-- Customer Story
Grapes are virtually everywhere in California—in the mountains, the valleys, the cities, the boondocks, even along the Interstate highways. And while there are wine varietals, table grapes packed fresh in the field and fruit that will eventually be dried for raisins, they all have one thing in common: Even as vines age, they don’t stop producing if they’re cared for properly.
With table grapes, the age of the vine “is not about flavor” as it is with wine, says Navi Pooni, but “grapevines will last forever.” The youngest vines on the family’s farm, just outside of Fresno, are 40 years old, with the oldest being around 80.
One secret to their longevity is good ol’ fashioned TLC. Another, says Pooni, is his use of tractors nimble enough to fit through the rows of his grapes, as well as his almond orchards.
When Pooni says his is a Massey Ferguson® family, he’s not kidding. “My father and grandfather were farmers back in India,” he says. “Whatever they farmed, the first few tractors they bought were Massey Fergusons.”
These days, Navi uses an MF4610LP, the low-profile model designed for work on the family’s 100 acres. “They’re so versatile,” says Navi. “We do anything from tilling, spraying, pulling trailers, all that stuff.” Versatility is also important for Navi’s custom vineyard equipment, such as a hydraulic vineyard cane cutter that attaches to the front frame of the MF4610. “A lot of the stuff we make, we can’t just go down to the store and buy it,” he says.
“The price point was great, the horsepower was there, and the biggest thing for me is I have a 4-wheel-drive tractor with the turn radius of a 2-wheel drive,” Navi says. With 8- to 12-foot spacings in the vineyards and the vines planted right up to the roadway, “the tighter you can turn, the easier it is to line up and go to your next row,” he adds.
“Everyone asks me, ‘How do you like them?’ My first response is: ‘I’ve had these 4610s for two years and never had an issue.’”
See the full story, as well a video interview and walkaround of Pooni’s MF4610LP tractor, at https://www.myfarmlife.com/features/stover-makeover/.