Title: Vegetarian
Full Citation
Permanent Link: http://ufdc.ufl.edu/UF00087399/00099
 Material Information
Title: Vegetarian
Series Title: Vegetarian
Physical Description: Serial
Creator: Horticultural Sciences Department, Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences, University of Florida
Publisher: Horticultural Sciences Department, Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences, University of Florida
Publication Date: July 1974
 Record Information
Bibliographic ID: UF00087399
Volume ID: VID00099
Source Institution: University of Florida
Rights Management: All rights reserved by the source institution and holding location.


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/1 Il RiS H

July 5, 1974

Prepared by Extension Vegetable Crops Specialists

J. F. Kelly

S. R. Kostewicz
Assistant Professor

James Montelaro

J. R. Hicks
Assistant Professor

J. M. Stephens
Associate Professor

R. K. Showalter


FROM: James M. Stephens, Associate Vegetable Crops Specialist




Yield Potentials for Florida Vegetable Crops
Tomato Pinworm
Seedling Survival Under Full-Bed Mulch Culture
Index for 1973-74 Vegetarian Newsletters


A. Shipping Containers Labeling


A. Timely Gardening Topics
B. Know Your Vegetables Casaba Melon

NOTE: Anyone is free to use the information in this newsletter.
possible, please give credit to the authors.



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The VEGETARIAN Newsletter



A. Yield Potentials for Florida Vegetable Crops

We are often asked to help with feasibility studies that require
estimates of production. In a situation such as this, we always resort to
"average" yields. It has been said that an average producer of vegetables
does not make a fair return on his investment of time and money. The
reference, of course, is to the consistent, average producer and not to the
person experiencing occasional failures.

Recognizing the fact that average yields can be somewhat meaningless,
Dr. D. L. Brooke in his annual cost and returns analyses for selected vege-
table crops has included ranges from low to high for six of the major items
including yields. The ranges given for yields are quite revealing. Yields
in the low range can be attributed to adverse conditions like weather, diseases,
etc. However, the upper ranges of yields tell a story of not only cooperation
from the weather, but an added factor of good management in production.

Going one step further, the Extension Specialists have been surveying
county agents and growers in an attempt to determine record yields under commer-
cial conditions for selected vegetables. These are presented (whenever avail-
able) together with ranges of yield of selected vegetables from the major produc-
ing areas in Florida. Presentation of these data gives vegetable growers an
opportunity to compare his yields with others in his area and elsewhere in the
State. Knowing the potentials, growers may wish to raise their sights to shoot
for higher yields and to work actively to achieve that goal.

Ranges in Yield for Selected Vegetables

Crop and Yields 1972-73 Season Record Yield
Area Low High Average (Several seasons)

Snap Beans (bushels)
Palm Beach 49 95 82
Pole Beans (bushels)
Dade County 284 336 308
Cabbage (50 lb.)
Hastings 287 672 469 1000
Sanford 351 974 561
Celery (crates)
Central Florida 259 527 426 1100
Everglades 471 777 648
Sweet Corn (crates)
East Coast 183 240 202
Everglades 136 320 229 410
Zellwood 243 322 287
Cucumbers (bushels)
Immokalee 69 325 178


Ranges in Yield for Selected Vegetables (Continued)

Crop and Yields 1972-73 Season Record Yield
Area Low High Average (Several seasons)

Eggplant (bushels)
Palm Beach 286 974 692
Peppers (bushels)
Immokalee-Lee 128 800 542 1100 on crown
Palm Beach 218 896 517 harvest
Irish Potatoes (cwt.)
Dade County 151 237 201 7
Hastings 112 247 175
Squash (bushels)
Dade 125 170 143
Immokalee-Lee 99 200 148
Palm Beach 59 187 111
Tomatoes-ground (30 lb.)
Dade 176 450 303
Fort Pierce 125 489 301 9
Immokalee-Lee 155 600 311
Tomatoes-staked (30 lb.)
East Coast 321 1619 729
Immokalee-Lee 585 1140 851 2200
Manatee-Ruskin 354 978 625
Watermelons (cwt.)
Immokalee-Lee 181 452 264 600

