Farm Press Staff

Farm Press
USDA: Yuma County primary natural disaster area

On May 4, the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) designated Yuma County, Ariz. as a primary natural disaster area, due to damages and losses caused by drought.

“Our hearts go out to those Arizona farmers and ranchers affected by recent natural disasters,” said Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack.

Farmers and ranchers in Arizona’s Maricopa and Pima counties also qualify for natural disaster assistance since the counties are contiguous with Yuma.

Walnut research trials planted at Lindcove REC

A new walnut block featuring two research trials has been planted at the Lindcove Research and Extension Center (LREC) at Exeter, Calif., according to Elizabeth Fichtner, local University of California Cooperative Extension farm advisor, Tulare County.

On April 11, 2016, Fichtner established a rootstock observation trial and a study to screen biological and biorational compounds to help protect walnut rootstocks from soilborne pathogens. 

California olive oil production is increasing
California olive oils lauded in state competition
California olive oils praised in state competition
Urban California reduces water use by 96 percent/goal 1

A hearty applause for California urban dwellers who almost met Gov. Edmund Brown Jr.’s 25 percent water conservation mandate for the nine months since mandatory urban conservation began.

The California Department of Water Resources (DWR) reports that statewide cumulative water savings from June 2015 to February 2016 were 23.9 percent, compared to the same months in 2013.

Salinas Valley Groundwater Basin
DWR issues $7M in groundwater sustainability grants
California issues $7 million in groundwater sustainability grants
Lettuce research seeks to ID genes that regulate water, nitrogen needs
Growing lettuce with less nitrogen, water?
Cal Poly Pomona researcher receives state grant to study nitrogen and water needs of lettuce with hopes of reducing requirement for both
NASS Certified Organic Survey is underway

The 2015 Certified Organic Survey (COS) is underway and the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s National Agricultural Statistics Service (NASS) is reminding California farmers and ranchers that it’s not too late to respond.

In early February, survey questionnaires were mailed nationwide to all known organic farms. In late March, NASS will conduct telephone follow up with producers who have not yet responded.

Some farmers may also be selected for in-person interviews to assist with data collection efforts.

The survey is voluntary.

Jeffrey Mitchell, University of California
Nominations sought for conservation tillage award
Nominations sought for Conservation Agriculture Systems Innovation Center award
Witte named dean of Fresno State's Jordan College
Sandra Witte receives permanent appointment as dean of Fresno State's Jordan School of Agriculture Sciences and Technology
Farmers applied fewer pesticides in 2014, says state agency
DPR report: pesticide use falls 3 percent in California 1
Pesticide use falls 3 percent in California, according to state agency that regulates chemical uses
Shasta Lake
DWR honored with national climate leadership award
DWR honored with national climate leadership award
Food safety research
Western Growers donates $1m for food safety research
Western Growers donates $1 million for continued food safety research
Almond Board of California leadership class
Program grooms new almond industry leaders
Program grooms new leaders for California almond industry
California's severe drought
Campaign seeks public help over water wasting 1
Western Growers targets government decisions to waste storm flows through media campaign
California’s wettest months deliver below average snowpack 2

The statewide snowpack – source of much of the California’s water supply – is only 83 percent of the March 1 average, the result of moderate precipitation since last October and relatively warm temperatures, according to the Department of Water Resources (DWR).

“Mother Nature is not living up to predictions by some that a ‘Godzilla’ El Niño would produce much more precipitation than usual this winter,” says DWR Director Mark Cowin. “We need conservation as much as ever.”

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