For the week ending Dec.21, 2013.
Small Grains And
Other Field Crops:
Most cotton fields are being chopped and disked in an effort to comply with the Cotton Plowdown Regulations. Growers should remember that the deadline for having cotton fields in compliance is December 20, 2013. Favorable weather continues for both the harvest and bringing fields into compliance. Some fields continue to be cultivated and prepared for winter and spring planting.
Deciduous Tree Fruits, Nuts, and Grapes:
The shipping of stored table grapes continues at a slow pace. Grapes are being exported to El Salvador, China, Mexico, Guatemala, Costa Rica, and the Philippines. Pruning in vineyards continues. Nuts are being exported to Korea, the European Union, Kuwait, Israel, and Taiwan. Pruning and shredding in stone fruit and nut tree orchards has slowed due to the light rain received, but will pick up with drier weather. Persimmons are still being sold at roadside stands.
Citrus harvest has slowed due to the recent freezing weather. Some freeze damage is evident, but the extent has yet to be determined. Growers have been using wind-machines and overnight irrigation to prevent and limit freeze damage. Oranges are being sent to Hong Kong, Korea, Malaysia, Thailand, Japan, New Zealand, the Philippines, Vietnam, and Australia. Mandarins are being shipped domestic markets, with those harvested after the freeze being assessed for possible damage. Lemons are being exported to Japan and New Zealand.
Fields are being prepared and planted with winter vegetation is germinating in the lower elevation pastures due to last week’s rain. Sheep are grazing in alfalfa fields. More rain is needed.
Retail nurseries are stocking up for the Holidays with season plants. Bare-root roses are being packaged and shipped to eastern states.
– Prepared by Marilyn Kinoshita, Tulare County Agricultural Commissioner/Sealer.