This work was conducted for evaluate the influence of clear and black polyethylene mulches, used alone or combined with floating rowcover (FRC) and plastic perforated microtunnels, on insect populations, growth and yield of muskmelon. Treatments evaluated were 1) clear plastic + FRC, 2) polyethylene perforated microtunnel, 3) clear plastic + polyethylene not perforated microtunnel, 4) black plastic + FRC, 5) clear plastic, 6) black polyethylene, 7) clear plastic + oil, and 8) bare soil. Aphids and sweetpotato whitefly adults and nymphs were completely excluded by floating rowcovers while the plots covered. The export and national quality fruit yield was major in the mulched beds in relation to control. Clear polyethylene mulch + FRC increased number of fruit and export marketable fruit of cantaloupe (45.2% and 44.8%) with respect to black plastic + FRC, respectively. It is proposed that, under tropical conditions and under high insect stress, mulches combined with floating rowcovers should be selected for their effects on insects in addition to their effects on melon yield. Polyethylene microtunnels were found not economical for cantaloupe production in western Mexico.
“Netted” (Cucumis melo var. reticulatus Naud.) cantaloupes typically abscise when mature, and have a shorter postharvest life than “Honeydew” (Cucumis melo var. inodoris Naud.) -type melons. The amount of ethylene and carbon dioxide produced by two cantaloupe genotypes (slipping), one Honeydew genotype (non-slipping), and the F1 hybrids derived from the slipping x non-slipping genotypes were measured during ripening to understand the genetic control of ethylene and fruit abscission. Sterile, nondestructive gas sampling ports inserted into 20-day-old fruit were used to extract samples from the central cavity of the melons and monitor ethylene and carbon dioxide from day 30 until the fruit was horticulturally mature. Honeydew melons had a lower rate of respiration during maturation and ripening than Netted melons, and Netted melons produced 10-fold more ethylene during ripening than Honeydew types. F1 fruit produced ethylene at levels similar to the Netted parent, abscissed 2 to 4 days later than the Netted parent, yet respired during maturation and ripening like the Honeydew-type parent. Ethylene production, respiration, and abscission appear to be controlled by dominant gene action.
A market-based farming systems research approach was used to analyze the vegetable production system for direct-to-consumer retail and wholesale marketing at the Dallas Farmers’ Market. The majority of farms produced 3–10 different vegetables for a harvest and marketing season of 4 months or more per year, irrespective of their size of operation or status as a full or part-time farmer. Watermelon, cantaloupe, sweet potato, squash, tomato, and southern pea were most commonly produced. Extensive use of leased land supported the production system by allowing land rotation or specific soil type selection. From this survey, a profile of the typical production unit was developed for use in research and extension.
Water application efficiency can be improved by directly monitoring plant water status rather than depending on soil moisture measurements or modeled ET estimates. Plants receiving sufficient water through their roots have cooler leaves than those that are water-stressed, leading to the development of the Crop Water Stress Index based on hand-held infrared thermometry. Substantial error can occur in partial canopies, however, as exposed hot soil contributes to deceptively warm temperature readings. Mathematically comparing red and near-infrared reflectances provides a measure of vegetative cover, and this information was combined with thermal radiance to give a two-dimensional index capable of detecting water stress even with a low percentage of canopy cover. Thermal, red, and near-infrared images acquired over subsurface drip-irrigated cantaloupe fields demonstrated the method's ability to detect areas with clogged emitters, insufficient irrigation rate, and system water leaks.
Listeriosis, a fatal food and environment borne disease of public health and veterinary importance, caused by Listeria spp. has not been explored in Pakistan. One hundred and fifty samples of fresh fruits and vegetables collected over a period of 12 months from various localities of Karachi city were screened according to the standard protocols. Suspected isolates were subjected to conventional methods for identification which included morphological, cultural, biochemical and serological tests. Out of 30 samples each of papaya, water melon and cantaloupe, and 15 each of cucumber, tomato, radish and carrot, Listeria monocytogenes was isolated from two samples of papaya and tomato each and one sample of water melon and cucumber each. It is inferred that fruits and vegetables, if not handled hygienically and served fresh, may be responsible for the transmission of listeriosis.
Plastics in agriculture and horticulture, which had its origins nearly 4 decades ago, have grown to over a 300 million lb. industry in the United States. The inexpensive plastics excited not only researchers but farmers seeking a cheaper method of producing and preserving food and fiber. E. M. Emmert (1), of the University of Kentucky, the father of plastics in the U. S., developed many principles of plastic technology with his research on greenhouses, mulches and row covers. Early row cover experiments on cantaloupe production by C. A. Shadbolt and O. D. McCoy (11, 12), and by B. J. Hall (2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7) on cucumbers, tomatoes, and peppers, established the practical and commercial uses of the row covers for these crops. More sophisticated row covers, where heat, was used to grow early crops in the more northern latitudes, were reported in 1964 and 1965 by Merle H. Jensen and Raymond Sheldrake (9, 10).
