Search Results

You are looking at 1 - 6 of 6 items for :

  • Author or Editor: Carl E. Motsenbocker x
  • HortTechnology x
Clear All Modify Search

Triploid watermelon (Citrullus lanatus), commonly called seedless watermelon, is increasing in popularity and market share. The optimum in-row spacing of triploid watermelon has not been studied previously. Triploid watermelon `Crimson Jewel' and `Honeyheart' were grown with drip-irrigation and black plastic mulch at 1-, 2-, 4-, 6-, and 8-ft (0.3-, 0.6-, 1.2-, 1.8-, and 2.4-m) in-row spacings in 1996 and 2-, 3-, 4-, 5-, 6-, 7-, and 8-ft. (0.6-, 0.9-, 1.2-, 1.5-, 1.8-, 2.1-, and 2.4-m) spacings in 1997 to determine the effect of in-row plant spacing on fruit yield. Marketable yield of `Crimson Jewel' was not affected by in-row spacing while narrower in-row spacing resulted in greater `Honeyheart' yield both years. For both cultivars, narrower spacing resulted in the highest number of fruit per acre, but primarily more extrasmall and small fruit. Fruit number per plant, fruit weight per plant, and individual fruit weight were higher at wider spacings, and yield per acre was lower. The data suggest that triploid watermelon yield, fruit weight and number can be adjusted by in-row spacing. Narrower in-row spacing can maximize yields, depending on the specific grower's cultural practices. In wider in-row spacings, the yield of medium and large fruit is maintained with a subsequent decrease in extra small and small fruit. Gross returns per acre were only different for farmers' market prices, not wholesale, and net returns were not significantly influenced by in-row spacing.

Full access

The first four chapters of a hands-on gardening curriculum (Junior Master Gardener Handbook Level One) were introduced into three East Baton Rouge Parish (Louisiana) elementary schools in the fall semester of 2002 as an informal education program conducted by East Baton Rouge Parish Master Gardener volunteers and Louisiana State University students. The curriculum took place once per week for 2 hours during regular school hours. Science achievement tests, developed at Texas A&M University specifically for the Junior Master Gardener program, were given before and after the students participated in the gardening activities to determine whether or not the activities helped improve achievement scores. Science achievement was significantly different (P ≤ 0.0167) between the experimental classes' pretest and posttest scores, while no significant difference was found between the pretest and posttest scores of the control classes. No significant difference was found between the experimental and control classes due to treatment. Several variables may have affected the outcome of the study, but the results show once weekly use of gardening activities and hands-on classroom activities help improve science achievement test scores.

Full access

Plasticulture has been successfully used to enhance growth and yield of horticultural crops, and also for season extension in cooler climates. The effect of three plastic mulches (silver on black, photoselective thermal green, and black) in combination with spunbonded polyester rowcover (0.9 oz/yard2) on spring-planted watermelon (Citrullus lanatus) production was investigated. Two red-fleshed cultivars [Sangria (seeded) and Crimson Jewel (triploid)] were used. Plastic mulches increased early and total marketable yield in comparison with bare ground for both cultivars, but net benefit increased in ‘Crimson Jewel’ only. In contrast, yield and net benefit were the same among plastic mulches. Rowcover increased soil and air temperature, with the effect being greatest at lower ambient temperatures. During a near-freeze event, air temperature under the rowcover was about 7.2 °F higher than without a rowcover. Rowcover increased early and total marketable yield, but fruit weight decreased in both cultivars. Yield distribution into three fruit size categories was inconsistent between the cultivars. In ‘Sangria’, the large fruit category had the highest yield proportion for all treatments. In contrast, the highest yield proportion of ‘Crimson Jewel’, with exception of mulch without rowcover, corresponded to small fruit. Rowcover increased gross income at wholesale prices, but net benefit was not different from without rowcover. Protection of high-value plants, such as triploid watermelon, against light freezes, however, may still justify the use of rowcover in early plantings.

Full access

This is a horticulture case study of the export market for melons (Cucumis melo) from Central America to the United States. Melons have provided growers an excellent production and marketing opportunity since the early 1980s. “Off-season” shipments have changed from a consumer novelty to a commodity. The case documents how this producer entered the industry and became a dominant firm using a cost leadership strategy that included adopting advanced production technology and generating large sales volume to take advantage of its opportunity. As the product moved through the cycle from new product to mature market, there were changes in behavior by competing firms, a slowdown in growth of the markets, and reduced profits. Other management practices such as creating profit centers, using employee incentives at all levels, and outsourcing transportation and brokerage services were used to supplement the cost leader strategy. The development of the market and of the firm is documented, providing the basis for discussion of management and marketing issues in courses at the university level in horticulture and agribusiness.

Full access

Field studies were conducted in 1991 and 1992 to evaluate the effect of in-row spacing on machine-harvested jalapeno pepper (Capsicum annuum L.) yield and plant characteristics. In 1991, `TAM Mild Jalapeno-1' (TAMJ1) and `Jalapeno-M' (JM) were planted at 4-, 8-, 12-, and 16-inch (10-, 20-, 30-, 40-cm) in-row spacings and, in 1992, TAMJ1 was planted at 3-, 6-, 9-, and 12-inch (7.5-, 15-, 22.5-, 30-cm) spacings. Total marketable yield increased linearly for JM (in 1991), while the yield response was quadratic for TAMJ1 in 1992 with narrower in-row spacing. Total marketable yield for JM (1991) and TAMJ1 (1992) was highest for the narrowest spacing, 4 and 3 inches, respectively. Red fruit yield of both cultivars in 1991 increased linearly with narrower spacing. In 1992 there were no differences in red fruit yield among in-row spacings. Plants lodged more at wider spacings. In-row spacings as narrow as 4 inches may increase marketable yield of machine-harvested jalapeno pepper.

Full access

Forty-five cultivars of lettuce (Lactuca sativa) were field-grown using best management practices at the Louisiana State University Agricultural Center (LSU AgCenter) Botanic Gardens in Baton Rouge during the Fall 2011 and Fall 2012 seasons. Recommended cultivars were selected for commercial production in Louisiana based on fresh weight and lettuce size (width and height). Nitrate (NO3 ) concentration was analyzed for each cultivar, as lettuces are known to accumulate and concentrate NO3 , and were then compared with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) oral reference dose (RfD—the EPA’s maximum acceptable oral dose of a toxic substance) of 1.6 mg NO3-nitrogen (N) per kilogram body weight per day. Recommended butterhead cultivars were Caliente and Harmony (21.6 and 13.9 ppm NO3 , respectively); recommended green-leaf cultivars were Salad Bowl and Tango (10.6 and 4.6 ppm NO3 , respectively); recommended red-leaf cultivars were Red Salad Bowl, Red Sails, and New Red Fire (15.2, 15.4, and 24.0 ppm NO3 , respectively). The only recommended romaine cultivar was Green Towers (11.2 ppm NO3 ), and recommended crisphead cultivars included Raider and Ithaca (17.6 and 14.9 ppm NO3 , respectively). Of the highest yielding cultivars, New Red Fire accumulated the greatest NO3 concentration: 24.0 ppm in both years 1 and 2. The NO3 concentration is less than the levels of concern for both men and women 20 to 74 years old, 3.9% of the RfD for men and 4.59% of the RfD for women.

Open Access