Visalia, Calif., (March 23, 2018) – Tulare County Agricultural Commissioner released the current status today of Major crops in the most valued county in the California Ag portfolio. They report that Corn is being planted as weather allows. Winter wheat and oats are enjoying the latest rains, growth is excellent. Ground preparation is continuing for spring row crops. Alfalfa fields need more time and dry weather to fully develop before harvest begins. Overall this week’s rainfall was beneficial to field crops.
Vineyards continue to be pruned and tied. Stone fruit orchards are continuing to bloom and leaf out. Almond trees are blooming and leafing out. Bee colonies continue being moved into almond and stone fruit orchards to help with pollination. Orchards are being monitored for possible damage from the recent freeze to the bloom, but the extent (if any) is as yet unknown. Pomegranate and walnut orchards continue to be pruned. Pistachios are being exported to Germany, Hong Kong, Italy, and Spain. Almonds are being shipped to Barbados, Colombia, Germany, Hong Kong, Israel, Japan, Korea, the Netherlands, Taiwan, Trinidad & Tobago, and the United Kingdom.
Navel oranges, Mandarins, and lemons continue to be harvested, but at a slower rate. The harvest of late variety navel oranges continues, and fruit are showing some grading issues. The extent of freeze damage to citrus fruit is still being determined. Some pruning and skirting of orange groves is still occurring. Navel oranges are being exported to Australia, China, Hong Kong, Korea, Mexico, New Zealand, and Taiwan. Mandarins are being picked and shipped to Indonesia, Japan, Korea, and New Zealand. Seedless tangerine groves continue to be netted in preparation for the coming bloom. Lemons are being exported to Hong Kong, Japan, and Korea. Minneola tangelos continue to be shipped to Germany, Japan, and the Netherlands. Some citrus trees are being planted. Olive groves continue to be pruned.
Squash and cucumber seedlings continue to grow under hot-caps and hot-tunnels. Greenhouse vegetables continue to be harvested. Strawberry and plantings are progressing well and maturing. Blueberries should begin to bloom late in the week.
This week’s rain was beneficial, and should improve the rangeland forage condition, As always, more rain is needed. The fed cattle market dropped $3.00 to $127.00 per hundred weight this week.
Retail nurseries are stocked up on both perennial and annual plants for the spring season. Bare-root roses are being received and processed for reshipment to various U.S. states, Canada, France, Japan, and Korea. Some mature olive trees are being dug for landscape purposes.