Florida: Peanut Harvest Enters Home Stretch – USDA

    Crop Progress and Condition for the Week Ending November 2, 2014.

    Weather Summary: According to Florida’s Automated Weather Network (FAWN), rainfall for the State was under one inch. Citra (Marion County) received the most rain with 0.59 of an inch this past week. Per the U.S. Drought Monitor, Florida was 86 percent drought free this past week. Temperatures ranged from 37 degrees for night time lows to 89 degrees for day time highs, across the State. The highest temperature was 89 degrees in Immokalee (Collier County). The lowest temperature in the State was 37 degrees in Lecanto (Citrus County).

    Field Crops: There was an average of 6.8 days suitable for field work this past week, up slightly from the previous week. Farmers across the State experienced a cooler, drier week. Peanut harvesting continued in the Panhandle and north Florida. Peanut harvesting was 90 percent complete, slightly above the previous week and the five year average. Hay continued to be cut. Cotton and soybean harvest continued in Holmes, Jackson, and Walton counties. Farmers in the Panhandle were finishing planting rye grass, oats, and other winter forage. Sugarcane harvesting continued in Hendry, Palm Beach, and Glades counties.

    Citrus: The only significant rainfall amount was in Kenansville (Osceola County) at 0.31 inches. All other citrus producing counties had less than one tenth of an inch of precipitation. Daytime temperatures, mostly in the 80s, were about average the majority of the week. Over the weekend a cool front dropped nighttime temperatures to the mid to upper 40s across the citrus region. As per the U.S. Drought Monitor, last updated October 28, 2014, no drought or abnormally dry conditions exist in any citrus producing areas.

    Most early variety fruit is being harvested for the fresh market. Weekly colored grapefruit has the most boxes harvested and is increasing steadily. Fallglo tangerine harvest typically runs through the middle to the end of November. Other varieties being harvested in small amounts include Ambersweet and Navel oranges, other early oranges, white grapefruit, and Sunburst tangerines.

    Grove activity included irrigation on several days during the week, mowing in preparation for harvest, removing dead trees in well cared groves and resetting of new trees. Processing plants are open primarily for packinghouse eliminations; a few are starting to open for field run on grapefruit and early oranges.

    Fruit and Vegetables: Vegetable farmers continued to plant fall vegetables and run irrigation. Vegetable harvest was increasing across southwest Florida with light quantities of beans, eggplant, peppers, tomatoes, watermelons, and squash coming to market. Fruits and vegetables being planted in Miami-Dade County included snap beans, pole beans, squash, peppers, tomato, eggplant, sweet corn, boniato, bitter melon, and malanga; being harvested included okra, boniato, malanga, bitter melon, and avocado. In Palm Beach County, harvesting of early plantings of sweet corn was underway.

    Livestock and Pastures: Pastures across the State are declining seasonally due to cooler weather and shorter days. Statewide, the cattle and pasture condition was mostly good.

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