After a dry April, rain has crept into the forecast making conditions ideal for apple scab, fire blight, and cherry leaf spot. Other diseases to keep an eye for management are powdery mildew and bacterial spot. For those who had their stone fruit crop frozen out in April, disease management is still needed. Disease infection periods are being posted for regions in Pennsylvania and Maryland.
After an early beginning to the growing season that saw green tip stage reached on average about 18 days ahead of last year, the weather cooled off and for stations reporting full bloom as of the morning of April 30, they are only 11 to 12 days ahead of last year. Obviously frost damage to flowers and spur leaves will be a compounding factor in deciding whether and when to thin this year.
The spring weather, and its impact on the development of insects, continues to be a roller coaster ride. The Oriental fruit moth biofix (first sustained moth flights for the season) was established on April 12, the second earliest date on record.
Boron is one of the essential micronutrients for tree fruit. It helps in the fruit setting process by facilitating pollen development and subsequent pollen tube growth.
Many of you are replacing older orchards with newer varieties and newer training systems. One of the systems that is currently in vogue is the Tall Spindle System (TSS). It was proposed and developed largely by Terence Robinson at Cornell University. Its popularity is due to the simplicity of its pruning.
We have been working with the Tall Spindle System (TSS) since 2008 with Jonagold/B9 and Daybreak Fuji/M.9 T337. We also have a planting established in 2010 with Aztec Fuji as an NC-140 uniform rootstock trial. In 2014 we established another NC-140 trial with Honeycrisp and Aztec Fuji on 7 and 6 rootstocks respectively.
Expanding the use of recycled water would reduce water and energy use, cut greenhouse gas emissions and benefit public health in California — which is in the midst of a severe drought — and around the world. A new study found that recycled water has great potential for more efficient use in urban settings and to improve the overall resiliency of the water supply.
Scientists have recently discovered that fish in the northeastern U.S. are changing gender – and it’s not due to an identity crisis. A new study published in Ecotoxicology and Environmental Safety finds that male fish are turning into females – a phenomenon known as intersex.
Strawberries are blooming, the rain is falling and it’s warming into the 60’s and 70’s—and as a plant pathologist, all I see is Botrytis spores dancing about the farm. We have already started to see Botrytis popping up on stem tissue and flower petals. Scouting for the pathogen in your fields will help inform you whether you need to spray.
We’re seeing root maggot problems this year, and some from infestations that probably started in when growing the transplants.
Successful small businesses are essential to many local economies and account for 60 percent of the new jobs created since the end of the recession in 2013.
Insects, diseases and weeds aren't the only pests we encounter in greenhouses. Sometimes the damage we see to seeds, seedling and overwintering stock plants is caused by four-footed furry pests - rodents! This article discusses the two most common rodent pests of greenhouses, mice and voles, and how to control them.
Janeen Latin, UCP Central PA, Dwight Heller, Occupational Therapist, and Abbie Spackman, AgrAbility Project Assistant, represented AgrAbility for Pennsylvanians at the 2016 AgrAbility National Training Workshop in Fort Collins, Colorado.
This guide gives case studies of successful organic crop farmers in the Northeast, provides an introduction to the National Organic Program Standards, discusses maintaining organic integrity and how to budget for and market organic crops, and details organic farming practices.
The battle against invasive species is never-ending for agricultural producers, and the latest example is a pair of weeds that threaten to cause significant damage to crop yields across Pennsylvania. Researchers and extension specialists in Penn State's College of Agricultural Sciences are warning growers to be on the lookout for Palmer amaranth and waterhemp, two species of pigweed that are gaining a foothold in the state.
Erin Connolly, professor of biological sciences at the University of South Carolina, has been named professor and head of Penn State's Department of Plant Science, effective May 15. Connolly will succeed Rich Marini, who was head of the Department of Plant Science and the former Department of Horticulture from 2004 to the end of 2015.
Parts of central Pennsylvania (encompassing approximately 40% of the total state) has entered the “abnormally dry” category, according to the US drought monitor. While recent rain showers and thunderstorms have brought some reprieve, many places are still much drier than normal. Over the next seven days, there will be some opportunities for widespread beneficial rains across the state.
Historically glyphosate resistant horseweed was limited to the southeastern Pennsylvania down into the Delmarva and West in Ohio, but now it is much more common in central PA and has appeared in western PA as well.
Significant numbers of Black Cutworm moths have been trapped in some locations in PA. Alfalfa weevil and cereal leaf beetles populations need to be monitored in the upcoming weeks.
Spending some time going over your sprayer this spring can pay dividends. Worn or partially clogged nozzles will cause uneven spray distribution, which can lead to problems later this spring.