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UC Cooperative Extension
Karmjot Randhawa
County Director
(559) 243-6564

UC Cooperative Extension
145 Tozer St. Suite 103
Madera, CA 93638
Office Phone: (559) 675-7879
Fax: (559) 675-0639

Dispatches from the Orchard


News for nut crops, stone fruits, and figs

Issue Articles Type Date Added
Spring 2024 newsletter

In this issue:

Silverleaf nightshade in young pistachios

Irrigation of young pistachios

Carbohydrates, dormancy, and yield in pistachios

Early leaf sampling protocol of pistachios

Save the date for the 2024 pistachio short course, November 5-7!

DOCX 4/26/24
Madera/Merced Pistachio day is tomorrow!

It will be held at the Madera County Farm Bureau. The agenda and address are in the attached PDF. I hope to see you there!

PDF 4/8/24
Reminder Madera County Almond Day is tomorrow!

Madera County almond day will be held on March 22, 2024, at the Madera County Farm Bureau building again.

This year, the Madera/Merced pistachio day will be back in Madera, on April 9, 2024. It will also be held at the farm bureau building. Please see the PDF newsletter for the agendas!

PDF 1/25/24
Winter 2024 meetings

Happy new year, everyone! 

There are three upcoming meetings in the San Joaquin Valley:


January 17: Statewide Pistachio Day, in Visalia, California

February 1: Tri County Walnut Day in Tulare, California

February 2: Quad County Walnut Institute in Stockton, California.

See the attached newsletter for the agenda and registration information!

PDF 1/11/24
Winter meetings and research site request

We have three upcoming meetings. If you're interested in the agenda, location, and signup links, please see the attached PDF.

An overview:

Salinity management meeting - December 13

Statewide pistachio day - January 17

Tri county walnut day - February 1


Additionally, I am looking for a newly planted nursery budded or recently field budded pistachio orchard for a nitrogen and phosphorus fertilization trial. More details are in the newsletter, and feel free to reach out with any questions.

Happy holidays!

PDF 12/8/23
Soil health and whole orchard recycling field day May 18

Are you interested in soil health and/or have questions about whole orchard recycling? Come attend a field day in Gustine on May 18! Details are in the attached flier.

PDF 4/21/23
Almond replant field day May 17

Come to the Kearney Agricultural Research and Extension Center to see a research trial examining whole orchard recycling, fumigation, and a nitrogen+phosphorus fertilization trial.  We will also be having talks on phytophthora management in newly planted almonds.

Registration is required and we are charging a $5 attendance fee. Lunch will be provided with an RSVP, but only if you register before May 12.

The agenda and registration link are in the attached PDF.

I hope to see you there!

PDF 4/14/23
Almond replant field day May 17

Come to the Kearney Agricultural Research and Extension Center to see a research trial examining whole orchard recycling, fumigation, and a nitrogen+phosphorus fertilization trial.  We will also be having talks on phytophthora management in newly planted almonds.

Registration is required and we are charging a $5 attendance fee. Lunch will be provided with an RSVP, but only if you register before May 12.

The agenda and registration link are in the attached PDF.

I hope to see you there!

PDF 4/14/23
Madera County Resource Conservation District Events

The Madera County Resource Conservation District is holding several events in April, listed below. They are also offering free distribution uniformity tests in April through November. If you are interested in a DU test or any of these meetings, please see the attached PDF!

1) Grower experience with recharge (April 12)

2) Ag plastic container recycling event (April 17)

3) Benefits of healthy soils in agriculture (April 28)

PDF 3/31/23
Census of Agriculture

The USDA National Agricultural Statistics Service is currently conducting the 2022 Census of Agriculture, and questionnaires were sent out in December 2022. Please take the time to respond to these! The data collected in these informs decisions on policy, programs, rural development, and research. More information can be found in the attached flier.

PDF 3/28/23
NRCS Groundwater Recharge Pilot Program

The National Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) pilot program for groundwater recharge (On-Farm Recharge, and Groundwater Recharge Basin or Trench) is open for applications and the deadline is April 3rd. Please see below details for additional information. If you are interested in signing up, please contact your local NRCS field office or Wendy Rash at 209-483-8257, or by email at wendy.rash@usda.gov.

PDF 3/23/23
Crop Manage workshop April 19

A crop manage and hands-on pressure chamber training workshop will be held at the Kearney Agricultural Research and Extension Center on April 19. Please see the attached PDF for the agenda and the sign-up link.