Vegetable growers attending field days have heard reports often of
experimental yields on certain crops which appeared at the time to be imposs-
ible to reach under commercial conditions. To their own amazement, many of
these same growers did reach those yield levels within a very few years. The
grower who produced 2,200 boxes of tomatoes recently would have never dreamed
this was possible 10 or 15 years before. Knowing that certain yield levels have
been attained experimentally or commercially should certainly serve as an incen-
tive to every vegetable grower to set his sights toward that goal. To encourage
incentive to attain higher than ever yields, we invite county extension agents,
commercial representatives and growers to report to this office any commercial
yields which they feel might be considered a record for Florida. This information
can be made available periodically to the industry.

B. Tomato Pinworm

Information on tomato pinworm has previously appeared in this newsletter on
identification and suggested controls the growers could use. The initial articles
were brief and limited in scope because a great deal was not known about the insect.


j/. -


Since these early articles, pinworm populations and economic damage have increased
to the point where most tomato growers (and a number of eggplant and potato growers)
have had experience with the pest.

Dr. S. L. Poe, entomologist at the Bradenton Agricultural Research and Educa-
tion Center has recently co-authored a report with Dr. P. H. Everett, Professor,
Agricultural Research Center, Immokalee, and Dr. J. Pat Crill, formerly Associate
Professor, at the Bradenton facility. The report, Bradenton AREC Research Report
GC-1974-8, is entitled "Observations of the Biology and Control of the Tomato Pinworm
in Florida." The report is a summation of what has been noted about the pest during
the last several seasons not only in experimental plots but also in commercial fields
and plant production houses. A brief highlighting of the report follows.

The pinworm was known to occur in Florida, but did not become a serious pro-
blem until the 1972-73 season. What led to the sudden increase in the population?
Dr. Poe writes, "The sudden population increase appears to be the result of altered
cultural practices, intensified plant production and shifts in the nature of chemical
toxicants used for insect control,"

The report relates that the pinworm life cycle follows the pattern, egg to
larva and climaxes in the pupa from which a new adult moth emerges. The authors
report that during the larval portion of the cycle when the larva will molt several
times as it grows in size, "The first stage of growth is spent as a leaf miner and
the second stage usually as a leaf folder or tier. The third and remaining growth
stage larva, however, may choose to enter the stem, vine, a new leaf fold or the
tomato fruit." The entire cycle from egg to adult may require more than two months
and is rarely completed in less than one month.

Insecticides at present are the only means of controlling an established
pinworm population. Selection of the proper materials will depend on the situation
and larval age, moreso than on the materials themselves. For that reason, two sets of
recommendations have been established by Dr. Poe, one for seedling production and one
for field production. The following outline was made of the discussions from the

Seedling Production
1. Where possible, screen plant production houses to keep out adult moths.
2. Eliminate nearby sources of pinworms.
Destroy abandoned fields and fruit to prevent unchecked populations from
spreading into other areas.
3. Destroy volunteer plants around the area which may harbor the insect and
maintain weed-free conditions in and near plant production houses.
4. Hand picking and destruction of local infestations might be feasible.
5. Apply diazinon, endosulfon (Thiodon) or methomyl (Lannate, Nudrin) on a weekly
schedule. "However, the best control was obtained with two applications each
week, one of Thiodon and the other of diazinon." "The rationale for two
applications per week is to provide a toxic residue at all times during the
lengthy life cycle and continuous egg hatch to obtain mortality of newly hatched


Field Production
1. Infested fields can be successfully managed if the fruit can be protected from
the larvae.
2. Weekly applications of one or two insecticides provided sufficient toxic residue
on the foliage at all times to intercept the larva when it abandoned one feeding
site in search of another.
3. Eradication of the population can be achieved if a weekly application schedule is
rigidly followed and no reinfestation occurs.
4. None of the materials are effective on larva in their mines which gives them pro-
tection from the contact materials.
5. Adequate and thorough coverage must be obtained if success is wanted.
6. "Several chemical combinations which gave good control and have eradicated estab-
lished infestations are diazinon + methomyl, endosulfan + phosvel, systox + phosvel,
parathion + methomyl, and guthion + sevin."

