California spring onion crop down 2 percent

California’s 2007 spring onion production is estimated at 3.21 million cwt., down 2 percent from the previous year, according to USDA/NASS.

The yield calculates to 440 cwt. per acre, up 6 percent from last year.

Planting of spring onions in California began in most areas by early November under good conditions. Above normal temperatures stimulated crop development in some areas.

Freezing temperatures in late January adversely affected yields in some areas. Wet weather later in the spring also affected yields. There were some reports of mildew problems and reductions in harvested acreage.

The U.S. end-of-season spring onion production estimate, at 10.9 million cwt., is down 2 percent from last year. Area harvested, at 31,300 acres, is down 10 percent from a year ago, while the yield, at 348 cwt. per acre, is up 26 cwt. per acre from 2006. The value of the spring crop is estimated at $376 million, 89 percent more than last year. In Texas, planting and harvesting of the spring onion crop was delayed due to excessive soil moisture.

In Georgia, rainfall during the winter months was normal to slightly below normal, while rainfall during spring was well below normal. Temperatures were above normal during both winter and spring. The crop was rated in good to excellent condition throughout the growing season. Harvest got underway about a week earlier than normal. Yields are reported to be the second highest on record. Despite heat and labor shortages, growers were actively irrigating the spring onion crop.

Arizona's spring onion crop was on schedule with favorable weather during the growing season.

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