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  • Author or Editor: Daniel E. Legard x
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John J. Haydu and Daniel E. Legard

The control of postharvest Botrytis fruit rot was evaluated during 1995-96, 1996-97, and 1997-98. Weekly applications of captan and thiram were examined at two or three different rates, respectively. Iprodione applications were combined with the captan and thiram treatments and applied alone for two peak bloom periods. Strawberry fruit were harvested and graded twice weekly for marketable yield and preharvest incidence of Botrytis fruit rot. For postharvest evaluations, fruit from four harvests were selected and stored at 4 °C, and Botrytis fruit rot incidence was recorded over 14 days of storage. Fungicide treatments reduced the incidence of preharvest Botrytis fruit rot and increased marketable yield. Marketable yield data were then used to extrapolate production into net economic returns per hectare. In 1995-96, net returns per hectare ranged from a low of $16,008 in the control treatment to a high of $20,728 for captan. In 1996-97, net returns ranged from a low of $3,655 per hectare for the control to a high of $17,985 for captan + iprodione. In 1997-98, net returns varied from -$641 per hectare for iprodione to a high of $24,215 for captan. Over the experiment's 3-year period, net returns averaged a low of $4,172 for iprodione alone to $19,074 for captan. The study concluded that, at roughly $1,000 per season, fungicide treatments represent a minor proportion of total costs, yet have large impacts on strawberry production profits.

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Craig K. Chandler, Daniel E. Legard and Charles A. Sims

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Craig K. Chandler, Daniel E. Legard, Timothy E. Crocker and Charles A. Sims

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Suzanne C. Stapleton, Craig K. Chandler, James F. Price, Daniel E. Legard and James C. Sumler Jr.

The use of locally grown transplants in Florida strawberry (Fragari×ananassa Duchesne) production has increased since the release of the cultivar Sweet Charlie by the University of Florida in 1992. Previous research has shown that nursery region can influence production patterns of other strawberry cultivars through differences in photoperiod and temperature exposure. Transplants of `Sweet Charlie' strawberry (bareroot and plug plants) from sources representing northern (Canada, Massachusetts, Oregon), southern (Alabama, Florida) and mid latitude (North Carolina) transplant production regions were compared for plant vigor, production, and pest incidence at Dover, Fla. in 1995-96 and 1996-97. Total fruit production was not significantly different forplants among the plant source regions in 1995-96, but total yield from southern source plants in 1996-97 was significantly lower than northern and mid latitude plant sources. Monthly production of marketable fruits varied among the three plant source regions in December, January, and February, during which time market prices fell 46% in 1995-96 and 56% in 1996-97. Plants from northern and mid latitude sources produced significantly greater fruit yield in December than plants from southern sources. Differences among plant sources were detected for early flowering, initial crown size, incidence of foliar disease, arthropod pests, mortality, and fruit weight. Geographic location of strawberry transplant sources influenced fruiting patterns and other components that may affect profitability of `Sweet Charlie' strawberry production in west central Florida.

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John R. Duval, Craig K. Chandler, Daniel E. Legard and Peter Hicklenton

Transplant quality can have a major effect on the productivity of many crops. Bare-root, green-top transplants for Florida winter strawberry (Fragaria ×ananassa) production are produced mainly in highlatitude (>42° N) nurseries. Mechanical digging machines are used to remove plants from the soil at these nurseries before transport to production fields in Florida. In the course of this operation, crowns, petioles, and leaves may be crushed and broken. Machine and hand-dug bare-root transplants of `Camarosa' and `Sweet Charlie' were obtained from a Nova Scotia, Canada nursery, planted at the Gulf Coast Research and Education Center, Dover, Fla. field facility on 2 Nov. 1999 and 10 Oct. 2000, and grown using standard annual-hill production practices. Plots were harvested twice weekly beginning 5 Jan. 2000 and 15 Dec. 2000. Hand-dug transplants produced significantly higher monetary returns both seasons. Therefore, fruit producers may consider paying the higher cost associated with changes in harvesting and packing operations needed to reduce damage to transplants.

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Suzanne W. Cady, Craig K. Chandler, Daniel E. Legard, Jim F. Price and Jim C. Sumler Jr.

The objective of this study was to compare plant health and growth in Florida fruiting fields of `Sweet Charlie' plants from 10 different plant sources. Bare-root plants from Ontario, Nova Scotia, Massachusetts, Oregon, North Carolina, Alabama, and Florida and plug plants from North Carolina and Florida were compared in a RCBD of four replicates. Plants were rated for vigor, production, diseases, and pests throughout the 1995-96 season. Crown size of transplants ranged from 7 to 12 mm. Plants from northern sources exhibited angular leaf spot (Xanthomonas fragariae) and gnomonia (Gnomonia spp.) while southern-raised plants were infected with phomopsis (Phomopsis obscurans) and anthracnose (Colletoctrichum spp.). Initial ratings confirm the potential for aphids and two-spotted spider mites (Tetranychus urticae) to be introduced on transplants. Plants from northern origins flowered 10-14 days earlier than plants produced in southern regions. Total season marketable fruit production was not statistically different among the eight bare-root treatments. Monthly fruit production was significantly different among treatments for all months except February. Performance of plug plants compared to bare-root plants of the same geographic origin were inconsistent. Initial crown size, average berry size, and cull fruit production were significantly different among the plant sources. In summary, clear differences in foliar diseases and monthly fruit production were strongly associated with transplant source. A strawberry farmer may maintain more stable production throughout the year by using transplants from several geographic origins.

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Craig K. Chandler, Daniel E. Legard, Chang-Lin Xiao and James C. Mertely

On standard two-row black polyethylene covered beds, `Camarosa', `Rosa Linda', and `Sweet Charlie' strawberry plants were grown at 23, 31, 38, or 46 cm within-row spacing during the 1997–98 and 1998–99 seasons at Dover, Fla. Ripe fruit were harvested twice weekly from December through March. The first 8 weeks of harvest was considered the early period; the late period consisted of all harvests after the first 8 weeks. The effect of spacing on early marketable yield was consistent across seasons and cultivars. The 23-cm spacing resulted in the highest marketable yield per unit area, followed by the 31-, 38-, and 46-cm spacing. The percentage of fruit that were small (unmarketable) was higher at the 23-cm spacing than at the wider spacings (40% vs. 35% or 36%), but spacing did not affect the percentage of fruit that were misshapen. For the late harvest period, a spacing effect on marketable yield occurred in 1998–99, but not in 1997–98. The 23-, 31-, and 38-cm spacings in 1998–99 resulted in similar late period yields, which were 15% to 21% higher than the yield resulting from the 46-cm spacing. These results indicate that marketable yields per plant during the late period were higher at the wider spacings.