For the week ending Jan. 12, 2013.
Small grains & field crops:
Dryland grains and winter forage crops continue to grow well. However, many farmers are currently undecided regarding further planting. Dried beans are being exported to the Caribbean. Grazing-off of alfalfa fields has virtually ended, as growers are preparing for herbicide applications.
Deciduous tree fruits, nuts & grapes:
Field activities in vineyards, and stone fruit and nut orchards continue as weather conditions permit. Almonds, pistachios, and walnuts are primarily being shipped domestically. However, the export market is gradually increasing, with pistachios being exported to South Africa, Thailand, Spain, France, Korea, and Israel. In-shell walnut exports to Korea are finished for the season. Local government and industry officials have met with the Koreans to review the past shipping the season. Kiwifruit continues to be exported to Mexico, as inventories are plentiful.
Citrus, avocados & olives:
Navel oranges, lemons, and grapefruit continue to be picked and packed for both domestic and export markets. Demand continues to be steady. Navel oranges continue to be exported to Australia, New Zealand, Japan, China, and Korea. Domestic and export prices for navel oranges have begun to stabilize. The navel orange harvest has increased this week, since drier weather has allowed harvester and equipment into the groves.
Vegetables, melons & berries:
Cooler weather has slowed the growth of winter vegetables. However, recent rains will prove to be beneficial. Vegetable crop field activities remain minimal at this time.
Livestock and poultry:
Cattle forage and rangeland continue to benefit from the recent rains. Cattle continue to be relocated to foothill and valley pastures. Feeder steer prices are $2.00 higher. Feeder steers that are 600-700 lbs. are going from $120-$154.00/cwt.
Bare root roses continue to be received at local nurseries in large quantities, as well as liners for propagation. Roses continue to be shipped to various nurseries across the United States. Wholesalers continue minimal shipments of various plants to many of the southern states.
– Prepared by Marilyn Kinoshita, Tulare County Agricultural Commissioner/Sealer.