Pistachios Archives - West Coast Nut





Pistachios



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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A Few Arthropod Pests to Consider on Establishing Pistachio Trees

By Kris Tollerup, University of California Cooperative Extension Area-wide IPM Advisor, Kearny Agricultural Research and Extension Center, Parlier, California

The University of California (UC), Pest Management Guidelines provide recommendations for managing approximately 14 insect and mite pests on pistachio. A few of those pests, growers and pest control advisers (PCAs) should pay close attention to during the first few years while young trees establish. According to the National Agriculture Statistic Service, the industry in California has expanded by about 35 percent between 2010 and 2017 from roughly 215,000 to just over 329,000 acres. New plantings in that period ranged from 6,730 (2010) to 24,500 (2013), with acreage expanding by 18,000 in 2017. With so many acres of new pistachio trees in California, it is fitting to highlight a few economically important pests covered by the UC Pest Management Guidelines to prompt growers and PCAs to start thinking about the coming season. A group of insects important on establishing trees is the hemipterans. They have piercing-sucking mouthparts and include true...

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Pistachio Export Aflatoxin Reporting

By Cecilia Parsons Associate Editor

In an effort to reduce rejections of pistachio shipments by the European Union (EU) due to aflatoxin, the Administrative Committee for Pistachios (ACP) developed the voluntary Pistachio Export Aflatoxin Reporting Program (PEAR). The program provides standardized reporting of sampling, analytical certification and traceability, equal to the official testing done by the EU at ports of entry. Bob Klein, manager of ACP, said the program, implemented late in 2018, is working well, with only one rejection of a shipment, compared to about 20 in the previous reporting period. He noted that last year’s low NOW damage in the pistachio crop was a major contributor to the high quality of the crop and the low aflatoxin levels. Eight pistachio handlers, representing 95 percent of the pistachio exports to the EU are participating in the PEAR program. Aflatoxin, a toxic and carcinogenic byproduct of the fungi Aspergillus flavus, contaminates pistachios primarily due 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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Mating Disruption: A Crucial Tool for Nut Growers

By Kathy Coatney Editor

Mating disruption for navel orangeworm (NOW) has been widely tested throughout California with numerous research studies, and peer-reviewed research has demonstrated its efficacy. Mating disruption is a very simple process. Females emit pheromones, males use those pheromones to find the female. If an orchard is flooded with artificially produced pheromone the entire orchard smells like a female and the males struggle to find the real females. If they don’t find each other, they don’t mate, and if they don’t mate there are no eggs, no larvae, and less overall nut damage.   Mating Disruption in Almonds and Pistachios Navel orangeworm is a major and costly pest of almonds and pistachios for growers and processors. Currently, growers use winter sanitation and chemical sprays for control, but mating disruption is another important tool at their disposal. How mating disruption works is dispensers contain an artificial pheromone. They are placed in the orchard...

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