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» December 29, 2010 «
December storms have brought significant recovery to the Sierra snowpack. Measurements taken yesterday (Tuesday) show the water content of the snowpack at 198 percent of average for the date. That's a big improvement from a year ago, when the snowpack stood at 85 percent of average. But the state Department of Water Resources cautions that it's too early to conclude that the entire winter will bring above-average precipitation.
A key source of water for Southern California, the Colorado River, has also seen improved snowfall this season. The U.S. Bureau of Reclamation says its snow sensors indicate the Colorado River region has received 150 percent of average precipitation so far. The basin has experienced several years of below-average precipitation, and reservoirs along the river have dropped to low levels.
As most of us finalize our New Year's resolutions, California flower growers are already looking ahead to Valentine's Day. The California State Floral Association says growers work weeks ahead of time to make sure their flowers reach the peak of perfection by February 14th. Red roses remain the most popular flower for Valentine's Day, but the association also reports demand for other rose varieties and for bouquets containing other flowers.
With their harvest now completed, kiwifruit farmers report a larger crop that also featured strong demand. The California Kiwifruit Commission says farmers sold almost 9 million trays full of kiwifruit, about 2 million more than last year. The crop escaped most damage from frost and rain, which put growers in a strong position. Weather in other Northern Hemisphere countries hurt kiwifruit production there, increasing demand for California fruit.