PDF 3/20/23
Climate change workshop March 22

Are you curious to learn how climate change may impact your nut orchard in the future? Are you interested in learning more about the climate smart agriculture program, including how to get incentives? 

Come join a workshop on March 22 from 8 to 12:30 (includes a free lunch!) at the UC Cooperative Extension building in Merced. Registration is free but required for an accurate head count.

PDF 3/10/23
Wildfire preparedness survey

UCANR researchers would like to understand what Californians need for wildfire preparedness. Please consider taking this 15 minute survey - the QR code in the attached PDF will take you to the webpage!

PDF 3/6/23
Quad County Walnut Institute Feb 28

The 2023 Quad County Walnut Institute will be held in Stockton on February 28. Please see the attached PDF for the agenda.

PDF 2/14/23
Quad County Walnut Institute Feb 28

The 2023 Quad County Walnut Institute will be held in Stockton on February 28. Please see the attached PDF for the agenda.

PDF 2/14/23
Madera (and Merced) county almond and pistachio meetings

I will be hosting an almond and pistachio commodity meeting again this year.  As I have formally assumed responsibilities for pistachios in Merced county, I will be changing the location every other year. This year it will be held in Merced! The almond meeting will still be held in Madera. Please see the attached PDF for the agendas and locations. Registration is not necessary and attendance is free.

PDF 1/19/23
U.S. EPA proposed changes to rodenticide labels for agricultural use: opportunity for public commen

Rodenticides are currently under review by the EPA. The attached PDF describes what you might expect when the review is done, as well as the opportunity to provide public comment.

PDF 1/19/23
Crop Manage hands on workshop

Crop Manage is an irrigation and nitrogen fertilization decision support tool developed by University of California researchers. This workshop will provide hands-on training to help you learn the newest version. Almonds, walnuts, pistachios, and many other crops are supported.  Space is limited to 25 individuals, so sign up today if you're interested!

PDF 1/17/23
Jan-Feb meetings

We have three upcoming meetings in the San Joaquin Valley:


January 13: North San Joaquin Valley Almond Day

January 18: Statewide Pistachio Day

February 2: Tri-County Walnut Day


The agendas and location are in the attached PDF.

PDF 1/5/23
Four upcoming meetings in November

Irrigation management basics classes, held in

Madera on November 7

Bakersfield on November 14

Modesto on November 16

And a soil health field day in Parlier on November 16. Agendas and registration links are in the attached PDF.  Hope to see you there!

PDF 10/27/22
Back to Basics Irrigation meeting Nov 7

I'm holding a meeting on the foundations of irrigation management at Madera Community College on November 7.  Space is limited, please RSVP in advance! The agenda and registration link are in the attached PDF.

PDF 10/10/22
Advances in pistachio water management workshop

July 7 at the International Agri-Center, $60 to attend (lunch included).  You can find the agenda and registration link in the attached newsletter, hope to see you there!

PDF 6/17/22
Summer 2022 meetings

UCANR advisors are hosting two meetings on June 1.  One is a meeting on olive oil irrigation in San Joaquin County, the other is a rootstock field day and hands on pressure chamber training at the Lindcove Research and Extension Center.  Locations, agendas, and CE information is in the attached PDF.

Additionally, a UC Davis research group is hoping to collect suckers and flower/nut formation data in a pistachio orchard that is transitioning from non-bearing to bearing (approximately 3-5th leaf).  Contact information is in the attached PDF.

PDF 5/12/22
Variety Trial Field Day in Chowchilla 5/5

Good morning,

I will be holding a variety trial field day on May 5, 9 to 11.  Please be at the meeting location a bit early as it takes some time to get to the actual location. More information is in the attached flier!

PDF 5/2/22
Reminder: 2022 Madera County spring meetings

Friendly reminder that I have two meetings coming up: a pistachio meeting on March 29 and an almond one the following week on April 5.  Looking forward to seeing you there, the agenda is in the attached PDF.


We're back to in person meetings (hopefully)! I've scheduled a pistachio meeting for March 29, and an almond meeting for April 5.  Both will be held at the Madera County Farm Bureau from 7:30 AM to 12:00 PM.  Please see the attached PDF for the agenda.  I will send out an announcement via this newsletter if COVID restrictions force the meeting online.

Additionally, a Ph.D. student at UC Davis is looking to talk to growers about how they are impacted by water management decisions made by the state.  If you would like to share your experiences, her contact information is also in the attached PDF.

