Drought Hasn’t Dissuaded Almond Growers From Planting

At least 8.33 million almond trees have been sold by California nurseries since July 1, 2013, according to a USDA survey.

This figure represents a 25% increase from those sold a year earlier, the USDA-National Agricultural Statistics Service found. Of those sold since July 1, 2013, 72% were used for new plantings, 24% were used to replant an already existing almond orchard, and 4% were used to replace trees within existing orchards.

Based on a new planting average of 125 trees per acre — per the Almond Acreage Survey — almost 67,000 acres of almonds have been planted since the middle of 2013. Over 26,000 of these acres were to the variety that dominates the industry, Nonpareils.

The primary objective of the California Almond Nursery Sales Survey is to estimate future almond acres based on the number of almond trees sold for new plantings. This report summarizes data supplied by California nurseries who sold to almond growers for commercial plantings. Results from this survey will be used in conjunction with the Almond Acreage Survey to estimate the almond acres in California.

Questionnaires were mailed to all known almond nurseries in California and responses were received from 8 out of 10 operations. The nurseries were asked to report the total number of almond trees sold for commercial plantings and the total number of Nonpareil variety sold.

The nurseries were also asked to report the percent of the trees sold for new almond orchards, for replanting an existing orchard, or to replace trees within an already existing almond orchard. The totals are only for those nurseries that reported. Acres planted were calculated using the reported number of trees sold, along with the trees per acre from the Almond Acreage Survey.

Funding for the survey came from the Almond Board of California.

USDA-National Agricultural Statistics Service

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