Tulare County Crop Report for the week ending March 25

Small grains and other field crops: Winter wheat, oats, and barley continue to grow, numerous fields have been damaged due to excess rain. Fields are being prepared for corn and cotton. Alfalfa and triticale are growing in deep puddles from recent rains while other fields remain unplanted. The continuous rains are great for all the dry land farming. Winter grain and forage crops are being treated for pests. Dried beans are being exported to France, Guadeloupe, and Martinique. 

Deciduous tree fruits, nuts, and grapes: Later varieties of almond trees continue to bloom, while early varieties are leafing out. The rainy weather appears to have negatively affected almond pollination the most, followed by early variety plums. Early plum and peach orchards are in bloom. Later stone fruit varieties appear to not have been significantly affected if fungicide sprays were applied at proper times. Early variety grapevine buds are opening while later variety grapevines are still dormant. Pistachios continue to be processed and exported in large quantities to Mexico, Turkey, Switzerland, Vietnam, Saudi Arabia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, China, Israel, India, and Poland. Last season’s almonds are still being packed and shipped to Taiwan, Japan, Korea, Germany, Turkey, New Zealand, Colombia, the United Arab Emirates, Hong Kong, Vietnam, Mexico, India, Italy, Chile, Israel, Belgium, Malaysia, Korea, Norway, and Saudi Arabia. Walnuts are being exported to Jordan, Turkey, Israel, Italy, the United Kingdom, France, Norway, Spain, Vietnam, and China. Pecans are being exported to the Middle East, New Zealand, the United Kingdom, Italy, and Singapore. Grapevines have been prepped and are being maintained for the new season.

Citrus, avocados, and olives: Citrus harvest is still slow due to persistent rains. Significant amounts of puff continue to be present which decreases the amount of fruit suitable for export. Navel oranges are being packed for the domestic market, as well as being exported to the Philippines, Chile, Hong Kong, Malaysia, Vietnam, Taiwan, China, Thailand, Singapore, Korea, and Japan. Lemons are being picked and packed for domestic markets as well as New Zealand. Mandarins are being picked and packed for domestic market as well as Japan, Panama, Taiwan, and Puerto Rico. Citrus trees are being topped and skirted. Organic navels are being sent to domestic markets as well as Japan and Taiwan. Cara Cara navels are being picked and packed for domestic markets as well as Taiwan, Japan, Hong Kong, and Singapore. Minneola tangelos are being picked and packed for domestic market as well as Japan.

Vegetables, melons, herbs, and berries: Cabbage and broccoli are still growing for local roadside stands in addition to some lettuce, garlic, and onions during the cold and wet weather. Onion seed is being shipped to Brazil and South Africa. Strawberries continue to develop and benefit from the rainfall. Blackberries and blueberries are now blooming. Summer vegetable fields are being prepared.

Livestock and poultry: Cattle are thriving in the green hills as much-needed rain is still helping the feed. Moisture in the soil has stimulated growth and development of grasses in pastures and rangelands. Irrigated pastures have benefited from the recent rains and are in good to excellent condition. Continued cool, wet weather should help grazing conditions for cattle. Classes and weights are continuing to stay strong this week. The fed-cattle prices climbed to $165 /cwt. this week.

Tom’s additional comments: Bare root grapevines, fruit trees, and berries are arriving at nurseries, as well as seasonal vegetables. Bare root roses are currently being sent to domestic, Puerto Rico and Canadian markets. Cut flowers are being imported from Costa Rica, Ecuador, and Colombia to flower shops. Local wholesale citrus nurseries are shipping citrus trees, graft wood and seed to local, Hawaii and Arizona, and international nurseries and growers in Canada and Bahamas.

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