Blog Post

WSU Extension offers helpful weather updates for fruit growers

PACIFIC NORTHWEST: We’ve had record breaking cold weather in the Columbia Basin for the past several weeks. Usually with weather like this, growers’ minds are more focused on equipment repair, record keeping, finances and not as much on the weather outside in the field.

It’s still important to keep abreast of the weather as related to ag. In recent years, I’ve relied upon a local service provided by Washington State University Extension and the Decision Aid System (DAS). If you aren’t familiar with DAS, it can be used not only to monitor weather near your farm, but it also provides in-season developmental models for important pests like codling moth and powdery mildew in pome fruit and grapes, as well as fire blight in pome, among others.

My enrollment in the DAS gets me a weekly weather email from Ag Weather Net that I find really useful. It’s focused on the seven=day forecast trend, and I find it complementary to what I see on Weather Channel and other apps I have on my mobile devices. It also connects you to important weather event forecasts like the hard freeze we had last week that may have affected cherries and grapes.

Email alerts like this may help orchard management decisions on your farm. If you are not on the email list, consider it! You can email Garrit Hoogenboom to sign up.

Reporting from Richland, WA

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