PDF 3/2/22
Cover Crop Tour March 3

Are you interested in cover cropping but want to talk to growers who have actually done it? Interested in learning about the benefits of cover cropping? The Western Cover Crop Council is holding a tour in the Sacramento Valley. The attached flier contains the agenda and registration details.

PDF 2/2/22
North San Joaquin Valley Almond Day

North SJV almond day is February 8, held in person.  Admission is free, you can sign up at the door.  

PDF 1/31/22
Spring 2022 meetings

Please see the attached PDF for information on a meeting going over aflatoxin contamination in pistachio and the 2022 principles in fruit and nut tree growth, production, and maintenance course.

PDF 1/26/22
Soil health funding available

Please see the attached flier for more information.

PDF 1/7/22
November 2021 In A Nutshell

Meeting announcements: Kearney Nematode Day(s), Statewide Pistachio Day

Articles: Pistachio chill, Gill's Mealybug


PDF 11/29/21
Nematode Management Field Day Nov 30 and Dec 1

Come to the Kearney Agricultural Research and Extension Center to learn about nematode management from UC Riverside nematologist Andreas Westphal. CEUs pending.


Registration is limited to 100 participants. You can sign up here: https://surveys.ucanr.edu/survey.cfm?surveynumber=35743

PDF 10/21/21
New fig pest alert - Black Fig Fly

A newly detected pest of figs, the Black Fig Fly, has been detected in Southern California. Due to the potential risk to the California fig industry, we are asking folks to keep on the lookout for this damaging pest, and to alert your county Agricultural Commissioner if you find something. 

PDF 8/30/21
Summer 2021 Newsletter

Attached are two pistachio specific articles: large bug control and irrigation considerations during a drought year.

PDF 6/18/21
Summer 2021 meetings

There's still time to sign up for Turning Lab Reports into Action held June 11


The agenda and registration link is in the newsletter

PDF 5/12/21
Looking for research collaborators

Are you hoping to learn how to control alkali weed better?  What about increase your pistachio fertilization efficiency?  We're looking for collaborators for two research projects on these subjects, please see the newsletter for more information.

PDF 4/19/21
New In A Nutshell Issue

Attached is the 2021 March In A Nutshell.  This issue includes information on walnut budbreak and bloom, Phytophthora, an orchard recycling how-to guide, nitrogen and zinc fertilization, and information on upcoming webinars.

PDF 3/17/21
We've moved! And a walnut meeting announcement

We've moved!  We are now located at:

145 Tozer Street Suite 103
Madera, CA 93638

The office will still be minimally staffed while Madera County is in the Purple Zone, so if you need to stop by please contact me.  I am still available for farm calls.

The Statewide Walnut meeting is virtual this year, please see the agenda for more details.

PDF 1/20/21
Reminder: Upcoming meetings January 2021

Statewide Pistachio Day is January 12 and 13, 2021, featuring talks on water and irrigation, climate change, salinity tolerance of rootstocks, new Navel Orangeworm research, and more.  Click the link below for the full agenda, as well as to register.  Continuing education credits have been requested.



San Joaquin Almond Day is January 14, and talks include research updates, stink bug monitoring, and nitrogen management.  Continuing education credits will be requested. 

You can find the full agenda and registration link here: San Joaquin Valley Almond Day (ucanr.edu)

PDF 12/11/20
Pistachio Short Course Early Bird Pricing Ends October 26

The University of California, Division of Agriculture and Natural Resources will be offering a virtual, multi-day, multi-topic Pistachio Production Short Course in November 2020. This course will provide participants with the latest information and research from experts on pistachio orchard production, field preparation, planting, pruning, economics, diseases, integrated pest management, and harvesting. The course is designed for orchard decision-makers, and covers the accepted science that supports current and developing production practices, including regional differences.

The program will take place virtually, over a span of six days Registration is currently open and offers a full course package or individual day registrations.

PDF 10/8/20
Establishing Nut Orchards Webinar

Register today to learn about  Establishing Nut Crop Orchards from experts with the University of California and USDA. Different topics will be presented during each session. $10 registration fee will allow you to attend any or all of the sessions from 3-5 PM on July 29, August 5 and August 12. CEUs have been obtained from CCA for all 3 sessions and have been applied for from CA DPR for Aug. 5 (1.0 Other). For more information on registration, contact anrprogramsupport@ucanr.edu, 530-750-1361 or for course content, contact Phoebe Gordon, pegordon@ucanr.edu, Orchard Crops Farm Advisor, UCCE Madera (detailed agenda at //ucanr.edu/sites/PSU/files/329744.pdf)

PDF 7/13/20
Winter 2020 meetings

Please see the announcements for Tri County Walnut Day and Statewide Pistachio Day.

