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Showing posts from August, 2014

hello 2020

hello 2020 and goodbye 2019. I am so ready for a new year and a new decade. As I was reminiscing on the last decade and especially the last few years, I couldn't help but feel overwhelmed with a sense of loss and grief. The last three years we have had to say goodbye to loved one that we weren't expecting to say goodbye to. Of course, there were highs mixed in with those lows. This year, Tim and I will celebrate TEN years of marriage, we welcomed two kids over the last five years, we are finally getting settled in to our homestead in the country and professionally are accomplishing some pretty cool things.

I looked back on my Instagram top nine and was happy to see so many great memories. I love seeing so many happy moments to reflect on. I had the amazing opportunity to see and listen to President Trump as he spoke at the American Farm Bureau Annual Meeting (1). I also had the opportunity to sit down an discuss agriculture solutions with our Governor Newsom (3). This Christma…

Irrigating during harvest

In our orchards we have multiple varieties of almonds. These varieties mature and harvest at different times throughout the harvest season. We start with nonpareils, the most popular, most produced and most widely used variety. But a field of nonpareils most often has one or two other varieties that aren't ready to harvest for a couple weeks to a month later. When we flood irrigated, we weren't able to irrigate any of the orchard until the harvest was complete on the entire orchard.  If we chose to flood irrigate, the orchard rows would be too wet and the machinery would get stuck. The weeds would also start to grow in the middle of the rows, making it difficult for the machinery to pick up the almonds.

Now that we drip irrigate our fields, we are able to harvest and irrigate at the same time. The drip hose is delivering water directly to the base of the tree roots, with only a small portion of the water staying on the surface of the ground. We are able to shake o…

Sweeping and picking up almonds

It's been about 2 weeks since we started almond shaking on the farm. We gave the almonds plenty of time to dry out and get most of the moisture out.
Now, it's time to sweep them. A sweeper machine runs through the tree rows and moves the nuts into a neat row down the middle of the orchard.  First, the sweeper blows nuts from one side of the tree line to the other. Then, the sweeper drives the opposite way through the field moving the nuts into a row. These rows make it possible for the pick up machine to come through and pick up the almond piles without running them over. 


The pick up machine is pulled behind a tractor and has an almond cart behind it. When the tractor drives over the almond rows the pick up machine scoops up the almonds, leaving behind the dirt and other debris, and drops the nuts into the almond cart. When the almond cart is full of almonds, another machine called a shuttle comes behind it in the orchard.  The almond cart empties into the shuttl…