This private, 173-Acre haven is located 25 minutes from the city of Chico, which has a population of 103,000 with 212,000 in the metropolitan area. Chico is home to California State University, Chico, and it offers a variety of cultural venues, dining options, and shopping.
Sycamore Ranch is located within a short drive of diverse natural attractions. The location offers the possibility of a weekend escape to the coast, skiing at Mt. Shasta or Lake Tahoe, dinner at a Michelin three-star restaurant in Napa, or professional and Pac-12 sporting events in Sacramento or San Francisco.
As you travel down the long, oak-lined driveway at the southern end of the property, you will discover a home that provides remarkable privacy and peaceful pastoral beauty.
The principal residence on the property incorporates floor-to-ceiling vistas of the valley's progression from the foothills to the Sierra Nevadas to snow-capped Mt. Lassen at the southern tip of the Cascades.
This expansive view and your own private stream with abundant wildlife will serve as a memorable backdrop for warm family reunions held in the spacious sunken great room.
Lovingly maintained fruit trees and large garden plots will bring plentiful and flavorful produce to your table throughout the year.
Owned solar panels entirely cover the monthly electrical bill for this home, and a whole-house back-up generator provides all electricity in the event of an emergency or an extended interruption of the electrical grid.
A half-mile stroll across the property brings you to an additional newly renovated and tastefully landscaped three-bedroom residence with large meandering sidewalks, aquatic plants, and the perfect amount of shade from the namesake sycamore trees, towering redwoods, and mature valley oak trees.
Not far from the second residence is a recently renovated manufactured home (caretaker's quarters) that sits near the Sycamore Ranch commercial structures.
Block 6, the largest walnut plot, showcases the scrupulous care and planning invested in the Sycamore Ranch orchards. Prior to planting, the Los Robles clay loam soil was ripped twice. Then potted trees, of Vlach clonal rootstock micro-propagated in the lab from a tree selected for its vigor, disease and nematode resistance, and other superior attributes, were budded to the Chandler walnut variety.
Unlike field-grown nursery stock, potted trees are not exposed to crown gall- causing bacteria in the nursery. Also, as potted trees they are not subject to the damage, caused by the extraction and handling of field-grown nursery trees, that encourages crown gall infection. Sycamore Ranch used its own team to plant these trees, taking ample time to perform a thorough and careful job to protect the tender roots. The soil moisture was controlled and the planting method was gentle and deliberate. As a result, 99.5% of these 2,200 trees never suffered from crown gall. The few trees that were compromised were surgically repaired and remain free from crown gall as well.
Sycamore Ranch has noted very few roots growing near the surface of the Block 6 trees. During the first two years after planting, the trees were watered using simple drip emitters placed inside the tree cover. Using this technique, the water went downward through the potting medium creating an onion-shaped wetted zone. This single point of irrigation gave the roots a clear downward path to follow, encouraging vertical root growth. Consequently, the trees enjoy good anchorage, good water accessibility at deep levels throughout the growing season, and protection from the occasional tillage operation.
Block 2, the flagship prune orchard, consists of nine acres of fourth-leaf French Prune trees budded to the innovative Krymsk 86 rootstock. Krymsk 86 is a peach-plum hybrid with superior anchorage and wet soil tolerance. These trees began life as clean, containerized, micro-propagated nursery stock. To prepare for the new planting, the soil was ripped twice and fumigated with Telone. This orchard has been entirely free from bacterial canker prevalent among young trees.
Young prune trees left to grow unattended, will typically have tight crotches with branches that grow into one another, forming bark inclusions. As the tree gets larger and heavier, these inclusions cause the limbs to be prone to breakage, sometimes leaving nothing but a stump. Sycamore Ranch personnel spent considerable time and effort training the trees to form crotches that are wide and strong, precluding this sort of failure.