February 20, 2015

This report covers conditions and observations made on Thursday, February 19, 2015.

Today’s photos, taken in Madera, first show the bloom in the Butte variety, followed by a grower mowing grass between his tree rows. Finally we can see a down-the-row view of Nonpareils shedding their petals and Carmel in full bloom.

Dense fog early gave way scattered clouds and hazy skies in different areas of the South San Joaquin Valley. Morning temperatures in the low 40s rose to upper 60s in the afternoon after the fog receded. Conditions varied widely throughout the region and consequently, so did bee activity. Where fog burned off early and temperatures rose quickly, bees were able to work for seven solid hours. In areas where the fog lifted later in the day and temperatures rose slowly, bees were only able to put in moderate activity for four or five hours.

As bloom continues to advance, the southern region has now progressed past the central region. The early blooming Sonora is now steadily dropping its petals and more jackets are beginning to show. Nonpareil is slowly beginning to shed its petals while the flowers available for pollination remain close to peak levels. California type varieties appear a day ahead of Nonpareil with more petals shedding. Monterey is in lock step with the Californias. The Carmel cultivar is reaching peak flowers available for pollination with little popcorn or petal fall being observed. Butte plantings are approaching peak number of flowers presenting for pollination with no measurable petals being shed. The Padre cultivar is approximately a couple of days behind.

As seen in the second image growers are continuing their field maintenance by mowing down grass to help with frost protection. With each day that passes more growers with available water are beginning to irrigate.

 

Conditions

High Temperature: 68°F
Low Temperature: 42°F
Wind: 2-8 mph
Rain: None
Sky Conditions: Scattered clouds and hazy skies
Bee Activity: 6 to 7 moderate to excellent hours of work depending on haze and fog
Current weather at the National Weather Service
Ernie Reichmuth
Click an image to enlarge it.

Bloom Status

VarietyDormantGreen TipPink BudPopcornBloomPetal FallJacketOut of Jacket
sonora%%%%45%35%20%%
nonpareil%%%4%75%16%5%%
california%%%%62%31%7%%
carmel%%%6%90%4%%%
monterey%%%5%63%27%5%%
butte%%5%12%83%%%%
padre%%20%23%57%%%%

Data reflects a composite of the growing region.