Tuesday, December 05, 2006

The Central Coast

Central Coast
The Central Coast extends from the San Francisco Bay area Contra Costa County south to the mountain ranges of Santa Barbara County. The climate in this area is influenced by the Pacific Ocean. Salinas, which is about 10 miles from the ocean in Monterey County, has an average January temperature of 50ºF and an average temperature of 73.9ºF in September. Annual precipitation in Salinas averages 13.7 inches. The region generally has a mild climate with cool summers on the coast, where fog is common, and warm summers in the interior, but not as warm as the Sacramento Valley. Although frosts are infrequent in the winters near San Francisco, low-lying areas in the interior of this region can have temperatures below freezing. Winter protection and site selection can be critical factors in some locations in this region. The main temperate fruit and nut crops grown commercially in this area are almond, apple, apricot, cherry, pear, plum, prune, olive, and English and black walnut. It is also a major wine grape, and berry production area.

From a University of California Davis report, "California Climate Zones for Growing Temperate Tree Fruits and Nuts"