Planting alfalfa using a newly installed drip irrigation system requires extra care to establish a root system which will grow to at least a foot down into the drip zone before the sprinklers are pulled.
This initial foundational support to enhance crop development will help ensure a hardier alfalfa field in quality, quantity, and stand life....More
Alfalfa is a $1.2 to $1.4 billion industry in California, but it faces competition from other crops, declines in the application of integrated pest management practices, and a need for improved research to help drive innovation and profitability.
A significant boost to the industry appears to be in the offing: a new voluntary nationwide alfalfa check-off program that would provide funds to support public research into alfalfa and alfalfa forage systems....More
Topping the county’s list of most valuable crops, grapes and almonds remained No. 1 and No. 2 with gross receipts near or above $1.5 billion each. Citrus rounds out the top three at over $927 million in gross value.
As the county’s top commodity, total grape acreage remained unchanged from the previous year at 106,200. Internal changes in the grape industry saw acreage gains in wine varieties and a decrease in raisin acreage....More
Talk about a win-win-win situation. Dead fronds from palm trees are problem materials when it comes to disposal. Although organic in nature, they are hard to grind up and can take 50 years to biodegrade in a landfill.
Jim Parks, chief executive officer of Palm Silage Inc. at Thermal, Calif., decided that if lemonade can be made from lemons then making food from palm fronds also makes sense....More
After hitting an all-time high of over $8 billion in 2014, the annual crop value in the county in 2015 fell more than $1.1 billion to $6.98 billion.
Most counties don’t have crop values as high as the losses realized by Tulare County....More
The overall reduction in California cotton acreage in recent years can be viewed from a cause and effect perspective.
California’s water struggles bear more than a modicum of the cause for acreage loss. The impact has been shuttered gins, large layoffs, and career changes for many gin managers and seasonal laborers.
The last year when more than a million acres of Upland cotton was planted in California was 1997. In perspective, there were 59 cotton gins in California in 2000. Last year, about half – 29 - remained....More
There’s a thief hiding out in some central Arizona alfalfa fields killing healthy plants and leaving frustrated growers with slimmer wallets. In some cases, an entire crop cutting is stolen.
The unexpected thief is two types of cutworm: granulate cutworm (Feltia subterranean), formerly known as Agrotis subterranean; and variegated cutworm (Peridroma saucia). ...More
The 2016 California Alfalfa and Forage Symposium will be held in Reno, Nev. from Nov. 29 – Dec. 1 at the Peppermill Resort. The theme of this year’s event is “Aiming Towards Profitability.”
With much of the agricultural industry today reeling from lower commodity prices, the symposium aims to offer pathways to profitability in alfalfa and forage crops for those who attend....More
I’ve come to learn that agriculture is more about people –food is our common bond.
Watching and listening to the interactions between California farmers and their counterparts from various cotton-growing regions in the country is interesting....More
Fresno State plant science professor Anil Shrestha was honored by the American Society of Agronomy with its Fellow Award.
Shrestha teaches classes at Fresno State in plant health, plant science, biometrics, weed science, pest management and crop productivity. His primary research is in integrated vegetation management in agricultural and non-agricultural systems....More
The California-based Western Growers Association recently revamped its “Produce Price Index” (PPI) website to allow consumers to easily identify the price difference between what customers pay at grocery stores for fresh produce and what farmers actually receive for their products....More
In what’s being called a “first-of-its-kind” move, the Environmental Protection Agency cancelled registration of an insecticide that was previously approved for use and ultimately labeled in 49 states.
The active ingredient Flubendiamide, marketed in the United States by Bayer as Belt, is a Group 28 insecticide labeled for use in about 200 different crops, including almonds, pistachios, walnuts, stone fruit, and cotton, numerous vegetable crops, alfalfa, melons, and sorghum, to name just a few....More
The Almond Board of California (ABC) held its 18th annual Food Quality and Safety Symposium in Modesto recently with a keen focus on providing almond industry members with information and resources to help them comply with upcoming rules in the Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA).
For handlers with more than 500 employees and subject to the Preventive Controls rule, the compliance period begins this September, while other operations have up to three years before compliance is mandatory....More
Idaho agriculture is perhaps best known for its ‘spud-ilicious’ potatoes yet the Gem State’s almost $8 billion farming industry is a diverse combination of about 185 commodities ranging from livestock to barley, alfalfa, trout, dry edible beans, and wheat.
In mid-June, a dozen U.S. cotton and rice farmers toured farms and processing facilities in southeastern Idaho as part of the National Cotton Council of America’s (NCC) 10th annual Multi-Commodity Exchange Program (MCEP), sponsored by John Deere....More
The University of California (UC) Agricultural Issues Center (AIC) has compiled the costs and returns of establishing an orchardgrass stand and producing the hay crop in the Intermountain Region of the Golden State, including Shasta, Lassen, and Siskiyou counties....More
The Stockton Group, a leader in innovative botanical based crop protection, has signed a major agreement with Syngenta as the exclusive global distributor of new biofungicide technology based on tea tree oil for the control of several diseases in ornamental crops.
Stockton products will be sold globally under the Syngenta brand for botrytis and powdery mildew in ornamentals.
Syngenta will market the new biofungicide technology in Europe, Latin America, Asia, North America, and Africa....More
Mark Christopher Watte, a proud and dedicated California farmer, plus state and national farm leader who stood tall for the industry on drought and other issues, passed away June 17, 2016 after a bout with cancer.
Watte operated his family farm called George Watte & Sons (George was Mark’s father). Mark grew cotton, alfalfa, triticale and corn for silage, black-eyed peas, pistachios, plus operated a 1,000 Jersey-cow dairy at Tulare....More