Economics Department

Davis County                                                       AG/Econ/county - 2005-09
E. Bruce Godfrey, Extension Specialist
Shawn Olsen, Davis County Agent
Dale Baker and Spencer Parkinson,
        Research Assistants

Area:  630 square miles  (403,200 acres)

Population:  255,597  (U.S. Census Bureau Estimate, 2003)

County Seat:  Farmington

     Davis County is the smallest county in Utah.  It is located in the northern part of the state and borders the Great Salt Lake.

Land Ownership      The land ownership within the county is divided as follows:

Water coverage:   52%
Private:   25%
State:   12%
Federal:   11%
Source:  ( Utah County FAct Book, 2002)

     The majority of the federally-owned ground, about 85%, is under the jurisdiction of the U.S. Forest Service (USFS). The remaining federal ground is controlled by Bureau of Land Management (BLM) and the military.  The state owned ground is primarily part of Utah state parks and recreational areas. Portions of the state owned land are wildlife preserves with a small portion under the jurisdiction of the Utah School
and Institutional Trust Land Administration (SITLA).  The private ground is primarily farm ground and grazing areas.

     The 2002 Census of Agriculture indicated that there were 65,857 acres in farms or ranches in the county with an average size of 113 acres and an average value of $3,802 per acre. The county had 26,632 acres in cropland of which 17,879 were harvested and 21,275 acres were irrigated.
The value of livestock and crops produced was listed at $30,300,000.

Agricultural Snapshot
     In the 2003 county production statistics (2004 Utah Agricultural Statistics), the county ranked second in the state in the production of nursery and greenhouse crops, potatoes and dry onions. It was third in spring wheat and sweet cherries and fourth in winter wheat corn for grain.
     The major crops grown in Davis County with 2004 yields and total acres harvested were:

2004 Primary Crops

Total Harvested Acres Average Yield/acre
All alfalfa hay 34,000 tons 7,000 4.9 tons
Other hay 4,200 tons 1,500 2.8 tons
Corn silage 26,000 tons 900 29 tons
Corn grain 169,000 bu. 1,000 169 bu.


82,500 bu. 800 103 bu.



3,800 94 bu.













Greenhouse and nursery crops are grown on 412 acres and had a market value of $19 million in 2002.  The major crops are potted  flowering plants,  bedding plants, and sod. Vegetables were grown on 1,726 acres and had a market value of $4 million. The major  vegetable crops were dry  onions-694 acres, sweet corn-491 acres, and pumpkins-164 acres. 

The most prevalent crop rotation that producers practice is to  leave alfalfa in for seven years, plant wheat for two years, and  then replant alfalfa. Producers typically get three to four cuttings of alfalfa each year. Another rotation is wheat, sweet corn, and then vegetables. A third common rotation is grain corn, snap beans, and then wheat. Most grain is planted in the fall of the year. About 25% of all inputs (e.g., seed, fertilizer, pesticides, etc...) are purchased locally while the remaining 75% is bought in neighboring counties). The majority of the farming and ranching in the county occurs in the Layton, Syracuse, and West Point  areas in the northern part of the county.

     The majority, about 65% of the irrigation water available in Davis County, is from the Weber River and the Echo and Rockport reservoirs. The other 35% is drawn from local mountain streams.

Growing Season
     The growing season in Davis County is one of the longest in Utah.  It averages about five and a half months.

     Following are some of the details on climatology in three areas of Davis County.

Climate locations Annual precip.  Last Spring freeze First Fall freeze

Freeze-free period

Davis Climate Characteristics
Antelope     Island


15.48  in



 May 4


 Oct. 5


 155 days


 Bountiful-Val Verda


23.07 in


 April 18


 Oct. 5


 155 days


 Farmington USU Field Station



 May 2




 162 days



     The major classes of livestock produced in the county along with their associated inventories as of January 2004 were:

Livestock Type Number of Head
All Cattle & Calves   9,000
Beef Cows   5,000
Milk Cows      500
Sheep & Lambs      800


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