Weather

Weather at the start of the week (Sept. 20) was influenced by two low pressure troughs which moved across the northern section of California Monday through early Wednesday.  The troughs were relatively dry but cool, keeping temperatures below normal for much of the state for the last days of summer.

High pressure began to rebuild over Southern California Wednesday, starting a warming trend which ushered in the beginning of autumn. The high pressure strengthened through the weekend bringing 100 degree weather to Southern California. The north warmed to above normal levels as well, though not as warm as those reported across the south.

No significant precipitation was reported in California during the week.

Field crops

Rice harvest started in early-planted fields in the San Joaquin Valley (SJV). Alfalfa was cut and baled with the last cutting taking place in some fields. Corn for silage was harvested. The sudangrass harvest was completed. Harvested silage fields were prepared for fall planting.

Wheat, barley, and oats were planted for winter forage. The rye and sunflower harvests continued.

Cotton progressed with bolls opening and fields prepped for defoliation. Dry bean harvest moved forward with beans cut and windrowed to dry. Potato fields were prepared for harvest. Field preparation for fall crops progressed with tillage and spray applications.

Fruit crops

The apple, pear, and fig harvests were ongoing in the Central Valley.

Valencia oranges were picked in the Central Valley and along the southern coast. The lemon harvest along the southern coast was essentially complete while light picking continued in the desert region.

The SJV table and juice grape harvests were ongoing while the raisin and wine grape harvests neared completion. Labor shortages slowed down the raisin grape harvest, though warmer weather created ideal drying conditions for raisin grapes.

Olive orchards showed strong development. Orchards where harvest was completed were

irrigated.

Nut crops

The shaking and harvesting of almonds in the Central Valley continued.

The harvesting of early walnut varieties began in the Central Valley as final orchard preparations were made for later varieties. The pistachio harvest picked up as preparations for the full-scale harvest were made.

Irrigation and pest control were ongoing in pecan orchards.

Vegetable crops

Imperial County reported ground preparation for winter vegetables. Kern County reported some the removal of some pepper acreage due to the presence of the melon fruit fly. Tulare County reported honeydew melons picked and packed with excellent quality and sugar content.

In Fresno County, the cantaloupe and processing tomato harvests were winding down while onion and garlic harvests were on the rise. Merced County reported bell pepper, honeydew, and watermelon harvests.

Stanislaus County reported tomato and melon harvesting. Mild weather affected some cantaloupe production causing the melons to have lower sugar content and slower development.

San Joaquin County farmers harvested watermelons, squash, tomatoes, melons, and pumpkins.  Sutter County reported field work and ground preparation, and the continued harvest of processing tomatoes, beans, and honeydew melons. Colusa County reported good yields in processing tomatoes.