Small grains and other field crops: Summer row crop season is in full swing, with crops such as corn being very prevalent county wide. Corn silage continues to mature, chopped, and taken to dairies. Corn fields are thriving and growing rapidly. Alfalfa is being cut, raked, and baled. High temperatures this week have caused a great need for increased irrigation. Dried beans are being shipped to national retailers and exported to the French Territory of Martinique. Cotton is continuing to develop.
Deciduous tree fruits, nuts, and grapes: Almond harvest continues with various stages of the harvest process ongoing throughout the county. Last season’s almonds are still being packed and shipped for export to India, Thailand, China, Japan, Colombia, Panama, Israel, and Belgium. Stone fruit is still going strong and being exported to Mexico, Canada, Guatemala, Ecuador, China, Australia, Costa Rica, Indonesia, New Zealand, the Philippines, Taiwan, and Thailand. Nectarines were shipped to China, Canada, Mexico, Dominican Republic, the Philippines, Colombia, and Chile. Stone fruit orchard surveys are nearing completion. Domestic demand for stone fruit remains high. Last season’s pistachio crop is being processed and exported to China, Turkey, Australia, the Netherlands, and India to make room for the incoming 2023 crop. Pecans are being exported to the Middle East, New Zealand, the United Kingdom, Italy, and Singapore. Apples are continuing to develop. Table grapes harvest continues as growers attempt to assess the damage that last week’s rain may have caused. Exported grapes were shipped to Taiwan, Korea, Thailand, Japan, Indonesia, the Philippines, and Australia. Persimmons are in various stages of development throughout the county. Plum harvest and packing season is still going strong with domestic and export pack for the Dominican Republic and British Colombia. Plum varieties that are being harvested and packed include John W’s, Black Kats, and Owen T’s. It is unknown if any damage occurred to both pistachio and almond crop during the last rain.
Citrus, avocados, and olives: Some orange trees are being topped and skirted. Some mature olive trees are being dug for ornamental use. Olive trees are being trimmed. Valencia oranges are now being picked and packed for the domestic market as well as Japan, Taiwan, Mexico, China, Hong Kong, and Malaysia.
Vegetables, melons, herbs, and berries: Summer crops are winding down. Roadside stands remain busy selling locally grown produce such as melons, tomatoes, squash, and sweet corn. Certified Producers are starting to offer summer vegetables such as tomatoes, onions, squash, cucumbers, and peppers for sale at local farmers’ markets. Some older blueberry fields have been removed and will be replanted with newer varieties. Watermelons, honeydew melons, and cantaloupes have been harvested and sold at local fruit stands.
Livestock and poultry: Cows are slowing down in the production of milk due to hot weather. Irrigated pastures are in good condition. Nonirrigated pastures and rangeland conditions are in fair condition that will become poorer as the triple-digit heat will increase the dry conditions. Higher feed and fuel prices are affecting market prices. Cattle are being grazed on the higher elevation range. Dairymen are doing their best to maintain cool conditions for their cows in the continued heat. The fed-cattle price continues at $180/cwt this week.
Tom’s additional comments: Shipments at local nurseries have dramatically slowed due to the hot weather lately. Some summer vegetables and ornamentals are still moving at nurseries. Nursery stock continues to move in to and out of Tulare County from other parts of the United States and Canada. Cut flowers continue to be imported from Costa Rica, Ecuador, and Colombia to flower shops in Tulare County.