Blue Diamond California Almond Bloom Report – March 13, 2013

 

Blue Diamond Almonds – Almond Bloom Report – March 13, 2013

Northern California Almond Bloom Report –

Clear, bright skies covered the northern region at sunrise, Tuesday, promising another day of good support for the final days of the 2013 almond bloom. Morning lows were reported in the lower 40’s while daytime highs reached into the mid 70’s. Observers reported that the calm conditions conspired with the warm temperatures to drive the bees into the orchards in search of flowers for 8 to 9 hours of very good activity.

Observers are reporting that the nutlets of the Sonora variety can be easily seen breaking free from their protective jackets in all area of the region. Meanwhile, in the region’s northern areas where the majority of the Sacramento Valley’s Peerless almond trees are grown, nutlets of this hard-shell almond can also be seen splitting the jacket, with the largest examples casting their jackets to the orchard floor.

The bloom of the Nonpareil, California and Monterey varieties has been completed, with each type now having the vast majority of their flowers in the jacket stage. Carmel continues its steady decline and is expected to complete its bloom shortly, given the warmer temperatures forecast for today.  Observers are reporting that in much of the region, the Butte and Padre varieties were the only ones with viable bloom available to the bees and were drawing their full attention as they searched for nectar and pollen to take back to the hives.

Growers are enjoying the warm temperatures and are taking advantage of the calm conditions to complete fertilizer applications and begin fungicide treatments. While the current conditions offer little opportunity for fungal growth, the possibility of rain next week has growers preparing for increased disease pressure. Many have foregone treatments this year or have made only one treatment given the absence of significant rain during this year’s bloom.

Conditions

High Temperature:  76°F
Low Temperature: 40°F
Wind: 0 to 5 mph.
Rain: None
Sky Conditions: Clear
Bee Activity: 8 to 9 hours of very good bee activity.

Bloom Status

  Dormant Green Tip Pink Bud Popcorn Bloom Petal Fall Jacket Nutlet
Sonora 0% 0% 0% 0% 0% 3% 85% 12%
Nonpareil 0% 0% 0% 0% 5% 19% 76% 0%
California 0% 0% 0% 0% 2% 19% 79% 0%
Carmel 0% 0% 0% 0% 13% 37% 50% 0%
Peerless 0% 0% 0% 0% 0% 0% 98% 2%
Monterey 0% 0% 0% 0% 3% 18% 79% 0%
Butte 0% 0% 0% 0% 22% 38% 40% 0%
Padre 0% 0% 0% 0% 27% 53% 20% 0%

Data reflects a composite of the growing region

Central California Almond Bloom Report –

Temperatures continue to rise in the central region, providing good support for the balance of the 2013 almond bloom and for the developing crop. Morning low temperatures were reported in the lower 40’s throughout the region, with temperatures quickly rising to their maximum for the day in the mid and upper 70’s. Observers noted that the bees took advantage of the warmer temperatures and put in a full 8 to 9 hours of excellent activity, focused primarily on the rapidly declining bloom of the Butte and Padre varieties.

The amount of viable bloom available for pollination continues to decline as the 2013 almond bloom advances towards its inevitable conclusion. Nutlets of the Sonora variety can be found breaking free from their protective jackets and growing in size. The Sonora, along with the small amount of Winters found in the region is also becoming quite green as their newly emerged leaves grow in size.

Bees could be seen and heard aggressively working the fields on Tuesday searching for flowers to feed upon in many Nonpareil, Carmel and California plantings. However, the largest amount of flowers and therefore the greatest activity was observed in the Butte and Padre, which still has a significant volume of flowers available for pollination. While advanced Butte and Padre plantings along the west side of the region appear to be covered in petals, observers are reporting that a significant proportion of the flowers are no longer viable and that the plantings have in fact moved strongly into the petal fall stage over the past few days.

Conditions

High Temperature:  77°F
Low Temperature: 40°F
Wind: 0 to 5 mph.
Rain: None
Sky Conditions: Clear
Bee Activity: 8 to 9 hours of excellent bee activity.

Bloom Status

  Dormant Green Tip Pink Bud Popcorn Bloom Petal Fall Jacket Nutlet
Sonora 0% 0% 0% 0% 0% 2% 93% 5%
Nonpareil 0% 0% 0% 0% 5% 16% 79% 0%
California 0% 0% 0% 0% 7% 14% 79% 0%
Carmel 0% 0% 0% 0% 11% 21% 68% 0%
Monterey 0% 0% 0% 0% 10% 18% 72% 0%
Butte 0% 0% 0% 0% 41% 28% 31% 0%
Padre 0% 0% 0% 0% 51% 28% 21% 0%

Data reflects a composite of the growing region

Southern California Almond Bloom Report –

Rising temperatures matched or broke a few records in the southern San Joaquin Valley on Tuesday, pushing bud developing strongly ahead. Morning low temperatures were widely reported in the low to mid 40’s, while daytime highs reached into the mid and upper 70’s.  Observers in Kern County reported light, patchy fog early in the morning, the result of residual moisture remaining after last week’s rain. However, what little fog did form quickly dissipated and was not a factor for the bees.  Rather, observers reported that the clear blue skies and rapidly rising temperatures encouraged the bees to leave their hives for a full 8 hours of excellent activity in search of flowers.

Observers are noting that the floors of many orchards around the southern region are becoming white with the snow-like covering of petals as the almond bloom drives towards its conclusion. Nutlets of the Sonora variety are now beginning to break free from their protective jackets, while those of the Nonpareil are increasing in size and beginning to strain against the jacket. The Monterey has joined the Sonora, Nonpareil and California types in completing its bloom period, now that the proportion of viable flowers available for pollination has dropped below 10%. With just over 10% of its flowers viable, the Carmel will be the next variety to complete its bloom, most likely within the next 24 hours, given the forecasted temperatures for today. Butte and Padre are also declining rapidly, with the vast majority of the flowers these late blooming cultivars now in the petal fall and jacket stages.  Nevertheless, given the amount of viable flowers available elsewhere in the orchards, the Butte and Padre was earning the nearly undivided attention of the bees on Tuesday as they searched for flowers to forage.

Conditions

High Temperature:  78°F
Low Temperature: 43°F
Wind: 0 to 10 mph.
Rain: None.
Sky Conditions: Clear
Bee Activity: 8 Hours very good bee activity.

Bloom Status

  Dormant Green Tip Pink Bud Popcorn Bloom Petal Fall Jacket Nutlet
Sonora 0% 0% 0% 0% 0% 4% 95% 1%
Nonpareil 0% 0% 0% 0% 2% 20% 78% 0%
California 0% 0% 0% 0% 1% 18% 81% 0%
Carmel 0% 0% 0% 0% 12% 42% 46% 0%
Monterey 0% 0% 0% 0% 9% 35% 56% 0%
Butte 0% 0% 0% 0% 15% 41% 44% 0%
Padre 0% 0% 0% 0% 23% 51% 26% 0%

Data reflects a composite of the growing region