For the week ending March 9, 2013.
Small Grains And Other Field Crops:
Crops like wheat, barley, and oats continue growing. Field preparation for different row crops such as cotton and corn has started. Planted field crops are being irrigated due to the lack of precipitation. Warmer conditions from previous days are encouraging good growth for grains.
Alfalfa fields are showing new growth in various areas. There are some exports of Black-eyed beans to Hong Kong, Australia, and Singapore.
Deciduous Tree Fruits, Nuts, And Grapes:
Walnut, almond, and stone fruit orchards are being pruned. Different varieties of peaches and nectarines are in bloom. Bees are being moved into orchards to help with the pollination.
Mechanical and chemical weed control is continuing in stone fruit orchards and grape vineyards.
Almonds, pistachios, and pecans are being exported to different countries such as Hong Kong, Korea, and Vietnam.
Citrus, Avocados, And Olives:
Navel oranges continue to be picked, packed, and shipped to domestic markets; and exported to countries like Australia, Chile, China, Dubai, Japan, Korea, New Zealand, Thailand, and Malaysia.
Also, lemons are being packed for the domestic market and exported to Australia, Japan, New Zealand, China, and Taiwan. Minneola tangelos and Murcott Mandarins are being exported to China, Australia, New Zealand, Japan, Colombia, and Netherlands. Some Valencia oranges have been harvested and exported to China. Freeze damage continues to be found in some citrus.
Vegetables, Melons, And Berries:
Warmer temperatures are helping some vegetables to grow. One example is strawberry plants that are progressing quite well. Italian squash has benefited from the warmer temperatures. Spinach is developing well. Some varieties of blueberries are starting to bloom.
Livestock And Poultry:
In some places the condition of winter forage on rangeland is good, in contrast other regions need more rain to increase the growth of grasses. This means ranchers have to give supplemental feed to livestock. All of this is causing high demand for the fed cattle market. Right now the price is steady at $120/cwt.
There is an increase in shipments of vines and bare-root roses to domestic markets. There are some bare-root exports to China and British Columbia.
-Prepared by Marilyn Kinoshita, Tulare County Agricultural Commissioner/Sealer.