In 1999, the National Clonal Germplasm Repository at Corvallis, Ore., was assigned to preserve the hardy Actinidia Lindl. resources for the U.S. Dept. of Agriculture, Agricultural Research Service, National Plant Germplasm System. The fuzzy kiwifruit [A. deliciosa (A. Chev) C. F. Liang et A. R. Furguson] and other less cold-hardy Actinidia species, remain at the Davis Repository. The hardy Actinidia, commonly called Chinese gooseberries or hardy kiwifruit, encompass two taxonomic sections, Leiocarpae and Maculatae, and include about 13 described species. These perennial vines are natives of Asia and have been developed and cultivated in Lushan, Wuhan, and Guilin, China; Motueka, New Zealand; Kagawa Prefecture, Japan; Vladivostok, Russia; and California, Maryland, Michigan, Minnesota, New Hampshire, and New York in the United States. Thus far, the Corvallis Repository has established representatives of six species, A. arguta (Siebold & Zucc.) Planch. Ex Miq., A. callosa Lindl., A. kolomikta (Maxim.&Rupr.) Maxim, A. melanandra Franch., A. polygama (Siebold & Zucc.) Maxim., A. purpurea Rehder and 60 cultivars. These clones will be preserved as potted plants under screen. They will also be fruited and evaluated as trellised plants in the field. The repository plans to expand the species diversity of the collections. Plant requests for dormant scionwood or spring softwood cuttings are available by contacting the Corvallis Repository Curator.
Robert B. Gravani, Anusuya Rangarajan and Elizabeth Bihn
The 1998 Fresh Trends Survey, conducted by “The Packer,” indicated that about 60% of consumers are more concerned today, than 1 year ago, about Salmonella, E. coli 0157:H7, and other bacteria on fresh produce. Since 1987, the number of produce-associated outbreaks has doubled, affecting twice as many people, and involving a variety of fruits and vegetables. Three quarters of these outbreaks (75%) were associated with domestically grown produce. In recent months, as several large grocery chains have informed their produce suppliers that growers must have a certified plan for the farm that focuses on reducing risks for microbial contamination, to continue supplying fruits and vegetables. These actions have caused extreme concern among fruit and vegetable producers. A comprehensive educational curriculum has been developed for growers and shippers focused on recommended “Good Agricultural Practices.” This effort is the result of an extensive collaborative project, involving researchers, extension educators, and grower organizations nationwide. The curriculum sections include the history of foodborne illness associated with produce, the basic principles of food microbiology, recommended good agricultural practices to reduce risks of contamination due to irrigation water, wild and domestic animals, manure, and farm workers hygiene, resources for training employees, farm assessment worksheets, and other information resources. These educational materials and visuals will be made available on CD-ROM in the near future.
Robert E. Call
The San Pedro River has been impacted by continued growth of Fort Huachuca Military Base. The San Pedro River, a riparian-migratory area, has had continuous water flow but now has intermittent water flow. The cause is cones of depression in the aquifer due to domestic well pumping. The aquifer is recharge with water from the river. Cooperative Extension has implemented Resource Conservation Audits for landowners in the lower San Pedro Valley. Also, outdoor classrooms are being constructed at three schools to educate children and community members. The goal of these programs is to educate landowners on water conservation through the use of native and adapted drought-tolerant plants, xeriscaping, irrigation efficiency, water harvesting, soil erosion, and composting. Site visits help landowners identify opportunities to reduce water use. Research-based informational brochures have been produced so landowners can plan and implement water-saving techniques on their properties. This program has been implemented using six members of the Border Volunteer Corp., part of Americorp program.
Timothy J Ng
Crop Genetics Cooperatives tend to be grassroots organizations comprised of individuals with interests in the genetics and/or breeding of a specific crop plant species, genus, or family. Activities of Genetic Cooperative often involve publishing informal research reports, compiling linkage maps, and serving as a repository for monogenic variants in the crop(s) of interest. However, information circulation is often limited to the Cooperative's membership since these organizations are rarely affiliated officially with a specific institution. Fortunately, the rapidly increasing capabilities of the World Wide Web (WWW) now allow Genetics Cooperatives to expand their outreach and provide information to anyone with Internet access. The features of WWW also allow frequent updating of information as necessary for items such as genetic maps and gene collections. The Cucurbit Genetics Cooperative (CGC) is typical of many of these organizations, and CGC is in the process of archiving back issues of the CGC Annual Report on WWW while providing current gene listings and mutant collection information to the scientific community. In addition, software such as databases and programs for analyzing genetic studies are available for downloading, and links are provided to genetic resources at other locations around the world. The process and progress of setting up the CGC website will be described, as well as plans for the future.
Warren Roberts, Jonathan Edelson, Benny Bruton, Jim Shrefler and Merritt Taylor
Plots were established at the Lane Agricultural Center in Lane, Okla., in 2003 for the purpose of conducting research in certified organic vegetable production. A field was selected that had been in pine timber since 1985. The field was cleared, plowed, disked, and land-planed. To establish a baseline for future reference, soil samples were collected on a 30 × 30 ft grid. Lime was added to adjust the pH. Poultry litter was added to the field as a fertilizer, and was incorporated by disking. Turnips were grown as a cover crop during the winter of 2003–04. In Spring 2004, the field was divided into four equal sections, which were planted with either tomatoes, sweet corn, watermelons, or southern peas. Tomatoes were planted using both determinate and indeterminate types. Plants were selected based on reported properties of interest to organic growers, such as disease resistance, pest resistance, or heat-set capabilities. The cultivars with greatest yield were Sunny, Solar Set, Classica, Sun Leaper, and Mountain Fresh. Visual disease ratings were taken throughout the season. Copper sulfate was used as a fungicide. The cultivars with the lowest disease ratings were Amelia, Peron, Celebrity, Florida 91, and Mountain Fresh. The major insect pest throughout the season was aphids. Aphid counts reached 6.9 aphids per leaf on 11 June. Two applications of AzaDirect, a neem extract, reduced aphid populations to 1.0 aphid per leaf on 17 June, 0.1 aphid per leaf on 25 June, and 0 aphids on 9 July.
