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Invasive Nutria Damages CA Waterways — Requesting Farmer Assistance!

Rodents of unusual size —California has got them! The new kid on the block is Nutria, a semiaquatic rodent, that has invaded California’s waterways, and is doing a lot of damage.  USDA is asking farmers for help in locating these pests to be removed. Derek Milsaps from USDA-APHIS presented some information on this pest at the Tree & Vine Expo …

New High-Yield Strawberry, Raspberry Varieties Released

By Krisy Gashler These berries yield like the dickens. Cornell’s berry breeding program is releasing two new varieties, which will be available for planting in spring 2019: a strawberry, Dickens, and a raspberry, Crimson Treasure. Both varieties produce large fruits with vibrant colors that maintain peak flavor for longer than most heritage varieties. The new berries are the handiwork of …

Dealing with Diamondback Moth

It has been a couple of “rough” weeks managing the diamondback moth (DBM), Plutella xylostella (Lepidoptera: Plutellidae), in the Central Coast. Based on my conversations with some PCAs, we are managing large populations of this moth, resulting in high infestations in cole crops like broccoli and Brussel sprouts. Larvae of this insect will typically feed on the underside of the …

Got “Red” Aphids?

Red Aphids

Since last week, I have been receiving samples with “red” aphids to get the identification. It turned out that this time, most of these ‘reddish’ aphids were identified as the lettuce aphid, Nasonovia ribis-nigri (Fig. 1). To me, they look more red-orange; however, their distinct black marks on the abdomen and short cauda (finger-like, short appendage at the end of …

Microbial Soil Amendments to Improve Strawberry Health & Production

In the recent years, interest in biological products – nutrient, biostimulant, soil amendment or pesticide products of plant and microbial origin – is increasing for use in agriculture.  While the growth of the organic industry is partly responsible for this interest, an increase in research exploring the potential of these products and a continued emphasis on sustainable agriculture could also …

Steve Patricio Honored for Significant Contributions to Ag

Western Growers to Present Patricio with 2018 Award of Honor on October 30 Western Growers will honor Stephen (Steve) Patricio, who’s visionary leadership has advanced the agricultural industry by leaps and bounds, with the 2018 Award of Honor. The Award of Honor is Western Growers’ highest recognition of industry achievement and is given to individuals who have contributed extensively to …

New Proposal for Immigration Reform Backed by Champion Boxers & Farmers

New Proposal for Immigration Reform Backed by Champion Boxers & Farmers

Immigration reform seems to be an ongoing issue our legislature cannot seem to resolve on their own. That is why farmers have allied with champion boxers and other world-renown athletes in presenting a new solution known as EARNED. Watch this interview with Nisei Farmers League President Manuel Cunha who briefly explains the program and how it will benefit undocumented farm …

What to do When ICE or OSHA Shows Up

California farmers have become quite the target for Immigration & Customs Enforcement (ICE) and Cal/OSHA visits. Whether these visits are warranted or come by surprise, farmers should be prepared for them, based on the following suggestions offered by labor law attorney Stacy Henderson at the recent Almond Alliance Convention, presented in this video. Read more about it in Pacific Nut …

New Produce Safety Laws Not New to California Cantaloupe Farmers

On January 26, 2018 fruit, nut and vegetable farmers throughout the country began being required to follow specific food safety practices under a new federal regulation known as the Produce Safety Rule. For now, the new regulation applies only to large farms, defined as those with annual produce sales of $500,000 or more. These are exactly the kinds of farms …

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