The authors summarize their work by stating "Pinworm population control at
the present time is contingent upon (1) sound sanitation practices, and (2) judicious
use of conventional chemicals to maintain a lethal residue on the plants."

*Copies of the mimeo report can be obtained by writing Dr. S. L. Poe at the A.R.E.C
Bradenton facility.

C. Seedling Survival Under Full-Bed Mulch Culture

The most serious problem experienced by growers of tomatoes, peppers, egg-
plants, etc., under full-bed mulch culture is the establishment of uniform stand.
During the months of August, September and October, or any other time when the weather
is hot and dry, excessive soluble salts at the surface of the exposed soil are apt to
kill seedlings or injure them severely enough to reduce yield. Growers must learn to
cope with the problem of "salt kill" of seedlings to be successful with the use of full-
bed mulch culture for production of vegetables. Once seedlings have reached a certain
stage of growth, the expanded root system and hardened stem withstand the high levels
of soluble salts so damaging to plants in the earlier stages of growth.

An understanding of the factors contributing to plant injury from accumulation
of excessive soluble salts at the seedling site of mulched beds permits the grower to
take preventive and/or corrective measures as needed. The primary principle involved
is that fertilizer and other salts move with soil water. Under full-bed mulch culture,
soil water moves upward by capillary action to the exposed soil surface at seedling
sites where it evaporates leaving soluble salts at or near the surface of the soil.
The only exception to this general statement is the downward movement or leaching of
fertilizer salts following a flooding rain.

The aim, therefore, in reducing seedling loss from high soluble salts is to
prevent or reduce accumulation of excessive salts near the seedling. Following are
factors contributing to salt accumulation at the exposed surface and suggestions on
how these factors can be modified to avoid or lessen the effect to the extent that
crops can be grown successfully.



(1) Environmental Conditions Weather and environmental conditions favor-
ing rapid evaporation also favor accumulation of soluble salts at the soil surface.
These conditions are high temperature, bright sunshine, high winds or low humidity.

Where seedlings must be started during hot, dry, windy periods
favoring rapid evaporation, growers can:
(a) Cover the black plastic with a white or aluminum
paint to reflect some of the heat of sun rays.
(b) Irrigate to maintain moisture in plant bed as high
as possible without saturating the soil.
(c) Supply sufficient water (as needed every two or three
days) by hand, cart or overhead sprinkler (not neces-
sary when one-quarter or more inches of rain falls)
to wash the soluble salts down below the root zone
from the surface of the exposed soil at the seedling
(d) Plant seed or place transplants in a hole 1.5 to 2.0
inches deep and 2 inches wide. Planted in this fashion,
seedling roots and stems will not come in contact with
the heavy accumulations of soluble salts found at the
upper perimeter of the hole.

(2) Seedling Age The smaller (or younger) a seedling is the more suscept-
ible it is to soluble salt injury. Put another way, it takes less total soluble salts
to kill a two-day old seedling than it takes to kill one several days older.

The most critical period is that of germination and early seedling
development. Under high evaporative conditions, seedlings may have to be
top-watered as often as every two or three days. Transplants are less sus-
ceptible to injury than direct-seeded crops. Growers using transplants
would be wise to let them size up as much as possible consistent with ease
of handling with mechanical transplanters.

(3) Salt Movement Salts move in soil water which in turn moves by capillar-
ity to the highest point in the bed and to exposed surfaces where it evaporates.
Reciprocally, salts move downward when water moves in that direction under the force
of gravity.

Since salt moves to the highest point in a plant bed (it also moves
to the exposed surface where water evaporates from the soil), it is suggested
that single-row crops be planted on flat-top plant beds. Two-row crops such
as pepper should be planted on a center-crown bed.

