Almond Grove

On a business trip last week, I drove from Los Angeles to Bakersfield, Tulare and Visalia, in the San Joaquin along Highway 99. This is the interior farm belt of central California where land is cheaper and the climate is more varied than the coast. Your two buck chucks from Trader Joe’s is grown here, instead of the pricey coastal wineries of Santa Inez or Santa Barbara. Most tourists enjoy the beauty of California coast by taking the 101 (aka Pacific Coast Highway), or the more direct north/south interstate 5, and probably don’t know much about highway 99. This is the less glamorous side of California but no less important. In recent years, because of the ban on pistachio from Iran, more farm land in the San Joaquin Valley has multiplied and transformed into pistachio and almonds groves.

While driving a long highway 99, I saw a field of almond trees still blooming so I screeched into a stop in Pixley and snapped these photos.

The sky on that day was stormy and I modified this photo to highlight the unusual sky using the Hallow Black preset by Bryan Wheeler. This is a free preset for LightRoom from Adobe, so check it out at

Almond grove in the San Joaquin Valley, in Pixley along Highway 99.

Here’s another view of the almond grove, modified to look like a child’s painting. Which one do you prefer?

Almond grove in Pixley, San Joaquin Valley along Highway 99.


About knottyewe

Blogging about knitting, making yarn, and making socks.
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4 Responses to Almond Grove

  1. Definitely the first one. I love how the color turned out.
    Greetings from north of the Arctic Circle.

  2. I think I like the second one better! Of course, the first one reminds me of winter, and I’m over the snow! Great shot.

  3. Trang French says:

    I love the first picture Loan, it is so pretty that I now want to take a field trip to the San Joaquin Valley. Here in San Diego, It has been such a warm winter that all my fruit trees are blooming too

  4. knottyewe says:

    Thanks for your comments. The site of thousands acres of almond trees blooming as far as the eyes can see is impressive. It is definitely worth a visit to the central valley so see where the nuts originated. But expect limited options for dining, entertainment, and lodging as this is the farm belt after all. I was here at the World Agricultural Expo last week and the folks here seem to be more impressed with the biggest tractor than the fanciest restaurant.

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