Vegetarian Newsletter

A Vegetable Crops Extension Publication

University of Florida
Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences
Cooperative Extension Service

Vegetarian 00-02
February 2000

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VEGETABLE CROPS CALENDAR

COMMERCIAL VEGETABLES

VEGETABLE GARDENING



(Note: Anyone is free to use the information in this newsletter. Whenever possible,
please give credit to the authors. The purpose of trade names in this publication is
solely for the purpose of providing information and does not necessarily
constitute a recommendation of the product.)

Vegetable Crops Calendar

2000 Florida Postharvest Horticulture Institute and Industry Tour.
Institute - March 6th, University of Florida, Gainesville, with video-links to several sites in Florida.
Industry Tour - March 7-10th Statewide
For more information contact: Steve Sargent, (352) 392-1928 ext. 215, e-mail or Abbie Fox (352) 392-1928 ext.235, fax (352) 392-5653, e-mail sasa@gnv.ifas.ufl.edu

Commercial Vegetable Production

Specialty Crops & Specialty Markets Session

(The following is abstracted from Suwannee Valley Field & Greenhouse Grower’s Short Course & Trade Show which was held Jan. 8, 2000)

A. So You’re Thinking About Growing for the Restaurant Market?

1. Betty O’Toole, O’Toole’s Herb Farm (growers’ perspective)

Who we are:

About 10 years ago, they decided they wanted to go back to the family farm (150 years in the family), always liked herbs.

Didn’t have an idea of how much work was involved.

Spent 2 years preparing: checked with Better Business Bureau, seed companies, herb growers, nurseries, Extension agents, upscale restaurants (what they used, sources, organic?).

Found most restaurants weren’t using local sources.

Determined to make it work.

Jim Wilson, Victory Garden, Callaway South was best source of knowledge.

Became FOG (Florida Organic Growers) certified before doing anything organic.

Had time to get ready for organic herb production.

What we do:

No down time (a good day is a rainy Sunday morning so only have to check the greenhouses, no field work that day).

Fresh-cut retail and potted plants.

Workshops in Fall and Spring.

January is "slow time" to inoculate Shiitake logs, and get ready for Spring production.

Spring is busiest time, but work 7 days a week, 12 months a year. Cannot leave the farm for a day without someone tending the crops.

Pulled in all directions, but have a more positive cash flow than traditional cash crop farming.

How we got there:

Unique to each farmer’s situation, but determined to make it work.


2. Keith Baxter, Owner & Chef, Kool Beanz Café (chef’s perspective)

Opportunities:

Chef has to see, touch, feel, taste
Chef has to be educated about seasonality of supply

Restaurant people are unique:

Farmers:

Talk with chef:

The reason Baxter continues to buy from the O’Tooles for the last five years is because:

Key = Balance between knowing/deciding:

In closing:


B. Alternative Hydroponic Systems & Specialty Crops Trials

(Producing crops out of normal season with alternative technology emphasis)
Bob Hochmuth , Multi-county Vegetable Extension Agent
(Field production emphasis)

Example: Difficulty in growing basil in February & lettuce in summer, (trying to come up with alternative ways of producing crops out of normal Florida season).

1. White Mulch, Late Season Lettuce Trial Results (see Fig. 1).

                   fig1.jpg (43508 bytes)

 

 

 

Fig.1. Lettuce trial

Detailed information (Lettuce cultivars for warm seasons) available at: http://ntrec-sv.ifas.ufl.edu/south_gh.htm

2. Ornamental Corn

3. Organic Production in Verticulture

fig2.jpg (22640 bytes)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 



Fig. 2. Vertigro system.


4. Conventional Production in Grow Bag System
(Bradford County on-farm trial):

5. NFREC - Suwannee Valley Tour:

fig3.jpg (60185 bytes)Fig. 3. Strawberries in grow bags.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

fig4.jpg (66204 bytes)Fig. 4. Leafy greens in grow bags.