(4) Quality of Irrigation Water Soluble salts (primarily sodium and chlorides)
found in irrigation water can contribute significantly to total soluble salt concentra-
tion in soil. When it evaporates, irrigation water leaves its dissolved salts in the

Water to be used for irrigation should be as low as possible
in total soluble salts. Simple and inexpensive lab tests are avail-
able for the determination of water quality. Water with less than


300ppm total soluble salts can be considered good for irrigation.
The higher the level of salts in water, the less desirable it is
for irrigation. Water containing a 1000 ppm soluble salt can be
used only with difficulty.

(5) Method of Irrigation Sub-surface irrigation tends to concentrate
soluble salts at the surface of the soils from which water evaporates.

Sub-surface irrigation, although simple and inexpensive to
use, has the disadvantage of contributing significantly to soluble
salt accumulation at the soil surface. No suggestions can be made
to eliminate this disadvantage completely; however, good management
of the system combined with other suggestions made in this report
will tend to offset most of the problems inherent in the system.

(6) Amount and Uniformity of Soil Moisture Distribution The concentration
of soluble salts in any given spot in the soil of a plant bed is inversely propor-
tional to amount of soil water present. For example, a 50% drop in soil moisture
from field capacity, results in a doubling of total soluble salts.

Maximum efficiency of fertilizer use and best plant growth
can be obtained only by good distribution of moisture throughout
the effective root zone of the plant bed. To obtain this: (a)
soil must be uniform in topography and tilth, (b) the beds must be
uniform in height and adequately pressed, and (c) irrigation and
drainage ditches designed to deliver or remove water rapidly and

(7) Amount of Fertilizer Soluble fertilizers are salts which enter into
the total soluble salt complex of the soil and, therefore, increase concentration
of these salts in the soil solution in proportion, generally, to the amount added.
Use of more fertilizer than necessary to produce a crop is
not only wasteful of materials and money, but it increases the
hazards of soluble salt injury to the crop. The exact amount to
use is hard to determine, but there are good guidelines available
to help growers with the problem. Dr. Paul Everett, after several
seasons testing fertilizer rates, has come up with the following
rules of thumb for tomatoes.
(a) Ground (unstaked) culture 1 or 2 pickings as
mature-green: 120-150 lb N/acre.
(b) Stake culture 4 to 5 pickings as mature-green:
200-250 lb N/acre.
(c) Stake culture 15 or more pickings as vine-ripe:
300-350 lb N/acre.

Potassium (K20), in most cases, can be applied at 1.5 to 2
times the amount of nitrogen. The rate of phosphorus should be deter-
mined from soil test and previous crop history.

Dr. Everett recommends soil testing to determine needs for phos-
phorus. Growers should increase or decrease rates of N and K depending


on cover crop, residual from previous crop, etc. The principle
of determining rate of fertilization based on length of growing
season can be used for other crops.

(8) Sources of Fertilizers Solubility of the sources of fertilizer
used determines the amount of "salts" added to the soil. This is often referred
to as "salt index." It is a relative comparison to sodium nitrate which is assumed
to have a salt-index of 100.
The most desirable materials for fertilization of vegetable
crops from the standpoint of soluble salt problems are the "low
salt-index" materials. These are the materials that contribute
least to soil soluble salt increase per unit of plant food material
applied. For example, a unit each of N and K from a potassium nitrate
source will increase soluble salts to a lesser extent than if supplied
from a combination of sodium nitrate plus potassium chloride.

(9) Placement of Fertilizers Rapidity of movement of soluble salts to ex-
posed area (seedling site) of a full-mulched bed is, in part, determined by placement
of the fertilizer materials.
Research is continuing on the best placement for fertilizer
under full-bed mulch culture. There are several placements which have
been shown to work satisfactorily by researchers and growers as well.
A placement which appears to be gaining favor is: (a) placing a starter
fertilizer (4-8-8 at 500 Ibs. or equivalent amount from other materials)
either (1) broadcast and disked into the soil prior to bed-shaping or
(2) placing the starter fertilizer on a false bed in 30-inch band and
covering with at least 3 inches of soil, and (b) placing the balance of
the fertilizer (1) in two side bands on soil surface at least 9 inches
from the plants on a single-row crop like tomatoes, or (2) in one band
on soil surface in the middle of a two-row crop like pepper.

