Jackass Mt. Ranch is a family farming operation, owned and operated by Dave and Ami MacHugh. Both Dave and Ami have deep roots in agriculture, being at least 3rd generation farmers on each side. Ami worked for Dave's parents' farm hoeing weeds and they got to know each other well. One day when it was raining and they could no longer dig carrots, they went to town and got married. Since then they have raised 4 sons, all having involvement with the farm.

The farm has grown many different crops including potatoes, beets, asparagus, alfalfa, wheat, corn and of course, cherries. We currently are growing about 600 acres of Alfalfa and about 400 acres of Cherries. We also raise and sell Andulusian (PRE) horses.

Cherries have become our primary focus, as we have found much of our acreage to be prime real estate for growing exceptional quality cherries. We have many unique methods and equipment to facilitate the growing, harvest, and packing of cherries.

One of the unique methods includes the use of two of our own helicopters that we use to spray and dry cherries. Helicopters hover over fields after rain events in the two weeks prior to harvest to prevent cherries from splitting and cracking. Cracking occurs when water sits on growing cherries and the cherry absorbs the water faster than the external skin can grow, resulting in splits. Our helicopters greatly reduce splitting.

We also employ the use of steam boilers to heat irrigation water. Cold spring frosts can freeze a cherry blossoms' pistol, disrupting pollination. During this critical time of year we irrigate on cold nights and heat the water to in excess of 100F. We have pioneered this technology in cherries, which has almost eliminated our use of smudge pots which are not evironmentally freindly. We expect in the next one to two years to have completely eliminated use of smudge pots.

We have manufactured most of our own harvest equipment to facilitate quick gentle handling of fruit. We have our own portable hydrocooler, which we use to cool cherries within one hour of being picked. Every hour of field heat in a cherry equates to a day of shelf life for our customers, we are very mindfull of this.

We also pack 50% of our fruit in our own state of the art packing facility. This has allowed us to control our cherries from field level directly to the retailer, or exporter. We think our facility has given us a step up over the competition. When you call to talk to us about cherries, you are talking directly to the farmer.