we attempted to split or divide because Curtis's use of them for propagation was a different growth style than we'd want for berry production!  Another HUGE job getting those root structures down into my biggest v-ditch trench!

Have to say this was a LOT of backbreaking labour!  First couple years of berries helped make it worthwhile!

Row 3 Indigos - we are showing some progress!

Burning late night oil again trying to finish the job but at least got some help from Logan during last few hours!

A single Indigo fills quad trailer - late enough now can't remember if I still split it up or just planted the whole thing!!

Looking back over our row of 6 yr old Indigo Gems now that all finally in the ground - an amazing feat actually with tons of backbreaking labour! - and my yard in the background.

With all these extra acres of grass and dandelions to cut thought it was imperative to get a bigger mower into action so next year will see this one hooked onto the Kubota all summer, as well as a new fabric shed to help store extra stuff we seem to be acquiring!

An example of what the root structure does when planted too deep - creates a second root collar I guess and and another set of roots as they like to be near the surface.  Thought it was interesting!

The big 6 yr old Indigo asleep in the snow - maybe we can rest now too!!!

And now 2018 awaits us!

How to find us!


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Renouf Farms, Melfort, Saskatchewan.
We also have a Paintball business
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Tags to find us by: Haskap, Honeyberries, polyphenols, healthy, antioxidants, haskap wine, haskap jam, haskap sorbet, haskap mead, haskap puree, dried haskap, renouf farms, renouf orchard, you pick, u-pic, raspberry, Saskatoon berries, saskatoon you-pick, haskap varieties, haskap beauty, haskap beast, haskap aurora, haskap blizzard, haskap honey bee, haskap borealis, renouf haskap, fresh berries, frozen berries, haskap indigo gem, haskap syrup, sea buckthorn, sea buckthorn berries, coming soon berries,

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