Tree density, grove orientation and spacing are critical to ensure the crop makes the most of environmental conditions. Good drainage and the absence of compacted layers within the soil are essential for good rooting.
Thorough soil preparation including liming is critical prior to planting. It is important to build a strong healthy tree that reaches full production as soon as possible. Pruning is also essential to maximize light interception and to ensure a strong crop load that doesn’t over-burden the tree.
The use of fungicides and insecticides along with appropriate integrated pest management (IPM) will ensure high yields and minimize risks of aflatoxins in the nut post-harvest. Harvest management that minimizes contamination with dust or other foreign matter will also improve crop quality.
With 40 acres of fertigated and established almonds, and 40 acres of irrigated and established walnuts, the Yara Incubator Farm in Modesto, California is a center for research, solution trials and knowledge sharing.