Posts Tagged: Allan Fulton
The story focused on Tom Chandler, a fourth-generation Sanger farmer who uses a pressure chamber to measure the amount of water is in the leaves of his almond trees.
"Using the pressure chambers is like having a fuel gauge for your plants," Chandler said.
For the story, Shoen talked to Allan Fulton, the UC Cooperative Extension irrigation and water resources advisor in Glenn, Colusa and Shasta counties. Fulton has experience with pressure chambers stretching back more than a decade.
"Understanding what the chamber is trying to tell you helps farmers concentrate water in areas that need it the most," Fulton said. "This means more production while using the same amount of water."
The pressure chamber results show farmers whether the crops need water, or if they can get by without water at the moment.
Ken Shackel, professor in the Department of Plant Sciences at UC Davis, learned by conducting research that dry soil doesn't mean the plant is suffering.
"You can save tons of water thanks to the chambers," Shackel said.
Fulton became interested in an agricultural career during childhood working on his grandfather's ranch in Colorado. He served as an irrigation farm advisor in Kings County for 9 years and, after a 4-year stint in private industry, joined Tehama County Cooperative Extension as the irrigation and water resources advisor 12 years ago.
Fulton publishes weekly soil moisture loss reports based on real-time regional weather conditions, helped develop the mathematical equation that allows growers to figure out how much water is needed for irrigation at a given time of year and visits farms to advise growers on their irrigation systems.
"In extension, it's a great opportunity to always be learning," he said. ". . . The biggest reward is when somebody hears of a new idea, puts it into use and is happy with the benefit from it."
At a field day in Chico, Allan Fulton shares information on the different methods available for managing tailwater runoff from irrigated fields.