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Almonds



LFB in Control for Almonds and Pistachios


When you see adult leaffooted bugs (LFB) in your almond or pistachio orchards, it is time to take action. There is no established threshold for economic damage caused by this piercing-sucking pest, said Kris Tollerup, UC Cooperative Extension area Integrated Pest Management advisor. Traps and lures for LFB are still being evaluated. Visual observation of LFB in an orchard should prompt treatment, advisors said. LFB This large insect pest is a native of California, and has been found in the San Joaquin Valley from Butte to Kern counties. While LFB may be found in most valley locations, there are specific environmental conditions that allow for populations to build. Those conditions include riparian areas, protected overwintering sites and host plants. Almond and pistachio orchards adjacent to those sites can become infested and are vulnerable to crop loss or damage from LFB. Tollerup said he has seen a 50 percent almond crop...

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How Much Pruning is Necessary in Mature Almonds?


After the final windrows of the season are swept and picked up, many almond growers consider whether they should prune their bearing almond trees. The answer depends on what the goals might be. Limbs that are broken, diseased, are in the way of cultural practices or present safety concerns should be periodically removed. If the goal is to increase or prolong yield of the orchard, the answer is probably no. Past and current University of California (UC) trials suggest that growers are not getting a return on their pruning investment if their goal is to improve yield. In fact, the numbers suggest the opposite: the more growers prune, the more they may reduce their yields and profits, even in the long term. [caption id="attachment_3233" align="aligncenter" width="1024"] Untrained vs. mechanically topped.[/caption] One of the first long-term trials to look at minimal pruning of...

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Kester, a Productive Late Bloom Almond Variety from University of California Davis


The variety Kester was developed as a pollenizer for Nonpareil that combines good kernel quality and productivity with a later flowering time for reducing vulnerability to flower diseases and frost damage. Kester’s high productivity and later flowering time also make it a promising alternative to the variety Padre in Padre/Butte plantings. Kernels are similar to Nonpareil in shape and size, though the seedcoat tends to be darker and slightly rougher. The seed parent of Kester was Tardy-Nonpareil, a bud-sport mutation of Nonpareil that retains Nonpareil’s good kernel qualities and disease resistance but flowers 10 days after Nonpareil. The Kester tree is vigorous and upright to spreading, being similar to slightly smaller than Nonpareil in final tree size. Production occurs on a combination of spurs and terminal shoots. This growth habit supports high productivity with an open tree architecture that allows greater light penetration and air circulation to the canopy interior,...

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Irrigation by Variety in Almond Orchards


    As farmers face increasing pressure to use water wisely due to environmental and policy changes in California, the importance of developing site-specific irrigation practices has never been more important. Site Specific Irrigation Site-specific irrigation management can account for heterogeneous soils, variable topography, diverse tree varieties and ages, changing environmental conditions, and more. In almond orchards, which typically have two or three varieties to improve cross-pollination, diverse tree varieties offer a potential application of site-specific irrigation management. My major advisor, Dr. Isaya Kisekka, and I have begun an experiment to investigate the potential of irrigation by variety as a form of site-specific irrigation. Could farmers improve quality, yield and/or crop per drop by independently irrigating tree varieties? The motivation to study irrigation by variety comes from the growth patterns of almond trees. Different almond varieties experience critical growth stages, such...

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Almond ready to be processed

Another Record Breaking Almond Crop Predicted for 2019


The United States Department of Agriculture (USDA)/National Agricultural Statistics Service (NASS) releases two almond reports every year. The first is the subject report based on opinions from randomly selected California almond growers throughout the state by a phone survey conducted in April and May. NASS’s objective report provides a more precise estimate on yield based on actual almond counts and measurements gathered from over 850 orchards statewide that includes the weight, size and grade of the average almond sample broken down by growing district and variety. The 2019 subjective report was released in May, and for the second year in a row it is predicting a record breaking almond crop. According to the NASS, California almond orchards are expected to produce 2.50 billion pounds of nuts this year, an increase of 8.69 percent over the 2018 2.30 billion-pound crop. NASS’s objective report will be released on July 3, 2019.  ...

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