Posts Tagged: Bob Beede
Because of the drought, California almond farmers have been forced to drill new wells, rely on salty groundwater for irrigation and bulldoze some trees, reported Robert Rodriguez in the Fresno Bee.
The story presented results from the USDA National Agricultural Statistics Service, which worked with state ag officials to send surveys to 688 California almond farmers; 458 of them responded.
The survey found that nearly 70 percent of almond farmers have only groundwater to irrigate their trees. About 23 percent said they had to drill new wells and 32 percent were reconditioning existing wells.
Normally growers mix surface water with groundwater to dilute the salts in water that has been pumped up from wells. But for many farmers, that hasn't been possible this year.
"Consequently, the amount of salt in the trees has placed them under stress and it is being reflected in smaller nut size, reduced growth and the potential for small crops in the future," said Bob Beede, University of California Cooperative Extension emeritus adviser who specialists in nut crops. He added that salt buildup can kill a tree.
UC food safety expert Michele Jay-Russell said federal officials should draw inspiration from the Leafy Green Marketing Agreement when they finalize the new regulations. California and Arizona put the agreement in place after the 2006 spinach E. coli outbreak, the article said. It includes a wide range of food safety metrics, from how often to test irrigation water to the optimal method of composting and proper use of animal manures.
Jay-Russell also said research into animal biology could help identify new strategies to prevent or treat listeria. Unlike other pathogens such as E. coli, listeria can sicken both humans and animals. Because sheep, goats and cattle develop similar symptoms to humans, she suggests studies of this parallel animal disease could lead to a better understanding of human illness.
Every day is Food Day
Cathryn Couch, The Santa Rosa Press Democrat
Sonoma County is blessed with a rich agricultural heritage and a strong local food culture. Today, growing interest and concern is merging with strong support from the Sonoma County Board of Supervisors and new opportunities for collaboration. Among the highlights of "exciting food happenings" listed in this article was the first county-wide Food Forum presented in January by the Sonoma County Food System Alliance. The alliance, together the Board of Supervisors and UC Cooperative Extension, gathered nearly 300 stakeholders to explore what’s working and identify what’s needed to create a healthy food system for all.
Resident, farming scientist outraged by city’s pruning job
Eiji Yamashita, Hanford Sentinel
UC Cooperative Extension farm advisor Bob Beede is outraged by the way three ornamental Bradford pear street trees near his home were pruned by the City of Hanford.
“They came in and butchered all of my lower foliage off my trees. If you talk to professional arborists, they’d tell you this is the wrong way to prune an ornamental tree,” Beede said.
Beede is a veteran farm advisor for the University of California Cooperative Extension in Kings County. He works closely with farmers in the area to improve their fruit tree production, the newspaper reported.