California Crop Weather report

The latest California Crop Weather report from the National Agricultural Statistics Service’s Sacramento, Calif., Field Office:


On May 3 a weak cold front brought light precipitation to the North Coast area and some mountain winds. Dry conditions dominated the entire state during the week.

A weak trough over the Pacific Northwest brought windy conditions to the northern part of California late Wednesday into Thursday. A late season storm arrived Sunday bringing cooler temperatures, valley rain showers, and isolated thunderstorms to northern California.

The system brought snow above 4,000 feet to the northern mountains, west slopes of the Sierra Nevada, and above 5,000 feet in the southern Sierra Nevada and Tulare County mountains late Sunday into Monday.

Field crops

Wheat, oat, and barley fields continued to mature. Some fields were harvested for silage while others were cut and baled. Weed control continued in small grain fields. Irrigation was started on wheat fields in areas which missed some spring showers.

Alfalfa growers advanced to the second cutting in the Central Valley. Cotton growth continued. Rice ground preparation included flooding and planting. Corn was planted.

Fruit crops

The picking of Valencia oranges in the San Joaquin Valley (SJV) continued normally as the lemon harvest neared conclusion. Lemons were picked at an increasing pace along the coast. The Navel orange and tangerine harvests slowed in the SJV. The citrus bloom neared its conclusion as widespread petal fall occurred in groves.

The cherry harvest began on early maturing varieties. Herbicide applications and tree thinning continued in apricot, prune, plum, peach, and nectarine orchards.

Fungicide and fertilizer applications along with irrigation and thinning continued in grape vineyards in the Central Valley. Sulfur applications were made in Central Coast vineyards.

Nut crops

Precautionary miticides and fungicides were applied in almond orchards as insect development was subdued. Walnut blight applications were ongoing as the walnut bloom neared completion, along with the pistachio and pecan blooms.

Vegetable crops

The asparagus harvest progressed in Merced County. Bell peppers, cantaloupe, honeydew, tomato, and watermelon fields continued were planted.

Tomatoes and peppers were planted in Tulare County along with sweet corn and squash. Growth in onions and garlic was encouraged by the warm weather.

In Colusa County, the planting of processing tomato transplants continued at full tilt. Onion planting in Siskiyou County was nearly complete, but acreage was dramatically reduced due to drought conditions. Sutter County’s field work, pre-plant herbicide treatments, and ground preparation continued.

Excellent conditions for vegetable growth were reported in Fresno County especially in garlic and onions. Tomatoes were cultivated and fertilized. Fungicides were applied through drip irrigation. Carrot cultivation finished. Herbicides were applied using sprinklers.

Asparagus, lettuce, cauliflower, carrots, and some organic greens were harvested in Kern County. In Imperial County, onions were harvested with excellent quality reported. The melon crop progressed well with low pest pressure while harvest began in early planted fields.

TAGS: Management
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