C. Lei Lani Leon, NFREC - Suwannee Valley Lab Technician

(hydroponic& greenhouse alternative crops & systems emphasis)

1. Basil variety trial (Vertigro system)

2. Basil profit projection

3. Towers

(See Fig. 5)

fig5.jpg (51243 bytes)Fig. 5. Towers system.

More information on greenhouse specialty crop trials 1999-2000 season is available at http://nfrec-sv.ifas.ufl.south.gh.htm

Outdoor hydroponic specialty crop production covered at tour of SVAREC, more information available at http://nfrec-sv.ifas.ufl.edu/hydro_trial.htm

(Jacque Breman, Union County Ext. Dir., Vegetarian 00-01)

 

Potato Variety Trial Results, Hastings, Fla.,1999

One hundred and thirty entries were evaluated in five trials at the Hastings-REC in 1999. The lines were grouped by type and/or color. One of these trials is reported here.

The trial was grown in an Ellzey fine sand composed of 90-95% sand, <2.5% clay, <5% silt, <2% organic matter, and pH 6.8. The field was fumigated with 6 gal/A in-the-row (40 in. row spacing) of Telone® II (1,3-D) on December 10, 1998, and 20 lb/A of Temik® 15G (aldicarb) was applied at planting on February 10, 1999. The crop was seep fertilized with 1200 lb/A of a 14-2-12 at planting and 700 lb/A of the same analysis fertilizer on March 17. The crop was irrigated as needed. Variety treatments were replicated four times in a randomized block design. Plots were single 15 ft long rows with 22 seed pieces weighing 2-2.5 oz planted 8 inches apart. Lexone® DF was applied at 1.25 lb/A for weed control on March 3. Pesticides applied included Bravo Ultrex® (chlorothalonil) at 1.25 lb/A on April 2; Tattoo C® (50% propamocarb HCl + 50% chlorothalonil) at 37 oz/A on April 9; Manzate 200 DF® (mancozeb) at 1.5 lb/A on April 15, 22, 29, and May 5; Dipel DF® plus Latron B 1956® at 2.0 lb/A and 1.0 oz/A, respectively, on April 15, 22, 29, and May 5; Dithane DF® (mancozeb) at 1.5 lb/A and Biobit HP® (Bacillus thuringiensis) at 2.0 lb/A on May 12. Emergence counts were taken March 9, 16, 23, and April 1. Plant senescence was rated with 1 = vigorous and 10 = dead. The crop was harvested, washed, graded, sized, and weighed June 1, (111 days after planting). Random samples of 15-20 "A-size" tubers were taken for specific gravity determinations and tuber quality assessments. Specific gravity was determined using the weight-in-air/weight-in-water method. Appearance of tubers in a composite sample of each line was rated using the NE 184 project rating scheme. Tuber skin color, texture, shape, eye depth, and appearance were rated. Tubers were cut to examine for hollow heart, internal necrosis, corky ring spot, and brown rot. Selected data are reported in Table 1. For a complete report, request Res. Rept. SAN 2000-11

Maranca, a relatively small cream color potato, had the highest marketable yield with 461 cwt/acre of which 78% were in the 1f to 2˝ inch size. Nine cream to yellow-flecked potato lines were included in the trial and were the top 5 in yield. Saginaw Gold was the only one in the top 5 with an appearance rating of good. There were 16 red potato entries with Rideau, Chieftan, Red LaSoda (USDA), and B1758-4 having the highest marketable yields. B 1758-4, B1145-2, B0817-4, and Redsen had an appearance rating of good. Five white lines were included in the trial with Sebago and LaChipper having the highest marketable yields, but only poor to fair and fair, respectively, in appearance. Five purple lines were evaluated (Table 1). B1529-1 had the highest marketable yield, a good appearance, was moderately netted, mostly oblong, and deep eyes.

Table 1. Yield, size, specific gravity and general appearance data of potato varieties in the red and yellow trial, Hastings, FL, 1999.