Andrea K. Dravigne, Tina M. Waliczek, Jayne M. Zajicek and R. Daniel Lineberger
The purpose of this study was to determine the effect of the presence of live interior plants or window views of exterior green spaces on employee job satisfaction. A survey was administered through an online database. The survey included questions regarding physical work environment, the presence or absence of live interior plants, windows, exterior green spaces, environmental preferences, job satisfaction, and demographical information. About 600 office workers from Texas and the Midwest responded to the on-line workplace environment survey. Data were analyzed to compare levels of job satisfaction of employees that worked in office spaces that included live interior plants or window views of exterior green spaces and employees that worked in office environments without live plants or window views. Demographic information collected allowed controlling for salary, occupational level, educational level, age group, gender, and ethnicity. This research data can be particularly useful in urban planning, commercial property design and to encourage the incorporation of plants and green spaces in interior and exterior development projects.
Carl J. Rosen, Thomas R. Halbach and Bert T. Swanson
Composting of municipal solid waste (MSW) has received renewed attention as a result of increasing waste disposal costs and the environmental concerns associated with using landfills. Sixteen MSW composting facilities are currently operating in the United States, with many more in the advanced stages of planning. A targeted end use of the compost is for horticultural crop production. At the present time, quality standards for MSW composts are lacking and need to be established. Elevated heavy metal concentrations in MSW compost have been reported; however, through proper sorting and recycling prior to composting, contamination by heavy metals can be reduced. Guidelines for safe metal concentrations and fecal pathogens in compost, based on sewage sludge research, are presented. The compost has been shown to be useful in horticultural crop production by improving soil physical properties, such as lowering bulk density and increasing water-holding capacity. The compost can supply essential nutrients to a limited extent; however, supplemental fertilizer, particularly N, is usually required. The compost has been used successfully as a sphagnum peat substitute for container media and as a seedbed for turf production. High soluble salts and B, often leading to phytotoxicity, are problems associated with the use of MSW compost. The primary limiting factor for the general use of MSW compost in horticultural crop production at present is the lack of consistent, high-quality compost.
Justin R. Morris
on mechanization in the vineyard to ensure market competition. Research has been conducted by the Enology and Viticulture Program, University of Arkansas, Fayetteville, since 1966 on postharvest handling, adapting harvesters to different trellises
Alireza Talaie*, Ali Gharaghani and Mohammad Ali Asgari
In this research the effect of four clonal rootstocks (B9, M9, M26, and MM106) on growth characteristics, flowering and fruiting, and fruit quality and quantity of `Golden Smoothee' apple (Malus × domestica Borkh.) were studied during 2001 and 2003. Trees were 8 years old at the beginning of study. Experiments were planned in randomized complete-block design with four treatments (four rootstocks) and four replications. Rootstocks had significant effects on all growth characteristics. The highest tree height, shoot growth, and tree cross-sectional area were found on MM106; with B9 was the least and M9 and M26 were intermediate. The effect of year, and interaction of year on rootstocks were nonsignificant. Rootstock has highly affected flowering and fruiting characteristics. The highest flowering efficiency related to M9 and B9. The highest primary and secondary fruit set and fruit set efficiency found with M9 and M26. The highest preharvest fruit abscission observed with M26. The M9 had the least preharvest fruit abscission. Yield of M9 was the highest and B9 was the least. The M9 has the most yield efficiency and MM106 had the least. Effect of year was significant in many characteristics related to flowering and fruiting. Generally, trees had better conditions in first year. Among fruit quantitative treatments, rootstock only affected fruit weight significantly. Fruit harvested from B9 had the least weight and other rootstocks had similar fruit weight. Generally rootstock had no noticeable effect on fruit quantity and quality.
C.B. Watkins, J.E. Manzano-Mendez, J.F. Nock, J. Zhang and K.E. Maloney
The tolerances of strawberry fruit to postharvest CO2 treatments is an important factor in assessing their potential for extended storage and marketing, but little information on variation among cultivars is available. We have assessed differences in responses of seven strawberry cultivars (`Annapolis', `Earliglow', `Kent', `Honeoye', `Cavendish', `Jewel', and `Governor Simcoe') to high-CO2 atmospheres. Fruit were harvested at the orange or white tip stage of ripeness, kept in air, or 20% CO2 (in air), and sampled after 1, 2, or 7 days for analysis of firmness, color, and volatile concentrations. Berries from each cultivar were collected on three separate harvest dates. Flesh firmness measurements of all cultivars tested were higher when treated with high CO2, but the degree of firming was affected by cultivar and assessment time. For example, firmness of `Annapolis', `Earliglow', `Honeoye', and `Jewel' was consistently enhanced by CO2, compared with air, during storage. In contrast, firmness of `Kent' was not affected by treatment after 1 day of storage and benefits were relatively slight at each subsequent removal. Red color development of the fruits was affected by cultivar and treatment period, but not by CO2 treatment. Volatile accumulation varied greatly among cultivars. `Annapolis' for example, appears very tolerant of high-CO2 treatment levels as indicated by low accumulations of ethanol, acetaldehyde, and ethyl acetate in the fruit. In contrast, `Kent' and `Governor Simcoe' accumulated large amounts of these compounds. This study indicates that differences in cultivar responses to CO2 should be considered by growers planning to store fruit under these conditions to extend marketing options. Research supported in part by the North American Strawberry Growers Association.