Crop Progress and Condition for the Week Ending November 1, 2015.
Weather Summary: According to Florida’s Automated Weather Network (FAWN), rainfall ranged from no rain to 6.67 inches of rain in Jay (Santa Rosa County). Two FAWN locations received over two inches of rain, Defuniak Springs (Walton County) received 2.55 inches and North Port (Sarasota County) received 2.79 inches. All other FAWN locations received under two inches of rain.
As per the U.S. Drought Monitor, last updated October 27, 2015, Florida was 86 percent drought free. Temperatures ranged from 53 degrees for night time lows to 89 degrees for daytime highs. The daytime high temperatures ranged from 81 degrees in Jay (Santa Rosa County) to 89 degrees in five locations. The lowest temperature in the State was 53 degrees in Defuniak Springs (Walton County).
Field Crops: There was an average of 6.3 days suitable for field work this past week, down slightly from the previous week. Escambia, Okaloosa, Santa Rosa, and Walton counties received heavy rain this past week which delayed harvesting and planting. Peanut harvesting continued with completion at 92 percent, ahead of last year and the five-year average.
Cotton harvesting continued in Holmes and Walton counties. The quality of the cotton appeared to be poor due to wet conditions. Winter forage suffered from drought in Jefferson County. Okaloosa, Pasco, and Walton county farmers were planting winter forage.
Rye grass planting continued in Flagler and Putnam counties, and corn and hay were harvested. Sugarcane harvesting continued Glades, Hendry, Palm Beach, and St. Lucie counties.
Fruit and Vegetables: Planting of cabbage and leafy vegetables continued in Flagler and Putnam counties. Squash was harvested in Hillsborough County. Light volumes of green beans, cucumbers, eggplant, peppers, squash, tomatoes, and watermelons were going to market in Collier, Glades, Hendry, and Lee counties.
Vegetable and fruit crops planted in Miami-Dade County were; tomatoes, cucumbers, yellow squash, zucchini, green beans, pole beans, peppers, eggplant, sweet corn, strawberries, boniato, malanga, and bitter melon. Crops maturing in good condition and being harvested in Miami-Dade County were; green beans, okra, boniato, malanga, bitter melon, avocado, sweet potatoes, and other tropical fruits. All crops were being irrigated.
Livestock and Pastures: Permanent pastures across the State declined seasonally. Ranchers were feeding hay in Holmes, Okaloosa, and Walton counties. Statewide, the cattle condition was mostly good and pasture condition was fair to good.
Citrus: Most citrus growing counties had average or above average temperatures this past week. Daily highs were in the mid to upper 80s on most days. Rainfall was the highest in the southern area and lowest in the Indian River area. Joshua (De Soto County) had the most rainfall at 1.64 inches, followed by Sebring (Highlands County) at 0.99 inches.
Ten of eighteen monitored stations had less than a half of an inch of rainfall, with the least being in St. Lucie West (St. Lucie County), receiving no rain. Even with the lesser rainfall over the past couple weeks in several counties, the U.S. Drought Monitor, last updated October 27, 2015, reports the complete citrus producing region was drought free.
Growers have been busy spraying to lower the psylid population in order to control greening. Most owners and grove managers mowed, applied herbicides, and put out boxes and trailers in preparation for harvesting of early variety citrus. Irrigation ran in areas where rainfall has been nominal the past couple weeks.
Harvest increased on early oranges (including Ambersweet, Hamlin, and Navels), grapefruit, and Fallglo tangerines. All harvested fruit to this point in the season has been for the fresh market. A couple of processing plants have opened to take eliminations.