Variety

Yield (cwt/A)
No. 1z

% Size distribution

Specific gravity

Skin color

No. 1

B

1f -2˝"

2˝ -3"

>3"

Culls

Maranca (cream)

461 ay

83

7

78

4

1

10

1.0415 t

Cream

Yukon Gold

392 b

93

2

73

20

0

5

1.0703 b

Buff

MSE149-5Y

385 b

93

3

67

26

0

4

1.0588 j-n

Cream

Saginaw Gold

349 bc

94

3

88

6

0

3

1.0665 c-f

Cream

Columbo

348 bc

85

5

79

6

0

10

1.0498 rs

Buff

Rideau (red)

338 cd

91

3

67

24

0

6

1.0553 n-w

Red

Chieftan

334 c-e

87

3

81

6

0

10

1.0563 m-o

Pink

Red LaSoda (USDA)

329 c-f

83

4

64

18

1

13

1.0525 p-r

Red

B1758-4

319 c-g

87

10

87

0

0

3

1.0605 h-l

Red

Sebago

315 c-h

89

3

62

25

0

10

1.0588 j-n

White

LaChipper

310 c-i

91

3

76

15

0

6

1.0633 e-h

White

B1758-3

308 c-i

86

9

84

2

0

5

1.0593 i-m

Red

Red LaSoda

301 d-i

91

4

81

10

0

5

1.0548 o-q

Red

Norland

301 d-i

91

3

85

6

0

6

1.0560 m-p

Red

B1425-9

296 d-i

81

11

77

4

0

8

1.0763 a

Cream

B1529-1 (purple)

294 d-i

85

8

82

3

0

7

1.0608 h-k

Purple

Sinora

291 e-j

88

11

88

0

0

1

1.0673 b-d

Cream

B1751-5

291 e-j

79

7

65

14

0

14

1.0610 h-j

Cream

B0984-1

289 f-j

90

7

82

8

0

3

1.0630 f-h

Red

B1492-12

285 f-k

82

10

81

1

0

8

1.0625 f-i

Red

Penta

276 g-l

86

10

83

3

0

4

1.0573 k-o

White

Diamant

274 g-m

76

17

76

0

0

7

1.0648 d-g

Cream

B0967-11

272 h-m

82

7

82

0

0

11

1.0605 h-l

Purple

B1493-3

268 i-m

91

5

76

15

0

4

1.0673 b-d

Red

B1145-2

267 i-m

86

7

86

0

0

7

1.0540 o-q

Red

Cherry Red

266 i-m

91

6

90

1

0

3

1.0700 bc

Red

Super Red Norland

249 j-n

86

3

75

11

0

11

l.0800 s

Red

B1763-4

244 k-n

87

7

83

4

0

6

1.0668 b-e

Purple

B0852- 7

232 l-n

81

10

79

2

0

9

1.0693 bc

Purple

Superior

230 mn

90

7

90

0

0

3

1.0688 bc

White

B0817-4

218 no

88

9

86

2

0

3

1.0760 a

Red

B11022-3

184 op

75

20

74

0

0

6

1.0678 b-d

Red

Redsen

176 op

84

12

82

2

0

4

1.0585 j-n

Red

All Blue

171 p

63

34

63

0

0

3

1.0570 l-o

Purple

Appel 149 p 60 27 59 1 1 12 1.0523 qr White
z No. 1 consists of sizes 1f to >3" of marketable quality
y Mean separation in columns by Duncan’s multiple range test, 5% level.

(White and Weingartner, Acting Ctr. Dir. - Hastings REC, Vegetarian 00-02)

 

Vegetable Gardening

Book Review: Vegetable Gardening in Florida, by Brent Rowell

The following is a review of my book, Vegetable Gardening in Florida. The review was written by Brent Rowell of the University of Kentucky in Lexington for the January-March, 2000 issue of HorTechnology, a publication of The American Society for Horticultural Science.

The most important disclosure of the review is that the book, Vegetable Gardening in Florida, would make a useful reference not only in Florida, but for gardeners and gardener advisors everywhere in the USA.

