Northern California - August 6, 2012
This report covers conditions and observations made between Monday, July 2 and Sunday, August 5, 2012.
The next report is scheduled for Monday, September 3, 2012. However, in the event of any significant occurrences prior to that date, this site will be updated as soon as possible.
This report’s photos for the northern region present the first of the northern region’s Nonpareil shaken near the Sutter Buttes, followed by the hull split of the Nonpareil and the mature nuts of the Butte variety, both in the Chico area of Butte County.
Warm, summer-time conditions dominated much of the weather during the period in the Sacramento Valley. Morning low temperatures in all areas of the region were reported predominately in the 50’s with warmest mornings remaining in the 60’s to lower 70’s during a brief heat wave in the period’s fourth week. Daily maximums exhibited greater variability, ranging predominately from the mid 80’s to just over 100 degrees. Coolest temperatures were observed at mid-month, with readings dipping into the mid 70’s in the wake of a flow of monsoonal moisture that moved into the Sacramento Valley from the south. Observers reported a few scattered showers generated by the flow of moisture in the southern areas of the region, which quickly evaporated.
Growers spent much of July in preparation for the upcoming harvest. Weed control, irrigation and insect management activities dominated the grower’s attention during the period as they worked to support the maturing crop and prepare the orchards for an efficient harvest.
The warm conditions experienced during the period have helped to push the 2011 crop on to the harvest. Observers are reporting that the hulls of the Nonpareil variety are splitting well and that the crop is well on its way towards a more normal harvest timing than has been experienced in the past two years. Observers are also reporting hull split in the pollenizer varieties, which by all appearances may be ready to shake shortly after the Nonpareil harvest has been completed. Sonora and Price, in particular are progressing well and many plantings will be ready to shake by the end of August.
Pest Control Advisors are reporting that the timing of the Navel Orange Worm life cycles is indicating that a “flight” of adult moths should emerge during mid-August. This has placed growers in the position of deciding whether to attempt a treatment to control the populations within their orchards and shake their Nonpareil at the proper timing or try to shake their trees as soon as possible in an attempt to put the crop on the ground before the adult moths can lay their eggs on the maturing nuts. At the same time, some have reported that mite populations within the orchards are approaching economic levels requiring treatment.
At this time, growers are making the final irrigation to many Nonpareil plantings and will begin the harvest as soon as the trees have dried enough to eliminate the possibility of damage during shaking. All the while, huller/sheller operators are putting the finishing touches on their facilities in preparation for the crop’s arrival.
Current weather at the National Weather Service
Photos: Dennis Meinberg and Ryan Christy, 8/6/12
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