HMC News – February 2024

The atmospheric river brought much needed rain to the valley this month. We were fortunate to miss the flash flooding and extreme winds that battered the mountains and Southern California. Our new seasonal rain total is 7.11″, up from the 4.39″ from a few weeks ago. While the chill hours are lower than they have been in the last five years, we aren’t worried. The number of hours (733) is adequate, and not concerning. At this point our main concern is a freeze, especially if the temperature dips below 28 degrees Fahrenheit. Bloom has started in the early and some…

Pink blossoms on a tree in an orchard
HMC News – February 2022

After a winter with sufficient chill hours, some of our earliest stone fruit varieties have started to wake up from their winter hibernation as they push the first blooms of the 2022 season. These first flowers bring anticipation for the upcoming season along with the anxiety of knowing that unfavorable weather conditions can now have deleterious effects on the 2022 crop. Blossoms become commonplace around the valley as hundreds of different stone fruit varieties will be in different stages of bloom in late February and early March. We are in the process of grafting trees in some of our stone…

HMC News – March 2020

Plum trees are not self-pollinating like peach and nectarine trees, so they require pollination from other plum varieties in order to produce fruit. To give our plums the best chance of pollination, we plant blocks of cross-pollinating varieties adjacent to each other on large ranches. It is important to choose varieties which bloom at the same time to ensure that bees can do their work, moving pollen from the blossoms of one variety to another. when the bloom timing of the varieties is off, or when the weather is too cold for bees to fly (below 55°F), the result is…