PDF 1/9/20
2019 Orchard IPM Meeting December 18

Come to the 2019 orchard IPM meeting.  Hear talks on hull rot in almonds, navel orangeworm control, orchard weed management, and updates from the Madera County Agricultural Commissioner's office.  Location and times in the atttached PDF.  

PDF 10/23/19
San Joaquin Valley Spray Application Short Course

Register today to attend the San Joaquin Valley Spray Application Short Course, November 12-14, 2019 at the Kearney Agricultural Research and Extension Center.

Join us for this intensive 3-day short course on spray application research and extension, led by CE Specialist Peter Larbi. Includes two in-classroom lecture days and one outdoor, hands-on demonstration day.


  • Teach participants about improving agricultural productivity while reducing the impact of pesticides and other agricultural chemicals on the environment.
  • Share knowledge of best practices for safe, economical, and environmentally sound pesticide spray application.

Register online before October 22 for the $750 Early Bird price.

Continuing Education credits from California Department of Pesticide Regulation and California Crop Advisors have been applied for and are pending approval.

Interested in becoming a Sponsor? Please complete the Sponsorship Form.


Contacts for more information:
Logistics and Registration – Julia Kalika, Program and Events Specialist, anrprogramsupport@ucanr.edu 530-750-1380

Course Content – Peter Ako Larbi, Assistant Cooperative Extension Specialist

PDF 9/25/19
Irrigation training day August 27

Come learn basic irrigation management in orchards and vineyards at the Madera Farm Bureau from 8-10 AM on August 27.  We will cover evapotranspiration, soil sensors, and pressure chambers.  Registration is free, but since space is limited, required. The link for registration is in the flier! 

PDF 7/29/19
Spring 2019

Alkalaiweed is a new weed popping up in pistachio orchards.  If you have it, please participate in a survey to help us learn more about it.

Pistachio crop insurance listening session held on March 13th in the Madera County Farm Bureau building.

Almond nutrient and water management field day held on March 14th in Del Rey, California.

Almond orchard cover crop field day held on March 21st in Winton, California.

See inside for more details.

PDF 3/5/19
Summer 2019

Maximizing walnut quality to improve value in a low-price year, Regulated Deficit Irrigation in Almonds to Manage Hull Rot, and On-Farm Recharge on Pecans for Groundwater Sustainability

Includes a Survey on grower interest in the Sustainable Groundwater Management Act (SGMA) and On Farm Recharge (OFR),

Meeting announcement: Kings/Tulare Counties NUT HARVEST SAFETY TRAINING DAY

PDF 7/9/19
Winter Meeting Announcement

REMINDER:  the second annual winter IPM meeting is on December 12, 2018.  Speakers and location details are in the attached PDF.  You can register for this free event online at cemadera.ucanr.edu or by calling 559-675-7879 ext. 7209.  Registration is not necessary, but appreciated.

2.0 DPR continuing education credits have been approved.  See you there!

PDF 10/29/18
Almond Mating Disruption Meeting

Kris Tollerup will be holding a meeting on mating disruption at the Kearney REC in Parlier, California on September 25.  2.5 units of other credits will be offered.  For more information, please see the attached flier.

PDF 9/5/18
Summer 2018

CORRECTION: I stated that you could soil apply Solubor at 50 lbs/acre, when I should have stated Borax, which is approximately 10.5% boron (Solubor is 20%), and added the pounds of actual boron/acre.  The corrected sentences now read: 

"Major boron deficiencies can be corrected via a soil application (major deficiencies would be far below the critical value).  In both almonds and pistachios, broadcast 25 to 50 lbs of Borax per acre (about 2-4 lbs of actual boron). Make sure to take into account soil texture: lighter textured soils should have lower rates of application."



New podcast: Growing the Valley, Alternaria leaf blight in pistachios, how to monitor boron in almonds and pistachios, and announcement for the 2018 Walnut Short Course.

PDF 6/25/18
Spring 2018

Stink bugs and plant bugs in fruit crops, guest article with an herbicide sprayer checklist by Kurt Hembree, and March 20th nutrient management meeting announcement

PDF 3/8/18
Winter 2017

Navel orangeworm, orchard preplant considerations

PDF 12/21/17