One other aspect of salt injury that should be mentioned here is the effect of
soil flooding at later stages of growth. Fertilizer placed on the surface or reaching
there by the upward movement of water can be leached downward only when free water
reaches it from flooding conditions. Upon receding, heavy concentration of salts can
be moved down into the root zone where they can cause severe injury. A drainage system
designed to move excess water as rapidly as possible from a full-bed mulched field is
absolutely necessary to avoid loss of a crop during periods of heavy rains.

D. Index for 1973-74 Vegetarian Newsletters

We consider our production season for vegetables to be from July 1 to June 30.
With this, the first issue of the new production season, we are enclosing an index for
the twelve monthly issues of the past season (July 1, 1973 to June 30, 1974).
County Extension Agents wishing to maintain a reference file of the Vegetarian
Newsletter should place last season's issues in a folder together with the index.
When needed, it is a simple matter to check each annual folder for the material desired.


There are on file in this office indexes for the 1971-72 and 1972-73 seasons as well
as a "catch-all" index for the more important articles spanning from the early fifties
to 1971. These are available upon request from this office.


A. Shipping Containers Labeling

This section of the Vegetarian has previously emphasized containers and
standardization of size, shape, and volume. In this issue we would like to emphasize
standardized container labeling. Time and handling are very important in the cost and
quality of fresh vegetables. Both of these items come into play when a commodity is
misrouted due to mistaken identity. Many of the people handling produce at the ware-
house level are not well acquainted with many of the commodities they handle and even
if they were experts,they cannot afford the time to examine each package. What about
containers? Do they give all the required information about what is inside or is most
of the space devoted to trademark and brand name? Remember most consumers never see
the container and the buyer will know whom he purchased from. At the warehouse level
the important thing is to know what is in the box---not who put it there.

The following are recommendations on container labeling as set forth by the
Produce Marketing Association's Container Committee.

1. 65% of the space of at least two sides, preferably four sides,
of all shipping containers used for product identification
information. The remaining 35% used for brand name, shipper
and address. Pictorial illustrations should be de-emphasized
in order to present clear, easy-to-read containers that provide
only information pertinent to the product in the container.
2. Size and/or count information, when required, should always be placed
in the upper left corner. Variety information, when required, should
always be placed in the upper right corner. The recommended placement
of other product identification facts may be found in the several
examples prepared by the PMA Retailer Division Container Committee.

3. Minimum lettering sizes are recommended for all product identification
items, depending upon container size:
Size/count, variety 1/2" minimum
Origin no minimum
Commodity 1/2" minimum
Weight, grade 1/4" minimum
Size/count, variety 3/4" minimum
Origin no minimum
Commodity 3/4" minimum
Weight, grade 1/2" minimum


Size/count, variety 1" minimum
Origin 1/2" minimum
Commodity 1" minimum
Weight, grade 1/2" minimum


A. Timely Gardening Topics

These questions and answers are suggested for your use in developing periodic
(weekly) radio or newspaper briefs. They are based on letters of inquiry from Florida

(1) Timely Topic for week of July 14-20.


What could be causing some of the seeds in my butter bean pods not to develop


Uneven pod fill-out is a common problem on lima beans in Florida, especially
in the summertime. One likely cause for missing beans in an otherwise normal bean
pod is a yeast spot disease called seed pitting. It is spread by the southern green
stinkbug. This insect stings the seed through the pod and sucks out the juices. The
stinkbug may secrete other toxins into the seed causing it to shrivel and abort, if
injured before the seed is half grown. If the puncture comes after the seed is half
grown, it becomes malformed with numerous dark sunken areas on the seed coats.

In addition to insect injury, the usual explanation is to call it an environ-
mentally induced physiological disorder. Environmental stress, such as drought and
extreme high temperatures, occurring at fruit setting time can contribute to the disorder.

(2) Timely Topic for week of July 21-27.


