California enjoying a respite from the drought
"The storm will partially replenish water supplies, but there is still a long way to go," commented Dan Flynn of the UC Davis Olive Center.
The lack of rainfall the last few years has left many olive farms with low soil moisture, stressing the trees, said Paul Vossen, UC Cooperative Extension farm advisor in Sonoma and Marin counties.
"Part of that stress influenced the crop load, which was lower than normal, and it also advanced the ripening of fruit," Vossen said. "This autumn harvest was at least two to three weeks early and was finished by Thanksgiving."
The story said the California drought cut U.S. olive oil production by 25 percent.
“The rainfall we are receiving right now is welcome for refilling the soil profiles, so that the olive trees can start off next spring with good growth,” Vossen said. “It is also a relief to see enough rain to start to see a replenishment of our reservoirs, so that irrigation water will once again be plentiful for next summer's needs. Even though we may get some temporary flooding, all in all, this rainfall is a welcome thing.”