Growers scrambling to remove citrus from trees

January 15, 2013 12:00:00 AM PST
While freezing temperatures continue in the Central Valley, Fresno County ag inspectors have seen little freeze related damage in samplings taken from county orchards. Meanwhile, efforts to protect the crops and get them off the trees continue.

At a mandarin orchard near Kingsburg Monday night, Ray Enns ran a micro irrigation system. To this point, he feels like his efforts have been successful. "So far, I think we've done a good job of protecting the fruit. I don't see any severe damage to it at this time. It's time to get them off before any damage does occur," said Enns.

Ag inspectors have been taking samples from orchards during the freeze. On Monday, they cut fruit that was picked Saturday. They found a little evidence of freeze damage, but said it was nothing to be alarmed about? yet. "If there's any damage, it will show up Thursday and that will be from Monday's samples. We'll have citrus from Friday, Saturday, Sunday, and Monday, so four days. It will be a cumulative effect," said Fred Rinder, Fresno County's Deputy Agriculture Commissioner.