Missouri State University
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At the Missouri State Fruit Experiment Station

Lovely weather for a pruning workshop!

Our fruit pruning workshop was held today and the weather cooperated. John Avery, Dr. Martin Kaps, Susanne Howard, Randy Stout and Jeremy Emery demonstrated the proper pruning of apples, peaches, pears, grapes and small fruit crops. Approximately 40 participants attended the workshop.

John Avery (right) with one of the pruning workshop participants.
John Avery (right) with one of the pruning workshop participants.
Dr. Martin Kaps shows how to prune stone fruits.
Dr. Martin Kaps shows how to prune stone fruits.
Jeremy Emery discusses apple fruiting wood.
Jeremy Emery discusses apple fruiting wood.
Randy Stout (with maroon cap) talks about pear pruning.
Randy Stout (with maroon cap) talks about pear pruning.
Susanne Howard demonstrates grape pruning.
Susanne Howard demonstrates grape pruning.

 

 

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Veggies tucked in for the cold spell

The veggies in the high tunnel, namely the cole crops, were slightly damaged by the cold temperatures. Yesterday, we put row cover over them for protection (1 ounce weight). The tunnel is set to close up at 45 degrees F, so hopefully this will keep the plants from sustaining cold injury from the temperatures predicted this week.

Randy, Asher and Jeremy tuck the veggies in for the cold night ahead.
Randy, Asher and Jeremy tuck the veggies in for the cold night ahead.
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Veggies planted in the high tunnel today

The cole crops and lettuce was planted in the high tunnel late yesterday and early this morning. The plants were watered in by hand after planting, but the irrigation was set up right after planting so it is ready to go for irrigation and fertigation. The plants in the flats were left out over the weekend to acclimate and some received a little nip from cold temperatures. The vegetables planted included Salanova Red Butter, Green Butter, Red Oak Leaf and Green Oak Leaf lettuce; Bay Meadows, Blue Wind and DiCicco broccoli; Green Caraflex, Alcosa and Super Red mini cabbages; and Cheddar cauliflower.

The plants were left in the tunnel over the weekend to harden. Some were nipped by cold temperature.
The plants were left in the tunnel over the weekend to harden. The cole crops were nipped by cold temperature but the lettuce came through fine.
The plants are set in two staggered double rows.
The plants are set in two staggered double rows.

 

Amanda waters the plants after planting.
Amanda waters the plants after planting.

 

The planting continues.
The planting continues.
Mission accomplished.
Mission accomplished.
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Getting ready to plant veggies in the high tunnel

Randy and Jeremy have shored up the high tunnel to close up any gaps at the base or at the top of the curtain. We are getting ready to plant three varieties of mini cabbages, three varieties of broccoli, ‘Cheddar’ cauliflower, and four varieties of Salanova lettuce. We hope to complement the newly funded Specialty Crops Block Grant project -¬†High Tunnel Production Rotation of Primocane Bearing Raspberries in Grow Bags – with early season vegetables followed by the raspberries.

We moved the lettuce and cole crops from the greenhouse to the tunnel today to harden them off before planting next week.
We moved the lettuce and cole crops from the greenhouse to the tunnel today to harden them off before planting next week.
Any gaps at the base of the tunnel and at the top of the curtain have been closed.
Any gaps at the base of the tunnel and at the top of the curtain have been closed.

 

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Assessing winter bud injury on grapevine

Since we have experienced winter lows of minus 8 and minus 6 degrees Fahrenheit in January, we assessed winter bud injury for some cultivars. As part of his VESTA practicum work, Jeremy Emery is managing the assessment. Jeremy, Randy Stout and Asher Ramsey have all learned the assessment process and evaluated the % primary bud mortality for the following cultivars.

 

Cultivar % primary bud mortality*
Cayuga White 12%
Chambourcin 50%
Norton 0%
Seyval Blanc 9%
Vidal Blanc 5%

 

* Based on number of dead primary buds in a 100 bud representative sample.

Jeremy slices through buds on the collected grape canes to assess cold injury.
Jeremy slices through buds on the collected grape canes to assess cold injury.
Starting at the tip, you take slices parallel to the base off until you to get to the primary bud.
Starting at the tip, you take slices parallel to the base off until you to get to the primary bud.
A live primary shows bright green concentric rings in the middle of the compound bud.
A live primary shows bright green concentric rings in the middle of the compound bud.
Asher, Jeremy and Randy have evaluated the winter injury of the grape cultivars before pruning so we can increase the number of buds left if needed.
Asher, Jeremy and Randy have evaluated the winter injury of the grape cultivars before pruning so we can increase the number of buds left if needed.

 

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Putting Chambourcin grape cuttings in the heated propagation bed

Randy and Jeremy took the Chambourcin hardwood cuttings that were collected last November out of cold storage and put them in a heated propagation bed in the root cellar. They labeled the bundles, put powdered hormone on the base and tapped any excess off, and then set them in the propagation bed so the basal ends were near the heat and the tops were exposed to the cool air in the root cellar.

Randy and Jeremy sort through the cuttings and make sure they are labeled for identification.
Randy and Jeremy sort through the cuttings and make sure they are labeled for identification.

 

Randy coats the base of the cutting with Hormodin 1 rooting hormone and then taps off the excess powder.
Randy coats the base of the cutting with Hormodin 1 rooting hormone and then taps off the excess powder.

 

After the cuttings have hormone applied, Jeremy buries the base in the propagation bed.
After the cuttings have hormone applied, Jeremy buries the base in the propagation bed.
The cuttings are now heated at the base and should root readily.
The cuttings are now heated at the base and should root readily.

 

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2013 Holiday Party at Mountain Grove

Our holiday party was held today. We had a pot luck and were happy to have faculty and staff from the main campus and Darr Center come for lunch.

Our Holiday Group
Our Holiday Group

 

We had a drawing for gifts and played dirty Santa where you could steal from others if you like.
We had a drawing for gifts and played dirty Santa where you could steal from others if you like.
Randy (behind red solo cup) and Jeremy propose a toast.
Randy (behind red solo cup) and Jeremy propose a toast.
Dr. Elliott and Dr. Hwang compete in the tacky tie contest.
Dr. Elliott and Dr. Hwang compete in the third annual tacky tie contest.
Here we are eating.
Here we are eating,
and eating . . .
and eating . . .
and eating . . .
and eating . . .
and eating!
and eating!

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Pruning apples

The field crew began apple pruning today after completing the West Catawba vineyard.

Randy Stout instructs the apple tree pruning crew.
Randy Stout instructs the apple tree pruning crew.
Cally uses the loppers.
Cally reaches for a branch.
Jeremy and Sheila work on another tree.
Jeremy and Sheila work on another tree.

 

 

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Grape phenology and GDD accumulation

Harvest is finally complete!

GDD base 50 accumulated since April 1 = 3435 (October 31) http://agebb.missouri.edu/weather/reports/gddTable.asp

This is -144 GGD base 50 from average.

Phenology recorded and photographed on November 4.
Phenology stages according to the Modified E-L system http://door.uwex.edu/files/2010/10/ModifiedEichhornLorennzsystem.pdf

A quick visual assessment of cane lignification (good – 90 – 100%+; fair – 50 – 90%+; poor – 50% or less) was made and is as follows: Traminette – good/fair; Concord – good; Sunbelt – good; Norton – good/fair; Chambourcin – fair; Valvin Muscat – fair; Wets Catawba – good; Vignoles – poor; Cayuga White – poor; Vidal Blanc – poor; Seyval Blanc – poor; Research Catawba – good; Chardonel – good; Vivant – poor (overcropped in demo vineyard).

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