The Week in Florida Agriculture
November 10-16, 2008
Peanut digging is 98 percent complete, compared with 96 percent this time last year and equal to the five-year average. Early frost damaged about 500 acres of peas. Snap beans and mustard greens are doing well and are being harvested. Cabbage planting is 50 percent complete. Hay is being harvested. Cotton, soybean and hay harvests are nearly finished. Tomatoes are being irrigated. Sugarcane harvest is under way. Crop Production Cotton: As of November 1, 2008, yield is forecast at 812 pounds per acre, up 125 pounds or 18 percent from last year. The forecast for total harvested is 65,000 acres. Cotton harvesting began in early October for most. As of October 31, just over half of the crop had been picked. Peanuts: Yield is forecast at 3,400 pounds per acre, unchanged from last month and up 700 pounds, or 26 percent, from last year. Acres harvested are forecast at 133,000, up 12 percent from last year. As of November 1, only 10 percent of peanuts remained to be harvested. Sugar: Yield for sugar and seed is estimated at 39.0 tons per acre, unchanged from last month. Last year yield averaged 36.1 tons per acre. Production of sugar and seed is forecast at 15,600,000 tons, up 10 percent from last year. Acreage to be harvested is set at 400,000 acres, up 7,000 acres from last year. Sugar: Yield for sugar and seed is estimated at 39.0 tons per acre, unchanged from last month. Last year yield averaged 36.1 tons per acre. Production of sugar and seed is forecast at 15,600,000 tons, up 10 percent from last year. Acreage to be harvested is set at 400,000 acres, up 7,000 acres from last year. Seafood: Wholesalers are reporting a good supply of mullet and mullet roe. Vegetables: Light volumes of sweet corn and radishes are moving through the market. Avocados, cucumbers, eggplant, okra, peppers, squash and tomatoes are also being marketed. Livestock and Pastures: In the Panhandle and northern areas grass growth has slowed significantly and is about done for the season. Winter grains for forage have been slowed by cool temperatures and dry soils. Pasture condition is fair to good. In the central and southern peninsula area, grass growth in pastures is declining and the final cuttings of hay are nearly complete. Some supplemental feeding began on livestock, especially equine. The cattle condition statewide is mostly fair to good. Weight gains on calves have been below average due to poor protein value in grass and hay. Some producers are removing calves from pastures earlier than normal due to inadequate hay and forage. Citrus: Areas along the west coast and central citrus growing region had record-high temperatures mid-week before dropping down to some of the coolest morning temperatures of the season on Sunday. Apopka and Lake Alfred had three quarters of an inch of rainfall for the week. Supplemental sprays and fertilizers are being applied. Windy conditions and infrequent rainfall on the east coast dehydrated some trees, causing growers to run irrigation on a recurrent basis. Other grove activity include limited mowing and general maintenance. Harvesting is increasing with early oranges being picked for processing. Some fruit is being sent from packing houses to processing plants to make juice. The fresh market for Navel oranges and grapefruit has been limited but fairly consistent the past several weeks. Fallglo tangerine harvest is almost over for the season and is being replaced by the early-variety Sunburst tangerines.