Cold Front Impacts Cali Growing

As a cold low-pressure system sweeps into California, growers across the state prepare for significant weather challenges. This system, expected to bring the coldest temperatures of the year, is poised to deliver light to moderate rainfall and potentially induce freeze and frost conditions in inland valleys such as Salinas and Santa Maria.

Forecast models indicate precipitation levels ranging between ¼” to ¾” through Saturday, accompanied by robust winds clocking in at 20-35mph, affecting not only California but also the Southwestern Desert regions. Following this initial bout of inclement weather, another weaker system is forecasted for Sunday, extending the chilly conditions into early next week.

The timing of these weather events complicates growers’ transitions from desert regions to coastal valleys, including Oxnard, Santa Maria, and Salinas. Here, the impact of rain and cool temperatures is palpable, affecting growth rates and field work, especially noticeable in crops like strawberries across Southern California.

Meanwhile, in the Southwest Desert region, growers grapple with mounting mildew issues, exacerbated by recent rains. As production nears its end, remaining acreage faces challenges from dehydration, driven by strong winds that adversely affect texture and shelf life. Persistent insect pressure further compounds these challenges, potentially resulting in premature pinking and other quality concerns in late-season supplies.

With weather-induced quality issues looming large, effective rotation management becomes paramount for growers across the state. Monitoring upcoming weather patterns will be essential in gauging their impact on supplies and overall product quality.

Seashore in partnership with PRO*ACT will continue to keep you updated on this region and source the freshest products available to us.

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