Missouri State University
What's happening in the field?
At the Missouri State Fruit Experiment Station

Plastic removed from the high tunnel today

We managed to take the plastic off of the high tunnel in time for holiday break. The tunnel has been covered since 2010, so it is definitely time for new plastic. We took a soil sample today in order to compare it to the soil sample taken in 2010 in order to see if there has been a buildup of salts. Soluble salts may build up in a high tunnel since it is covered and rain does not wash salts out. By taking the plastic off and waiting a while before we replace it, we hope that rain will allow any salt buildup to wash away.

Wiggle wire holds the plastic onto the high tunnel.
Wiggle wire holds the plastic onto the high tunnel.
All of the wiggle wire is removed from the north and south sides of the tunnel.
All of the wiggle wire is removed from the north and south sides of the tunnel.
The wire is also removed from both ends.
The wire is also removed from both ends.
The plastic is pulled off of the high tunnel.
The plastic is pulled off of the high tunnel.
The plastic is folded up for removal.
The plastic is folded up for removal.
Randy covers the breaker box with plastic.
Randy covers the breaker box with plastic.
Now the high tunnel is open to the elements.
Now the high tunnel is open to the elements.
Posted in High Tunnel | Leave a comment

Mountain Grove holiday party on December 19

We held our holiday party on Monday, December 19 for our faculty and staff. Here are some pics from the event.

Everyone pitched in on the food as usual.
Everyone pitched in on the food as usual.
Susanne gives some rabbit ears to Pam.
Susanne gives some rabbit ears to Pam.
Dr. Elliott came for lunch.
Dr. Elliott came for lunch.
The kids enjoyed the food.
The kids enjoyed the food.
Shelia keeps eating and eating.
Shelia keeps eating and eating.
It's almost time for a nap.
It’s almost time for a nap.
It's great to visit with the folks from main campus.
Carrie caught with her mouth full.
The ugly tie contest was expanded to include sweaters and hats this year.
The ugly tie contest was expanded to include sweaters and hats this year.
Dr. Del Vecchio talked about the new College of Agriculture and helped to dedicate this dawn redwood tree planted on campus to Dr. Elliott for his years of service.
Dr. Del Vecchio (left) talked about the new College of Agriculture and helped to dedicate this dawn redwood tree planted on campus to Dr. Elliott for his years of service as Director.
Posted in Events | Leave a comment

Raspberries moved out of the high tunnel today.

The raspberries in grow bags were moved out of the high tunnel today and mulched with straw. The leaves did not fall before the bags were moved, but low temperatures predicted this weekend led us to decide to move the bags and mulch them for protection.

The canes were cut about 2 - 3 inches from the base.
The canes were cut about 2 – 3 inches from the base.
Jeremy and Shelia finish the first two blocks.
Jeremy and Shelia finish the first two blocks.
The two blocks on the south side are moved out via assembly line.
The two blocks on the south side are moved out via assembly line.
Avery and Mannie getting near the end of the line.
Avery and Mannie getting near the end of the line.
Straw bales are placed around the perimeter.
Straw bales are placed around the perimeter.
Raspberries in bed for the winter.
Raspberries in bed for the winter.
Posted in High Tunnel | Leave a comment

Pruning Apple Trees

The field crew began pruning the Apple trees today.  The crew will work on this over the next several weeks as there are almost 4 acres of Apple Orchard’s and approximately 450 trees of various sizes.

Posted in Apples, Pruning | Leave a comment

Raspberry harvest discontinued in high tunnel due to cold temperatures

We checked the high tunnel raspberries last Friday and found that many were frozen after a drop to 9.5 degrees F on Friday, December 9. Even though we had the thermostat set to close the tunnel at 45 degrees F, the tunnel is unheated and the berries froze. We counted the berries that remained on the plants in order to get an idea of how much crop was left at this point. Last year, we harvested into December as well.

Instead of harvesting berries today, we counted both red and green unharvested berries that froze due to low temperatures last week.
Instead of harvesting berries today, we collected and counted both red and green unharvested berries that froze due to low temperatures last week. Shelia Long (back right) supervises harvest with our field crew.
Jennifer Morganthaler is keeping track of everyone's berry count.
Jennifer Morganthaler is keeping track of everyone’s berry count. Each bag are the berries collected from a particular cultivar (treatment) and block (replication).
It was VERY QUIET in the room!
It was VERY QUIET in the room!

 

Posted in High Tunnel | Leave a comment

Dr. James Baker, Dr. Erin Parrish and Thomas Downs, Esq. Visit the Fruit Station

Dr. James Baker – Vice President for Research and Economic Development and International Programs, Dr. Erin Parrish – Director of Office of Research Administration, and Thomas Downs Esq. visited the Fruit Station today and met with Darr School of Agriculture Director Dr. Ronald Del Vecchio to discuss the current projects at the Fruit Station.  After discussion the group toured the distillery/winery and the research field.

