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Rilla E.,UC Cooperative Extension UCCE | Hardesty S.D.,University of California at Davis | Getz C.,University of California at Berkeley | George H.,UCCE
California Agriculture | Year: 2011

More than 2.4 million visitors participated in agritourism at California farms and ranches in 2008. They stayed at guest ranches in the foothills, picked peaches in the Sacramento Valley, played in corn mazes up and down the state, shopped at on-farm produce stands along the coast, held weddings in fields and vineyards from coast to mountains, and experienced myriad other agriculture-related tourism activities. The UC Small Farm Program conducted the first statewide economic survey of California agritourism operators to better understand their goals, needs and economic outlook. University researchers from several other states provided input and sample data from state surveys conducted between 2000 and 2007. This information will help to target outreach and address current and emerging challenges.

Sokolow A.D.,University of California at Davis | Hammond S.V.,UC Cooperative Extension UCCE | Norton M.,UCCE | Schmidt E.E.,University of California at Davis
California Agriculture | Year: 2010

About 2.5 million agricultural acres are located adjacent or in close proximity to nonfarm residences in California, leading to widespread farm-residential conflicts. This exploratory study compared high- and low-conflict edges in four crop-growing communities in two counties. (A separate analysis of San Diego County in a sidebar compares two edge situations involving animal and nursery operations.) We present tentative generalizations about conflict variations, sources and solutions. High confliict levels were largely due to residents' unfamiliarity with agricultural activities, although conflict levels were also related to specific farming practices. We also pose questions to guide further and more systematic research on the edge issue in California agriculture.

Long R.F.,UC Cooperative Extension UCCE | Hanson B.R.,University of California at Davis | Fulton A.E.,UCCE | Weston D.P.,University of California at Berkeley
California Agriculture | Year: 2010

Irrigation tailwater can transport sediments and sediment-associated agricultural pollutants to nearby waterways. To help protect the biota of surface waters, we evaluated the use of polyacrylamide (PAM, a synthetic material that flocculates sediments when added to water), vegetated ditches and sediment traps to mitigate sediment losses from furrow-irrigated fields. In a 2-year study, liquid PAM injected into irrigation source water most effectively reduced suspended-sediment concentrations in runoff from different soil types. Dry tablet and granule PAM formulations were also effective, as long as their placement in the furrows promoted their dissolution in irrigation water. Vegetated ditches resulted in intermediate reductions in suspended sediments in tailwater. The sediment traps were limited in their effectiveness by insufficient holding time for fine-grained particulates to settle out of the runoff.

Burrack H.J.,North Carolina State University | Connell J.H.,UC Cooperative Extension UCCE | Wunderlich L.,UCCE Amador | Vossen P.M.,UCCE Sonoma | And 3 more authors.
California Agriculture | Year: 2011

The olive fruit fly was first detected in Los Angeles in 1998 and in all the olive-growing regions of California soon after. Following its initial detection, UC researchers and Cooperative Extension farm advisors, county agricultural commissioners and the California Department of Food and Agriculture Pest Detection and Emergency Project established a statewide monitoring program to determine the extent of the olive fruit fly's occurrence, track its seasonal biology and evaluate monitoring tools. Fly populations and infestations can reach high levels throughout California but tend to be lower in the San Joaquin Valley. Trap captures typically exhibit a bimodal distribution with peaks in the spring and fall. Olive infestation is related to fly densities, climate and fruit size. Gravid, mated females vary in density throughout the year but are present at some level year-round. The data is being used to develop models that will better predict when the adults are active and olives are at risk.

Standiford R.B.,University of California at Berkeley | McCreary D.,University of California at Berkeley | Barry S.,UC Cooperative Extension UCCE | Forero L.,UCCE
California Agriculture | Year: 2011

California's hardwood rangelands, an oak-dominated woodland system, cover 10 million acres. More than 80% of these lands are privately owned, with two-thirds grazed by domestic livestock. Public concerns about long-term damage to habitat in areas harvested for firewood - particularly in the northern Sacramento Valley - led to this study of resprouting, to assess long-term trends in oak cover following harvesting and the potential of sprout (coppice) management to sustain woodlands. In field surveys on 103 sample plots at 19 ranches where oak firewood was harvested, we found that 54% of all oak stumps resprouted. Stump diameter, herbicide application, overstory crown cover percentage, and slope and aspect were significant variables in models developed to assess the probability of stump sprouting. Ten-year sprout height and crown growth models were developed, and livestock grazing, residual overstory canopy, herbicide treatment and stump diameter were found to be significant variables. These models can be used to predict stand development following firewood harvest and can be integrated with forage growth, wildlife habitat and residual tree growth models.

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