Vegetable Gardening in Florida. James M. Stephens. 1999. The Univeristy Press of Florida, 15 NW 15th Street, Gainesville, FL 32611-2079. 135 p. color photographs and illustrations. softcover $15.95 + $4.00 shipping ISBN 0-8130-1674-6.

Working with commercial vegetables and living far from the balmy subtropical realms of Florida, I didn’t respond over enthusiastically when asked to review Vegetable Gardening in Florida by James M. Stephens. I was pleasantly surprised to learn that 95% or more of the information in the book is applicable to gardening in general and that it was written by someone with a solid career’s worth of commercial and gardening experience with vegetable crops.

Far from a chore, this turned out to be an easy assignment as the book is very well written with good quality color photographs and/or color artwork on every page. A lot of thought went into the design of the book; it has just the right combination of photographs, text, and white space to make it easy to use without patronizing the reader.

The book assumes nothing and is suitable for everyone from the beginner to the master gardener. Most of the technical jargon has been eliminated or carefully explained. The author even goes the extra mile in explaining some old garden terminology that is often confusing to new gardeners. For example, he explains planting in hills vs. rows and raised beds. This brings back memories of 25 years ago as an undergraduate trying to fathom why planting in hills may never involve raised mounds of earth.

Vegetable Gardening in Florida is logically arranged into 15 chapters on gardening principles and techniques followed by a long chapter with brief treatments of individual vegetables, a mandatory chapter on herb production, and a final chapter on harvesting, storage, and exhibiting produce. Specifics on yields, seed requirements, variety selection, and Florida planting dates are conveniently located in tables (Planting Guides) at the end of the book.

Together with the usual gardening topics, readers will find chapters on Alternative Gardening, including a brief treatment of organic gardening and a fairly detailed discussion of hydroponic gardening.

Many topics of interest to organic gardeners are also found in other chapters like Garden Insects or Organic Matter which discuss the use of animal manures, cover crops, and composting. I would have like to see more detailed information on the use of trickle irrigation in the home garden. Many gardeners I know get confused by our commercial trickle irrigation publications and would like to have the (simple) plumbing laid out in detail. The only other suggestion might be to include more of the newer disease-resistant commercial hybrids in the table of recommended garden varieties.

All of the vegetables we’re familiar with are included in the Individual Vegetable Crops section plus many others may be limited to gardens in the tropics and subtropics. Not many of us will be growing cassava, jicama, or malanga, for example; on the other hand, most extension agents and specialists do get questions about tropical vegetables from time to time, and the information provided here should be helpful.

This is a far cry from the black and white (can I say boring?) gardening extension publications that many of us are accustomed to. This book should be out there competing on the shelves with other high quality gardening books from major publishers. It offers more good information than most and is certainly more bang for the buck. There are important differences in this book and the popular competition. This is a book you can trust. The information presented is solid, science-based, and without the fluff and mythology often included at no extra charge in popular books on vegetable gardening.

Vegetable Gardening in Florida is highly recommended to the general public anywhere in the country and especially to extension agents for reference of for use in their Master Gardener programs.

(Stephens, Vegetarian 00-02)

 

Extension Vegetable Crops Specialists

Daniel J. Cantliffe
Professor and Chairman, Horticultural Sciences Department
Mark A. Ritenour
Assistant Professor, postharvest

Timothy E. Crocker
Professor, deciduous fruits and nuts, strawberry

Ronald W. Rice
Assistant Professor, nutrition
John Duvall
Assistant Professor, strawberry
Steven A. Sargent
Professor, postharvest
Betsy M. Lamb
Assistant Professor, production
William M. Stall
Professor, weed control
Yuncong Li
Assistant Professor, soils
James M. Stephens
Professor and Editor, vegetable gardening
Donald N. Maynard
Professor, varieties
Charles S. Vavrina
Associate Professor, transplants
Stephen M. Olson
Professor, small farms
James M. White
Associate Professor, organic farming


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