Almonds Archives - West Coast Nut





Almonds



Almonds being loaded for transport

Tips for Almond Harvest

By Cecilia Parsons Associate Editor

Being prepared increases the likelihood of a successful almond harvest.   Pest Control The number one concern for growers approaching harvest should be controlling navel orangeworm (NOW) in their orchards. Mel Machado, director of grower relations for Blue Diamond Growers said timing of spray applications for this pest is critical to control and minimizing nut damage due to NOW. Timing hull split sprays should be at the top of every grower’s harvest preparation checklist, Machado said. “You don’t want to be too late with your hull split sprays, you want to make sure you get good coverage.” Timing and coverage can be challenges for growers. It helps to understand the life cycle of NOW to plan spray applications for when they will be most effective. Hulls split earlier at the tops of the tree canopy than those on the lower third of the canopy. Growers and farm managers are also...

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Distribution Uniformity:

By Dani Lightle, UC Cooperative Extension Orchard Systems Advisor, Glenn, Butte & Tehama Counties

What is Distribution Uniformity? Distribution Uniformity (DU) is a measure of how uniformly water is being applied across the orchard, or whether certain parts of the orchard are receiving more water than others. It is a measure of the irrigation system. DU is a different measure than irrigation efficiency, which is a measurement of how well the applied water matches the crop water requirements. Irrigation efficiency is a measurement of how well you—the irrigator—applies a correct amount of water at an appropriate frequency. However, it is impossible to have a high irrigation efficiency without also having high distribution uniformity (Figure 1). (more…)

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Blue Diamond Expansion

By Cecilia Parsons Associate Editor

New automated processing and packaging equipment will be the center of Blue Diamond Growers expansion in Turlock. A groundbreaking ceremony in February marked the beginning this grower-owned cooperative’s continuing efforts to value added product lies and delivery of innovative almond products. The new addition at the cooperative’s 200,000 square foot manufacturing plant will be the latest construction of the three-phased project that will eventually yield a total of nearly 500,000 square feet of building pace over the next nine years. This phase of the project is scheduled to be completed in Spring 2020 and will accommodate growth of the cooperative’s business. “We are pleased to build our partnership with the Turlock community by investing to expand our facilities and workforce,” said Mark Jansen, Blue Diamond President and CEO. “We are creating the healthiest almond products and delivering the benefits of almonds to the world. This project allows Blue Diamond to...

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Update on Sterile Insect Program for Control of Navel Orangeworm

By Houston Wilson, Asst. Coop. Extension Specialist, Kearney Ag. Center, Dept. Entomology, UC Riverside
and Chuck Burks, Research Entomologist, USDA-ARS, San Joaquin Valley Agricultural Sciences Center

Sterile insect technique (SIT) makes use of large numbers of sterile insects which are released into wild populations as part of an area-wide integrated pest management (IPM) control strategy. Insects are typically mass-reared in a controlled environment and then ionizing radiation (e.g. x-rays, gamma rays) is used to induce genetic mutations that lead to sterility. The basic idea is that introduction of sterilized individuals into the wild population will limit the successful reproduction of wild individuals and lead to an overall reduction or even eradication of the target pest population (Knipling 1955). Mating with sterile individuals can reduce populations by either directly blocking reproduction or through inherited sterility in which offspring are actually produced but are themselves sterile (North 1975). Releases can include both males and females, although some programs utilize just one sex, and this is typically due to specific biological or ecological requirements.   The concept of using...

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Economic Outlook for the 2019 Almond Pollination Season

By Brittney Goodrich, Assistant Professor, Department of Agricultural Economics and Rural Sociology, Auburn University

Happy New Year! With every new year comes the realization that almond orchards will be in full bloom before long. This article summarizes some considerations for this year’s almond bloom, as well as what to expect in terms of colony supplies and pollination fees in the years to come.   The United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) estimates that there were 1.1 million bearing almond acres in 2018. According to the USDA Cost of Pollination Survey, 1.5 million colonies were used in almond pollination in 2017, with an average 1.6 colonies/acre. This is down from the 2016 average of 1.7 colonies/acre. These values suggest that the number of colonies demanded for almond pollination in 2019 will be close to 2 million. For some context, this is nearly three-fourths of the total U.S. honey bee colony population on January 1, 2018.   The supply of colonies for California almond pollination relies...

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