Seed lots of several vegetables, including garden beans, cabbage, cantaloupe, cucumber, lettuce, okra, onion, garden peas, pepper, spinach, and tomato, and two seed lots of Kentucky bluegrass were exposed to 40-MHz radiofrequency (RF) electric fields and tested to determine the influence of the electrical treatment on germination performance. Germination was significantly increased by RF treatment through reduction of hard-seed content in beans, okra, and peas. Acceleration of germination was evident in seed lots of bluegrass, tomato, and spinach. It was particularly marked and consistent with spinach. Acceleration of spinach emergence was also noted in soil tests. The influences of seed moisture content, seed size, and characteristics of the RF electric field were also considered. Improved responses are attributed to thermal stresses developed in seed during RF treatment, but further research is recommended to explain the responsible mechanisms.
This article examines the nutritional quality and human health benefits of melons, specifically, muskmelon or cantaloupe (Cucumis melo L. var. reticulatus Naud.) and honeydew melon (Cucumis melo L. var. inodorus Naud.) types. Melons are naturally low in fat and sodium, have no cholesterol, and provide many essential nutrients such as potassium, in addition to being a rich source of beta-carotene and vitamin C. Although melons are an excellent source of some nutrients, they are low in others, like vitamin E, folic acid, iron, and calcium. Since the U.S. diet is already high in fat and protein content, melons should be included in everyone's diet, along with five to eight servings per day of a variety of other fruit and vegetables, to ensure adequate nutrition, promote individual health, and reduce one's risk of cancer and certain other chronic diseases.
We collected growth and yield data on eight cantaloupe cultivars and constructed a simple phenology model that uses local weather data to allow growers to quantify phenological growth and development to project harvest dates. Main vine plastochron interval (PI), time to harvest, and final yield were determined. PI was calculated for each cultivar × transplanting date combination as the reciprocal of the slope of main vine node number vs. growing degree days. Among the tested cultivars,`Ovation' and `Primo' produced significantly higher yields of marketable melons (51.3 Mg/ha, 49.5 Mg/ha, respectively), whereas `Santa Fe' produced the lowest (28.6 Mg/ha). The rest of the tested cultivars produced on average 34.4 Mg/ha. Fruit weight was significantly higher in `Morning Ice' (2.7 kg/fruit) and lowest in `Mission' (1.4 kg/fruit). There were also significant differences among cultivars in the number of marketable melons/ha, which ranged from 11500 melons/ha for `Morning Ice' to 32300 melons/ha for `Ovation'. Plant dry matter production was higher in `Ovation' and `Mission' than all the other cultivars. The relative days to maturity were significantly higher in `Morning Ice' and `Honey Brew' (115 days) and lower in `Gold Rush' (72 days). There were no differences found in days to maturity for `Mission', and `Ovation'(82 days). The average % of soluble solids content ranged from 9.5 for `Ovation' to 14.5 for `Mission' and `Honey Brew'. The variety cantaloupensis types are earlier in maturity than inodorus types. PI was significantly different for all cultivars. Main vine node number was a useful descriptor of vegetative development for cantaloupes. Procedures for calibrating and fitting the model for these cultivars will be discussed and outlined
Bemisia argentifolii is a major pest of melon crop in key production areas of Mexico. Foliar applications of chemical insecticides for their management have been ineffective. The purpose of this research was to evaluate the use of commercial formulations of Beauveria bassiana and different rates for biological control of silverleaf whitefly in cantaloupe melon grown under tropical conditions. Experimental plots were treated with three rates of Mycotrol ES and only an of Naturalis-L or Endosulfan as conventional insecticide. Treatments were arranged in a randomized complete-block design with four replicates. Effects of the treatments on B. argentifolii larval and adult populations and the amount of damage to the foliage and yield melon were recorded. There was not a significant difference between Mycotrol ES rates in nymphs and adults killed. Mycotrol ES, Naturalis and Endosulfan have a similar effect on nymphs and adults control. The nontreated control melon plants had significantly greater number of silverleaf whitefly nymphs and adults than Mycotrol ES, Naturalis-L and Endosulfan treatments. Also, marketable yield was lower for the nontreated control melon plants due to higher whitefly infestations. Results from this study indicate that B. bassiana use resulted in consistently lower whitefly infestations compared to the control. The field results are promising and confirmed the potential of B. bassiana as a microbial control agent against B. argentifolii in melon crop under tropical conditions.