Company Info

Central California - March 5, 2013

This report covers conditions and observations made Monday, March 4, 2013.

Taken in the Westley area of western Stanislaus County, this report’s photos for the central region present the peak bloom of the Nonpareil and Aldrich followed by the Monterey and Nonpareil and the brilliant bloom of a well synchronized Butte and Padre planting along the Delta-Mendota Canal.

Monday provided a break from the overcast skies that dominated the previous day, with bright, but hazy sunshine bathing the orchards all day long. Morning low temperatures were reported predominantly in the low 40’s, with coldest locations dropping to just below 40 degrees, while day time highs reached into the mid and upper 60’s. Calm conditions accompanied the bright sun and mild temperatures, providing good support for the bee’s efforts. Observers reported an audible hum of commotion in the orchards as the bees put in a full 8 to 9 hours of excellent activity.

The continuing warm temperatures provided another day of strong bud development in the central region, pushing many orchards throughout the northern San Joaquin Valley towards their peak bloom. The Nonpareil and the California type varieties have now moved just beyond their peak and have begun their evolution into the petal fall stage. The Monterey is approaching its peak bloom and is followed closely by the Carmel. The greatest degree of variation and what may have been the most impressive amount of color visible on Monday was found in the late blooming Butte and Padre. As may be seen in today’s third photo, many Butte and Padre orchards are fairly well synchronized this year, with advanced plantings almost ablaze with white flowers. However, other plantings may have as much as 40 points of difference between the two varieties, with the Butte leading the Padre. All should end well for these plantings, however, as the most delayed Padre also have a large proportion of buds moving into the popcorn stage, set to move into aggressively bloom.

Growers report that advanced plantings around the region are now taking on a green tinge as their leaves emerge and grow in size. This is most evident in California type varieties such as the Price and in some Sonora plantings. Some growers have expressed a degree of concern about the amount of green becoming visible, believing that those orchards “greening up” at a faster rate are doing so because of a poor crop potential.

Sprayers could be heard throughout the region applying preventative fungicides in advance of the rain forecast to arrive at mid-week. Irrigation continues to be a major activity. At least one local irrigation district, the Modesto Irrigation District has begun filling its canal system for grower deliveries. This will allow growers without private wells that depend on “surface water” to begin irrigating their orchards.

Conditions

High Temperature: 69°F
Low Temperature: 42°F
Wind: 0 to 5 mph.
Rain: None.
Sky Conditions: Clear.
Bee Activity: 8 to 9 Hours of excellent activity.
Current weather at the National Weather Service
    


Photos: Mel Machado, 3/5/13
Click an image to enlarge it

Bloom Status


Dormant
Green Tip
Pink Bud
Popcorn
Bloom
Petal Fall
Jacket
Out of Jacket
Sonora
0%
0%
0%
0%
69%
24%
7%
0%
Nonpareil
0%
0%
1%
6%
87%
6%
0%
0%
California
0%
0%
0%
4%
86%
8%
2%
0%
Carmel
0%
0%
3%
8%
87%
2%
0%
0%
Monterey
0%
0%
1%
8%
91%
0%
0%
0%
Butte
0%
0%
6%
17%
77%
0%
0%
0%
Padre
0%
0%
12%
22%
66%
0%
0%
0%
Data reflects a composite of the growing region