Chilly overnight temperatures were ideal for citrus growers in the central San Joaquin Valley, according to California Citrus Mutual.
The key to a healthy orange, lemon and tangerine crop is cold, but not too cold, citrus growers say, because the colder weather helps fruit produce more sugar. Temperatures Tuesday night and Wednesday morning dipped into the low 30s and high 20s in the region, with Fresno having an overnight low of 31 degrees. In other areas, the lows were 30 degrees in Merced, 31 in Madera, 29 in Hanford and 30 in Visalia.
California Citrus Mutual said wind machines ran periodically through the night, starting as early as 10 p.m. on Mandarin and Navel orange crops to circulate a strong inversion layer in most citrus-producing areas. In some areas, growers also used the wind machines in early morning hours to keep the fruit dry and prevent harvesting delays.
Fresno’s predicted high Wednesday is 51, with an overnight low of 34 and a high Thursday of 54. Skies ares expected to be clear until Saturday, when there will be a chance of rain.