SMALL GRAINS AND OTHER FIELD CROPS: Wheat and alfalfa crops continue to mature well. Silage crops are being cut. Forage crops will soon be ready to be cut for hay or silage. Cover crops planted between rows in orchards are being incorporated into the soil. Corn and cotton continue to be planted. Calf starter pellets continue to be shipped to Qatar.
DECIDUOUS TREE FRUITS, NUTS, AND GRAPES: Almond, cherry, and early plum fruit are sizing well. Immature stone fruit continues to develop and be thinned. Stone fruit harvest should begin in approximately seven weeks. Grapevines continue to leaf-out, while some vineyards are now having leaves thinned to allow better airflow and light to future bunches. Almonds are being exported to Korea, Japan, Malaysia, Belgium, Chile, Russia, Mexico, Indonesia, Taiwan, Argentina, Israel, El Salvador, Colombia, and the United Arab Emirates. Pistachios are being exported to Mexico, Spain, Belgium, Germany, the United Kingdom, Hong Kong, the Dominican Republic, and Israel.
CITRUS, AVOCADOS, AND OLIVES: Citrus bloom has been declared in all of Tulare County. Citrus exports have seen some decline due to the quality and reduced fruit demand. Late Lane navel oranges are being exported to China, Colombia, Ecuador, Guatemala, Japan, Korea, Singapore, Taiwan, and Thailand. Valencia oranges are being packed for the domestic market; and exported to China, Taiwan, and Singapore. Mandarins are being packed for the domestic market; and exported to the United Kingdom, Indonesia, El Salvador, Mexico, Colombia, Fiji, and Japan. Lemons continue to be harvested and exported to Japan, Korea, Mexico, Indonesia, and New Zealand. Minneola tangelos and grapefruit are being sent to Japan, Korea, and Cambodia. Olives continue to bloom.
VEGETABLES, MELONS, AND BERRIES: The preparation of fields for spring vegetable planting has increased due to the warmer temperatures and appropriate soil moisture. Strawberries growers are picking spring berries and offering them to the public for sale at local road stands around Tulare County. Blueberries continue to be harvested and exported to Taiwan.
LIVESTOCK AND POULTRY: Rangeland forage is in fair condition. Mild spring weather is benefiting milk production for local dairymen. Grazing conditions continue to be good for local cattle ranchers. The fed cattle market is at a steady $125.00 per hundred weight.
ADDITIONAL COMMENTS: Due to warm spring weather wholesale nurseries are increasing shipments to local and out-of-state retail nursery outlets. Bare-root roses continue to be processed and exported to Texas.
Prepared by: Tom Tucker Tulare County Agricultural Commissioner/Sealer