Dry weather speeds Florida vegetable harvest

Significant showers fell over some Florida Panhandle and Big Bend areas during the week ending Dec. 2. Most rain was received early to mid-week.

Rainfall ranged from traces over most central and southern Peninsula areas to nearly two inches in Daytona Beach. Some Panhandle localities received over one inch with an unofficial report of seven inches in a localized area. Several stations reported no rain during the week.

Temperatures at the major stations averaged one to seven degrees above normal. Daytime highs were in the 60s, 70s, and 80s. Nighttime lows were in the 40s, 50s, 60s, and 70s.

Harvest of peanuts for nuts was nearly finished. Cotton picking continued with only a few acres left. In Washington County, peanut harvest is complete and cotton harvest is nearing the end.

Harvest of locally grown pecans was active in the tri-county area around Starke.

Soil moisture was rated short to adequate in most areas, except for short soil moisture reported for the Big Bend area.

Counties reporting spots with very short soil moisture included Jackson, Washington, Marion, Brevard, Lake, Hernando, Polk, De Soto, Lee, Pasco, and Jefferson. Counties reporting spots with surplus soil moisture included Jackson and Holmes.

Growers continued to plant, harvest, and irrigate vegetable crops. Harvest of the small fall crop of watermelons in the Ft. Myers area, and picking of yellow-type Roma and globe tomatoes in the Quincy area was virtually finished.

Planting remained on schedule in the central and southern Peninsula with potato planting very active around Immokalee.

Around Palatka, cabbage transplanting continued while squash harvest wound down. Cabbage heads are finally gaining size. Growers replanted some cabbage fields earlier due to problems with heading.

Strawberries were in good condition around Plant City and Dover with picking increasing very slowly. Warm temperatures are hindering strawberry development.

Light harvesting of cucumbers and eggplant began around Pompano.

Other vegetables marketed during the week included snap beans, sweet corn, cucumbers, eggplant, escarole, endive, lettuce, okra, peppers, radishes, squash, strawberries, and tomatoes.

Hide comments


  • Allowed HTML tags: <em> <strong> <blockquote> <br> <p>

Plain text

  • No HTML tags allowed.
  • Web page addresses and e-mail addresses turn into links automatically.
  • Lines and paragraphs break automatically.