Longreads

California avocados are, for the moment, one of America’s most popular foods. Yet some experts predict that climate change could cut California’s avocado production in half by 2050. New weather patterns will also affect the state’s other tree crops, including citrus, almonds, walnuts, and pistachios. But even if rising sea levels flood many coastal cities, many Golden State farmers still plan on growing food for a living.

At Grist, food writer Nathaneal Johnson shows how California farmers are planning ahead for climate change while balancing their immediate economic concerns. Farming is a matter of long-term planning: Just because there was a drought for a nearly six years doesn’t mean farmers can remove their thirsty nut trees and plant strawberries. Fortunately, scientists are studying crop varieties to find ones that could perform well under new weather patterns. California farmers are currently experimenting with cover crops to hold water and improve…

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