For the week ending
July 5, 2014.
Small Grains And
Other Field Crops:
Alfalfa is in all stages of growth and harvest. Higher yields have been observed in the early cuttings.
Cotton is showing good growth, with fields squaring and starting to bloom. Cotton, corn, and Black-eyed beans continue to be irrigated and cultivated for weeds.
Silage corn continues to mature and some fields are being chopped. Corn is still being planted as a second crop after wheat. Wheat straw continues to be baled.
Deciduous Tree Fruits,
Nuts, And Grapes:
Table grape harvest has begun, with Red Flame and Summer Royal varieties. Red Flames are being exported to New Zealand. The harvesting of apricots, peaches, nectarines, and plums continues, with many mid-season varieties.
Stone fruit is being exported to Canada, Mexico, Brazil, Panama, Malaysia, Nicaragua, China, Taiwan, New Zealand, and Australia. Fruit quality and size are excellent. 2013 season almonds and pistachios continue to be exported to Hong Kong, Israel, India, Chile, and the European Union.
Late navel orange harvest is almost complete. Valencia orange harvest continues, with exports to Japan, Korea, Malaysia, Singapore, and Hong Kong. Citrus re-greening is becoming more common due to the hot temperatures.
As a result packing houses are devoting more manpower to sorting and treating the fruit. Ruby Red grapefruit are being harvested for the domestic market. Olive bloom is finished and fruit is sizing normally. The crop has been reported to be light.
Sweet corn harvest is continuing, with roadside stands open around the county. Yellow and Zucchini squashes, cucumbers, Bell peppers, and eggplant are being harvested. Certified producers are picking tomatoes, cucumbers, squash, and peppers for sale at the local Farmer’s Markets. Strawberry harvest is nearing completion. Only a few roadside stands remain open. Blueberry harvest is slowing down. Blackberries are being harvested.
Livestock And Poultry:
Rangeland pastures are in poor condition at the lower elevations. Feed costs for cattle producers remain high. Due to the lack of quality feed, supplemental feeding is essential for range cattle. The fed-cattle market price was up $2 to $150/cwt.
New irrigation wells are being drilled or existing ones lowered due to declining water tables.
Warm temperatures are increasing the need for irrigation throughout the county. Grower inspections continue for Certified Farmer’s Markets. Citrus nursery stock continues to be sent to commercial growers for planting. Some trees are being top-worked.
-Prepared by Marilyn Kinoshita, Tulare County Agricultural Commissioner/Sealer