(Nov. 13) Thunderstorms that wreaked havoc on the Los Angeles area Nov. 12 brought welcome precipitation to the desert growing areas east of the city.

Some motorists were trapped in their cars for hours in cities like Compton, just south of Los Angeles, where rain fell at a rate of more than 2 inches an hour.

But Compton-based Ralphs Grocery Co. reported no problems as a result of the freak storm, which was accompanied by wind, thunder, lightning and hail.

In parts of the Coachella Valley, 100 miles east of Los Angeles, more than an inch of rain fell during a 10-hour period. The last time that happened, according to television news reports, was 1997, said John Burton, sales manager at Peter Rabbit Farms, Coachella.

Burton said there was no apparent crop damage, but harvesting of bell peppers was delayed for a couple of days. He expected harvesting to resume Nov. 14.

The rain was not a downpour, but “a medium drizzle” that fell throughout the day, he said. “It’s going to bring on the beauty of all the leaf crops.”

Similarly, at Prime Time International, Coachella, Mark Nickerson, managing partner, said there were no floods or washouts.

“The desert is so dry, most of it soaked right into the ground,” he said. “It probably did more good than harm.”

Prime Time has a number of crops in the ground at this time including strawberries, artichokes, cauliflower, lettuce, green beans and bell peppers. By Nov. 13, Nickerson said, skies were blue and sunny and the crops were drying out. He did not expect any decay problems.

“Things aren’t going to stay wet long,” he said.