Basically all grapes have been harvested with the exception of Norton in the Foundation Vineyard, North rows 6 – 9, Research Vineyard and Norton in the North Vineyard rows 1 – 3. We beginning to harvest Norton this week. Photos and stages will be included in the last observation at the end of October.
John Rumfelt brought his weird looking Beauregard sweet potato vine in to the station wondering why it looked so strange. It is fasciated – flattened and ribbed – due to hormonal imbalance from a mutation or other factors. Fasciation is not contagious and John told Leslie Akers that the vines had a good amount of sweet potatoes. I have seen this symptom on highbush blueberry and apple branches, but this is the first time I saw a fasciated sweet potato! To read more about fasciation, see Fascinating Fasciation at https://hort.purdue.edu/ext/fascinatingfasciation.html
The fall festival in Willow Springs was held on Saturday, October 1st this year. The annual event has many nice attractions, one being a very large fruit and vegetable garden harvest competition. Gardeners enter their fall bounty in several categories including fresh fruit, fresh vegetables, preserved fruit, preserved vegetables, preserved other and jams and jellies. Kim Rich, editor of the Howell County News manages this event. I judged the entries and then enjoyed the festival.
Bitter melons were arranged nicely with foliage.
Colorful pickled veggies.
Ginger in a basket.
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Viticulture and Enology students from the Ningxia University in China visited the Fruit Station today for some hands on learning. The students arrived in Springfield in September and will be attending Missouri State University. Today some of the students came to Mountain Grove for some hands on experience in the vineyard. They harvested Vidal Blanc and Chambourcin grapes. The Vidal Blanc grapes were then put through the stemmer-crusher and a basket press. The juice was filtered and drank. The Chambourcin Grapes were put into the cooler. The students also received a tour of the winery and distillery. The students were led by Dr Martin Kaps, Susanne Howard and C.J. Odneal. Dr. Wenping Qiu provided the Ningxia faculty with a tour and helped us out with translation.
Dr. Kaps, Dr. Qiu and Susanne welcome the group
Susanne helps with instructions on how to harvest grapes
The students harvesting Vidal Blanc grapes
Jeremy, Martin, C.J. Avery and Susanne set up the stemmer-crusher
Loading the stemmer-crusher
Grapes after stemmer-crusher
Then this goes into the basket press
Loading the basket press
Pressing the grapes
We have juice
Filtering the juice
Time to taste the jucie
Dr. Kaps gives a winery tour
The students learning about the winery
Dr. Kaps demonstrates the bottling process
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Ozark Mtn. Technical Center, local K-8 and K-12 school counselors, and Missouri Department of Elementary and Secondary Education (DESE) representatives toured the Fruit Station. The group was interested in job opportunities that we have for students and what we look for in the students that apply. The weather was perfect for a wagon ride tour of the research field (courtesy of Field Supervisor, Randy Stout) and was followed up with up by a winery tour lead by C.J. Odneal and Dr. Karl Wilker. We presented what opportunities we have for students and look forward to working with the counselors in the future to assist our community and local students.
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Dr. Marshall Stewart the new Vice Chancellor for Extension and Engagement for University of Missouri visited the Fruit Station today as part of his Listen and Learn Tour. Dr. Ron Del Vecchio, director of the Darr School of Agriculture welcomed the group and Dr. Stewart was presented with a bottle of Missouri State award winning Chambourcin Reserve. Both Missouri State University and University of Missouri discussed plans and shared enthusiasm about moving forward with partnerships and ways to continue to serve our community. In attendance were Missouri State Faculty, University of Missouri Faculty, Extension Specialists, Extension Council Chairs and members, County Commissioners and area community members.
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