MAITLAND, Fla. — According to the National Agricultural Statistics Service in Florida, there were 6.6 days suitable for fieldwork for the week ending Sunday, January 3, 2021. Precipitation for the state ranged from no rain in many locations to 7.2 inches in Monticello (Jefferson County). The average mean temperature ranged from 53.2°F in Niceville (Okaloosa County) to 74.8°F in Fort Lauderdale International Airport (Broward County).
Temperature varied this week in citrus producing counties. A cold front early in the week dropped temperatures to the mid to high 40s in several locations. By mid-week temperatures were back to average or above. The highest maximum reading was in Clermont (Lake County), which reached 87°F. The citrus region received very little rain for the week, with only a few stations reporting any precipitation. According to the December 31, 2020, U.S. Drought Monitor, abnormally dry conditions covered parts of Marion County. The rest of the citrus growing region remained drought free.
Harvesting for the fresh market included early and mid- season non-V alencia oranges, Navels, grapefruit, and tangerines and tangelos. Processing plants were closed on several days for the holidays. Weekly early orange harvest and mandarin harvest has been slightly less than last season. Grapefruit harvest has been about the same.
Grove activities included mowing, maintenance hedging, and general grove maintenance. Irrigation was run in most areas. Field personnel have noticed several groves with new trees in the ground. Grove owners have been busy pulling out old trees and replanting. Early and midseason orange harvest is expected to pick up to full capacity now that the holidays are over.
A variety of fruits and vegetables were planted and marketed. Rain showers in the Panhandle dropped copious amounts of rain; otherwise, the rest of the state was mostly dry. Vegetable producers reported no damage to crops from frosts.
After a cold and wet week, dryer conditions allowed harvesting activities to pick back up. Cotton harvesting was nearly completed in the Panhandle. Sugarcane planting and harvesting continued in the southern part of the peninsula as producers tried to make up ground from a wet November.
Livestock and Pastures
Cattle and pasture and ranges remained in mostly fair to good condition throughout the state. Rain helped annual pastures and permanent pastures in the northern part of the Panhandle.
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