Nutrition Archives - West Coast Nut

Nutrition



Nutrition

What Walnut Growers Need to Know About Nutrition

By Cecilia Parsons, Associate Editor

Because of looming state regulations meant to protect ground water sources from nitrate contamination, California growers are being asked to re-examine how the amount of nitrogen (N) they apply compares with the amount they remove from their fields. Walnut growers are no exception. In order to use this nutrient more efficiently, growers and orchard managers may need to recalculate their application rates. Cost of over application is also a concern for growers. Ongoing research by University of California (UC) and University of California Cooperative Extension (UCCE) farm advisors, funded by the California Department of Food and Agriculture (CDFA) and the California Walnut Research Board, aims to more closely quantify the timing and scale of nutrient needs on typical soils to produce high yields. California walnut producers need to apply the nitrogen portion of their nutrients efficiently to reduce nitrate leaching below the root zone, and make sure their trees receive...

Read More

The Ins and Outs of Pistachio Nutrition

The Ins and Outs of Pistachio Nutrients

By Cecilia Parsons, Associate Editor

Think of the nutrients in orchard soil as a ‘bank balance.” Tree roots access the ‘money’ in the soil, using water and oxygen as their passbook.   In a presentation at the 2017 Pistachio Short Course, University of California (UC) Davis plant scientist Patrick Brown explained the basics of plant nutrition including how nutrients are acquired by plants and the when and where of tree nutrition—basic principles necessary to crop production.   Nutrition 101   Nutrients are taken up in water only by active roots on trees with leaves. While the size of the nutrient pool is the bank balance, withdrawals from the bank are limited by the solubility of the nutrients in the pool. Soil pH, minerals, lime, cation exchange capacity  (CEC) and organic matter determine solubility and soils must allow for root penetration plus provide adequate water and oxygen for root growth.   The pH range of 6.5...

Read More

Key Points to Ethephon Use in Walnuts

Key Points to Ethephon Use in Walnuts

By Cecilia Parsons, Associate Editor

Use of the plant growth regulator ethephon can be an important management tool for walnut growers who want to maximize kernel quality and minimize navel orangeworm (NOW) damage.   California walnut growers are also using ethephon to better manage their harvest timing said Dani Lightle, University of California Cooperative Extension (UCCE) orchard systems advisor based in Glenn County.   Ethephon Ethephon has a long history of usage since its discovery almost 50 years ago and Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) registration in 1973. It is one of the most widely utilized plant growth regulators in the world. Besides use in walnuts to speed up hull split, it is used for ripening pineapples and tomatoes and in hybrid seed production. When taken up by a plant it is converted to ethylene, a gas that is responsible for changes in texture, softening, color, and other processes involved in ripening.   In walnuts, according...

Read More

Nutrient Management of Zinc in Pistachios

By Sabrina Hill, Contributing Writer

Zinc is among the most likely deficient micronutrients for pistachios in the California growing areas, but there are ways for growers to monitor, prevent, and treat low zinc levels in the orchard. As summer progresses, growers should be considering leaf sampling to check for zinc deficiency in the orchard.   Author’s note: Information herein was collected from scholarly papers and presentations by University of California (UC) advisors Bob Beede, Brent Holtz, and Craig Kallsen.   Importance of Zinc Zinc is necessary for formulation of Auxin, which plays a role in cell elongation and the forming of chloroplast. It is needed for the development of pollen, along with flower bud differentiation and fruit set.   Factors and Signs of Zinc Deficiency There are several factors relating to zinc deficiency in pistachios and other nut crops. First, cut areas are more likely to be deficient. In addition, zinc has restricted solubility...

Read More

Nitrogen Calculator Optimizes N Use

By Almond Board of CA, Contributing Writer

Under the Irrigation Lands Regulatory Program (ILRP), Central Valley Water Quality Coalitions’ reporting requirements include farm evaluations, nitrogen summary reports, and a sediment and erosion plan. In high-vulnerability groundwater areas, growers are required to submit certified summary reports annually; in low-vulnerability areas, the report must be kept on-site and certification is not required.   It is important to comply with these requirements, as the Central Valley Regional Water Board is actively enforcing the program with heavy fines for growers who either have not signed up for a coalition or who have not submitted a Nitrogen Management Plan.   N Calculator Almond Board of California (ABC) has created a tool, the Almond Nitrogen Calculator, that not only helps almond growers to manage nitrogen applications for efficient fertilizer use, but also generates a Nitrogen Management Plan as required by ILRP. The N Calculator:  

  • Calculates fertilization rates based on newest UC nitrogen...

Read More