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  • Author or Editor: H.R. Valenzuela x
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PRECODEPA was formed with the purpose of coordinating research and extension to improve small-farm potato production. The program involves 9 countries in North, Central America and the Caribbean with the cooperation of the International Potato Center (CIP). Research and extension work was planed based on identified bottlenecks. Work was coordinated when similar bottlenecks were identified in different regions and/or countries. The project strategies emphasized the following: training of personnel to coordinate the work between extension and research; development of integrated pest management (IPM) practices; technology generation and validation trials on farmers' fields, and market development for commercialization purposes. The success of this unique program should serve as a model for similar agricultural projects in the future.

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The sensory quality of fresh basil (cv. Sweet Italian) was evaluated to determine if compost or mineral fertilizer applications affected flavor and aroma intensity. The four treatments, arranged in a randomized complete-block design with three replications, were: compost applied at 50 t·ha–1; compost applied at 200 t·ha–1; mineral N applied at 110 kg·ha–1; and a control receiving no amendment. Leaves from the first four nodes of young shoots were used in the evaluation. Twelve trained panel members scored samples of three leaves from each treatment for aroma and flavor intensity using a linear scale, converted to a scale of 1–10 where 1 = much less intense than a reference sample (control), and 10 = much more intense than the reference. No significant difference between treatments was found in flavor intensity. Significant difference between treatments in aroma intensity was found. Aroma scores were highest in samples from the compost and synthetic fertilizer treatments, and lowest in those from the control. Scores for aroma from the compost and synthetic fertilizer treatments were similar to each other. Aroma intensity increased with increased rate of compost application. No significant correlation was found between aroma intensity and plant tissue N content, sap NO3 levels, or yield.

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To help develop fertilizer recommendations for organic vegetable production in Hawaii, the effects of organic amendments on basil yield were studied in two experiments. The treatments were synthetic nitrogen applied at 100 kg·ha–1 per crop, organic amendments applied at a rate of 8–160 MT·ha–1, and an unammended control. Each treatment was replicated four times in a RCB design. In the first experiment, chicken manure was the organic amendment at 8 MT·ha–1 with a single basil variety grown. In the second experiment, conducted at the same location immediately following the first experiment, the organic amendment was locally produced compost (0.3% N) applied at 40 and 160 MT·ha–1 with three basil varieties grown. Data taken included soil fertility levels before and after experimental completion, marketable yields recorded weekly over 5–10 weeks, and tissue N and nitrate sap analysis measured at two to three different plant growth stages. In the first experiment, treatments receiving chicken manure or synthetic N showed similar yields (256–289 g/plant), which were significantly greater than the control (197 g/plant). Tissue N levels were greatest in the synthetic fertilizer treatment (4.9%) and lowest in the control (4.5%). In the second experiment, there was a differential response by varieties to treatments with respect to yields. Yields from the compost treatments (292–700 g/plant) were equal to or greater than those receiving synthetic fertilizer (320–651 g/plant) and were generally greater than the control (324–532 g/plant). Tissue N levels were greatest in plants receiving synthetic fertilizer (4.6% to 4.7%) and lowest in the control (4.3% to 4.4%). A positive correlation was found between lab tissue N levels and nitrate sap analysis determination.

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