February 22, 2019

Bloom progression is accelerating in the central and southern regions while cooler weather in Sacramento Valley has kept progression slower in that region. In the South San Joaquin Valley the early blooming Sonora achieved its peak number of open flowers on Thursday and now has around 10% of its flowers shedding petals. Meanwhile Nonpareil and its California type pollinizers have 70% or more of its flowers ready for pollination and should attain the peak number of open flowers over the weekend. Monterey is a day or two behind Nonpareil while Carmel has over 20% of its flowers open and is starting to catch up to the other varieties. The Northern San Joaquin Valley is one or two days behind the southern region in the aforementioned varieties, while the north is around 5 days behind the south. Butte and Padre orchards in all regions still do not have many flowers open, though more petal tissue is emerging.

Mowing vegetation – Butte County

 

High winds the last two days has made pollination more difficult. While bees did fly in all regions the quality of the flight was less than ideal. The strong and cold winds kept bees close to their hives and saw no region attain more than three or four hours of below average flight time at best. There was lots of variation within each region for number of bee flight hours. In the northern region, the Chico area approached 5 hours of fair activity, while the Arbuckle area to the west only got 2 hours of poor flight time. In the southern region the Madera area had 3 hours of good flight time while Bakersfield to the south only had 1 hour of poor pollination.

The higher winds forced growers to wait to finish their first bloom disease treatment. Fortunately, the colder winds have lowered the disease pressure in the orchards for the time being. Winds have also helped dry out orchards allowing for some growers to mow grass that had been growing from all the rain.

By Brian Noeller

Photos by KC Stone, Matt Willson, Ernie Reichmuth and Dennis Meinberg

Northern Conditions and Bloom Status

High Temperature: 58°F
Low Temperature: 33°F
Wind: 15 mph. Gusts up to 30 mph.
Sky Conditions: Clear skies.
Bee Activity: 3 hours of fair activity.
Current weather at the National Weather Service
VarietyDormantGreen TipPink BudPopcornBloomPetal FallJacketOut of Jacket
Sonora%%2%25%65%8%%%
Nonpareil%3%40%31%26%%%%
California%6%41%30%23%%%%
Carmel%16%51%24%9%%%%
Peerless%%%31%62%7%%%
Monterey%10%49%26%15%%%%
Butte13%50%32%3%2%%%%
Padre18%54%28%%%%%%

Central Conditions and Bloom Status

High Temperature: 58°F
Low Temperature: 36°F
Wind: 10 mph. Gusts up to 30 mph.
Sky Conditions: Clear skies.
Bee Activity: 4 hours of fair activity.
Current weather at the National Weather Service
VarietyDormantGreen TipPink BudPopcornBloomPetal FallJacketOut of Jacket
Sonora%%5%16%69%10%%%
Nonpareil%3%12%35%48%2%%%
California%4%20%30%45%1%%%
Carmel%15%35%24%26%%%%
Monterey%6%19%30%45%%%%
Butte%23%42%19%16%%%%
Padre9%38%35%10%8%%%%

Southern Conditions and Bloom Status

High Temperature: 54°F
Low Temperature: 30°F
Wind: 5 mph. Gusts up to 13 mph.
Rain: .25" in the morning.
Sky Conditions: Patchy clouds.
Bee Activity: 2 hours of fair activity.
Current weather at the National Weather Service
VarietyDormantGreen TipPink BudPopcornBloomPetal FallJacketOut of Jacket
Sonora%%%4%82%14%%%
Nonpareil%%10%13%72%5%%%
California%%13%15%70%2%%%
Carmel%5%62%10%23%%%%
Monterey%%20%20%58%2%%%
Butte%10%76%8%6%%%%
Padre2%37%61%%%%%%