Tree Fruit Crops
Yakima County is the leading County in Washington State in the production of apples, sweet cherries, pears (including Bartlett pears). There are hundreds of acres of peaches, nectarines, plums/prunes, apricots, and other soft fruits.
There is sizable acreage of vegetable crops in Yakima County that feeds the truck market, local farmer markets and roadside vegetable stands. So don’t forget your vegetables! Yakima County is the leading producer of squash (summer and winter) and peppers (bell and chile) in Washington and has over 3,600 acres of sweet corn. From May to September, roadside vegetable stands are loaded with asparagus, onions, snap beans, cucumbers and tomatoes. Sometimes you may find crops like sweet potatoes, peanuts or okra where producers rely on greenhouse plantings to extend the growing season for crops normally found further South.
Fruit & Berry Crops
Yakima County has over 19,000 acres of grapes including juice grapes like Concord as well as wine and table grapes. The production of wine grapes has exploded in the past ten years as Washington State wines garner national and international recognition and a plethora of wine tasting rooms contribute to a robust tourist trade. Premier grape varieties like Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon, Cabernet Franc, Riesling and Chardonnay are grown here to feed a growing wine industry that has earned the Yakima Valley the designation as one of the American Viticultural areas found in Washington. The Yakima Valley has become the home to the State’s highest concentration of wineries. In addition, a number of berry crops including blueberries, raspberries, blackberries and currants find their way to niche markets, broaden the selection of fruits at numerous fruit stands in the area, and contribute to the growing fruit juice industry in the region. Yakima County is the number one producer of melon in the State including watermelon, cantaloupe and muskmelon.
There has been a modest increase in acreage devoted to nut crops as local producers diversify their crops and discover that there are some ideal climatic areas that can give rise to a quality walnut, chestnut and filberts right here in Yakima County.
Yakima County is the leading county in the nation in the production of hops. There are nearly 19,000 acres of hops planted and harvested annually. Hops are the essential ingredient in the world-renown brews of the Pacific Northwest.