A little bit about Thomas Downs:

Having served for more than 20 years as an attorney at two national law firms in Washington, D.C., Tom represents state and local governments, institutions of higher learning, non-profit organizations, and other clients on public policy and funding matters. He is involved with a broad range of federal agency programs, legislation, federal funding and partnerships.  He works closely with the White House, federal agencies and Congress to obtain support for a variety of initiatives to benefit his clients.

Tom spent a decade on Capitol Hill serving as chief of staff and senior legislative assistant to members sitting on various committees, including the House Committees on Appropriations, Armed Services, Merchant Marine and Fisheries, and Science, Space and Technology.

Helped public and private organizations advance legislative and agency initiatives involving drinking water and wastewater systems, wetlands protection, open space preservation and parkland acquisition.

Assisted nongovernmental organizations with successful overseas public policy initiatives. Helped obtain congressional support and funding for programs involving leadership training, poverty eradication and reconciliation efforts in Africa and the Middle East.

On behalf of health systems, hospitals, medical research and health care advocacy organizations operating in 20 states, provided advice and counsel on public policy matters and helped obtain federal funding.

While working on “the Hill,” Tom attended American University’s Washington College of Law, where he served on the law review. He is admitted to the bar of the District of Columbia.  He received his B.A. from Brown University.

Federal service:  Chief of Staff and Senior Legislative Assistant, Congressman George J. Hochbrueckner of New York; Legislative Assistant, Congressman Martin Olav Sabo of Minnesota, and Aide to Senator Patrick J. Leahy and Congressman James M. Jeffords of Vermont.

 

Posted in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Dr. James Baker, Dr. Erin Parrish and Thomas Downs, Esq. Visit the Fruit Station

Missouri Postsecondary Agricultural Students Visit The Fruit Station

On Thursday, November 10 we hosted members of the Missouri Postsecondary Agricultural Student Organization.  Approximately 140 Agriculture students from 8 Community Colleges visited the Fruit Station.   The event consisted of presentations about the Darr School of Agriculture, Agriculture in Nepal and current research being conducted at the station.  The students also toured the winery/distillery and took a wagon ride tour of the research field.  Faculty and staff were on hand with recruitment materials and to answer questions.  It was by far one of the largest groups we have hosted.  It was a pleasure getting to know some of the students and more about their school programs.  The 8 colleges in attendance were:  Crowder College, Northwest Missouri Community College, State Technical College of Missouri, St. Louis Community College – Florissant, North Central Missouri College, State Fair Community College, Three Rivers Community College and Missouri State University – West Plains.

 

 

 

 

Posted in Events, Students | Comments Off on Missouri Postsecondary Agricultural Students Visit The Fruit Station

First fall frost

It was a frosty morning today after a warm October and November. Our Real-Time Weather Station at Mountain Grove recorded 32.8 degrees Fahrenheit for a low, so only parts of the landscape had frost. The first fall frost is almost a month later than the average date of October 15.

Here is a photo of the first fall frost at Mountain Grove taken in the Ozark Arboretum.
Here is a photo of the first fall frost at Mountain Grove taken in the Ozark Arboretum.
Posted in Weather | Comments Off on First fall frost

Grape phenology and GDD accumulation

GDD base 50 accumulation count beginning April 1 = 3885 http://agebb.missouri.edu/weather/reports/gddTable.asp

Phenology stages according to the Modified E-L system http://door.uwex.edu/files/2010/10/ModifiedEichhornLorennzsystem.pdf

This is the final phenology observation for 2016. We have had unseasonable warm weather through October with no freezing temperatures. The grapes look as though they are hardening properly, but if there is a precipitous drop in temperature some cultivars may be cold injured, particularly those that are holding on to their leaves at this point – like Chambourcin in the MVEC vineyard. We will watch and see and keep our fingers crossed!

Posted in Grapes, Phenology | Comments Off on Grape phenology and GDD accumulation

Grape phenology and GDD accumulation

GDD base 50 accumulation count beginning April 1 = 3793 http://agebb.missouri.edu/weather/reports/gddTable.asp

Phenology stages according to the Modified E-L system http://door.uwex.edu/files/2010/10/ModifiedEichhornLorennzsystem.pdf

The last vineyard to be harvested was the North Nortons on October 19th. Photos and stages will be included in the last observation at the end of October.

Posted in Grapes, Phenology | Comments Off on Grape phenology and GDD accumulation