San Diego County Avocado Grower Struggles to Keep Crops Alive With Unstable Weather

Brown leaves, dried branches and barely any avocados are what’s left on Stewart’s Avocado Farms in Fallbrook. It’s a different scene from what was there last year. Stewart’s 2023 crop that’ll be harvested in 2024 is almost non-existent due to the colder weather throughout San Diego County. It’s a big change from what he’s been used to.

WaterSmart Moves Pay Off for Fallbrook Avocado Farm

Josh Kane didn’t know a lot about avocado farming 10 years ago, but he does now.

In 2001, Kane’s mother bought a 60-acre avocado farm, the Rice Canyon Ranch, in Fallbrook, thinking it would be a good investment. But, some not-so-good advice, and the 2014 drought, had the business in a nosedive. Rice Canyon took a long-term investment perspective and invested in innovative measures, including tree stumping and grafting. Those strategies, along with smart irrigation, helped turn the farm around.