The following is the latest California Crop Weather report from the National Agricultural Statistics Service’s Sacramento, Calif., Field Office:
The start of the week included dry and mild weather across the northern half of California while Southern California had a few lingering showers, the residual effects of a low pressure system which had recently exited the state.
A low pressure system rapidly approached Northern California on Tuesday resulting in cool showery weather across the northern portion of the state while scattered light showers fell across the south.
The low pressure center moved into Central California by Wednesday. This kept showers across much of the state through Thursday when the low shifted into Southern California.
Dry conditions returned to California on Friday as the low pressure system shifted eastward out of the state. High pressure built over California resulting in dry and warm conditions during the weekend.
Intermittent showers hampered field preparation and the planting for rice, corn, and cotton crops.
The wet weather also delayed progress on the first cutting of alfalfa. Some fields have been cut and rained on while others were delayed and are yet to be cut. Broadleaf and grass control took place in alfalfa fields where conditions allowed.
Cool, overcast weather slowed the development of barley, safflower, oats, and wheat. Lodging occurred in some small grain fields.
The picking of tangerines, Navel oranges, Valencia oranges, and lemons continued normally as the grapefruit harvest ended. Packing sheds prepared for the upcoming cherry harvest. Herbicide applications were ongoing in prune orchards.
Fungicide applications continued in grape vineyards in the Central Valley while some vineyards were thinned to increase light exposure. Table grape vineyards were irrigated and showed good development. The early strawberry harvest continued normally in the San Joaquin Valley.
Due to ongoing cool and wet weather, almond orchards showed good development as growers continued fungicide applications. Recent weather significantly slowed insect development reducing the need for pesticides.
Walnut blight applications were ongoing as the walnut bloom continued. Irrigation continued in pistachio orchards while blooming increased.
Rain interfered with the head lettuce harvest that started in Monterey County. When fields were dry enough to cultivate, producers in Sutter County planted cucurbits. Field work, pre-plant herbicide treatments, and ground preparation continued.
Wet weather conditions hampered the asparagus crop in San Joaquin County. In Tulare County, tomatoes showed good growth and caps were removed. Peas, peppers, cucumbers, and onions progressed well and early squash began to bloom.
Asparagus was harvested in Merced County while fields of bell pepper, cantaloupe, honeydew, tomato, and watermelon were planted. In Kern County, carrots, lettuce, and organic vegetables were harvested.