See a Bounty of San Joaquin Valley Crops on Farm Visits During Central Valley Tour
Act now, our March 14-16 water tour is almost sold out!
The San Joaquin Valley, known as the nation’s breadbasket, is one of the nation’s most productive agricultural regions.
During our three-day Central Valley Tour, March 14-16, you will meet farmers who will explain how they prepare the fields, irrigate their crops and harvest the produce that helps feed the world. We also will drive through hundreds of miles of farmland and visit the rivers, dams, reservoirs and groundwater wells that provide the water.
Farmers also will talk about how the historic drought that ended last year impacted their operations and groundwater use. We’ll find out how they are faring with this year’s dry weather so far. They also will discuss strategies and technologies to reduce water use, increase water efficiency and prevent water loss.
On the west side of the valley, we will see many row crops. Lettuce will be abundant as this area is a leading producer of the nation’s head lettuce. Iceberg is the most common varietal, but red leaf, green leaf, romaine and butter lettuce also sit atop the fields. Tomato seedlings are being transplanted, garlic shoots are emerging and spring wheat is developing. Broccoli and asparagus harvests are right around the corner.
The east side of the valley is characterized more by orchards. Fruit tree bloom is underway, approaching the time of year when they “leaf-out” and bare branches begin to fill. Blossoming fruit will include peaches, plums, nectarines, apricots, pluots, cherries and avocados. During the tour we will visit a sprawling grove of navel oranges, Valencia oranges, tangerines and mandarins.
Throughout the valley, table grapes, wine grapes and raisin grapes are beginning to awaken from winter, many of which are now on drip irrigation. Over the years many valley farmers have shifted from row crops to permanent crops, including nut trees such as almonds, pistachios, walnuts and pecans. We will learn about the water needs and irrigation practices for these important tree crops.
Register here for this educational – and fun – tour. For an additional fee, you can receive continuing education credits for the tour.