Central California - February 15, 2013
This report covers the conditions and observation made during the week of February 10, 2013.
Our photos for today’s report shows the very early pink tip stage of the Sonora in the Manteca area of San Joaquin County, followed by the early green tip stage of the Nonpareil and a Butte/Livingston orchard under irrigation at sunrise, both in the Salida area of Stanislaus County.
Dry conditions prevailed over the central region during the week, with bright, hazy skies dominating the week’s weather. Morning low temperatures ranged from the upper 20’s to lower 30’s on each morning, with daytime highs rising from the upper 50’s to the upper 60’s as the week progressed.
The start of the 2013 bloom is just around the corner. A scattering of open flowers are now visible along the west side of the region in the most advanced Sonora plantings, with Nonpareil and the California type varieties starting their move into the green tip stage.
Growers are completing last-minute pre-bloom preparations. All have been mowing excessive weed growth in an effort to ward off damaging morning temperatures in the coming weeks. The combination of low moisture levels and cold morning temperatures has spiked growers’ interest in maintaining a clean orchard floor in the event that cold morning temperatures continue throughout the bloom. Some have also been completing down-the-row herbicide and soil amendment applications.
Growers are keenly aware of the low soil moisture levels within their orchards and irrigation activities have picked up notably with those growers who have water available from private wells.
Beekeepers continue their nocturnal labors, delivering hives to orchards throughout the central region.
Current weather at the National Weather Service
Photos: Mel Machado, 2/15/13
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