I am an amateur gardener and would like your honest opinion on how successful
I might be with hydroponic gardening?


While hydroponics can be a lot of fun to try, it should be considered a hobby
that involves difficult procedures. It is not as easy as merely following a recipe
of chemicals, for the plants nutrient demands change rapidly as growing conditions
change. Soil usually helps compensate for these changes, but with soil-less culture,
it is left up to the grower's skill to see that chemical adjustments are made as needed.



Therefore, to be highly successful with it, a person needs to be fairly well-trained
technically in order to arrive at and maintain the nutritional needs of the plants
under hydroponic culture. Furthermore, since specialized equipment is involved, don't
overlook the expense factor.

(3) Timely Topic for week of July 28-August 3.


How do I keep the birds from harvesting my tomatoes and strawberries before
I do?


A physical barrier, such as bird netting, is the most effective method of
protecting your garden from birds. Bird netting may be found in many local garden
supply stores. If you have trouble locating it, contact one of the following compan-
ies: (1) Animal Repellants, Inc., Griffin, Georgia 30223; (2) Safety and Industrial
Net co., Dept. B, East Hampton, Connecticut 06424; (3) Fred H. Howe, Box 267, Somer-
ville, New Jersey 08876.

Other devices used to varying degrees of success by gardeners are fake owls,
scarecrows, rattling aluminum pie pans hanging from string, and repellants.

(4) Timely Topic for week of August 4-10.


I thought all tomatoes were red when ripe, until recently I saw what looks
like yellow tomatoes. Do tomatoes come in different colors?


While most commonly preferred tomato fruits are red when ripe, several other
colors are possible. The different colors and shades of the fruits are due to differ-
ent combinations of genes. Red tomatoes have red flesh under yellow peel; pink tomatoes
have red flesh under colorless peel; dark yellow tomatoes have yellow flesh under yellow
peel; pale yellow or lemon tomatoes have yellow flesh under colorless peel; white
tomatoes have very pale yellow flesh under a colorless peel.

(5) Timely Topic for week of August 11-17.


What insects will marigolds repel from my garden?


Marigolds do not actually repel insects or other pests from adjacent plants.
It probably gets this reputation due to its demonstrated relationship with nematodes.
This flowering plant is not a host for the root knot nematode, one of the most serious
pests we encounter on vegetables. In practical terms, this means a gardener could grow


marigolds as a cover crop in his garden plot as a control measure for root knot
nematodes. Since the root knot nematode would be without a plant to live on,
populations in time could be reduced.

B. Know Your Vegetables Casaba Melon

The Casaba Melon (Cucumis melo Var. inodorus) belongs to a group of melons
called winter melons, which also includes the Honey Dew type. They are closely related
to netted melons which we commonly call cantaloupes (Cucumis melo Var. reticulatus).
All the melons within the melo species are known as muskmelons.

The Casaba is a native of Asia minor. Most commercial production of Casabas
is located in the Southwestern U.S., particularly California. In Florida it is grown
only in home gardens, and not often even there. The main drawbacks in this state are
that it is late maturing (120 days), which makes it ripen in our hot, wet months of
early summer. Since it is susceptible to leaf diseases, most gardeners have poor luck
with it, although a few have been fairly successful.

The Casaba melon grows on a vine similar to a cantaloupe. While about the same
size, fruits are not netted like the cantaloupes, nor smooth like the Honey Dews.
Instead, they are profusely marked with deep wrinkles (longitudinal corrugations). Skin
color varies with the variety. Golden Beauty fruits are pointed at the stem end, with
green skin that turns to yellow at maturity. The Crenshaw variety produces a slightly
wrinkled, dark green fruit that turns pale yellow-tan at maturity. Winter Pineapple is
light green even when mature. Santa Claus is much longer than thick (almost cylindrical),
fairly smooth-skinned, and colored with blotches of black and yellow.

Flesh of Casabas is usually thick, and either white, yellow or orange colored.
Although sweet flavored, as a rule the flesh is not as sweet as a Honey Dew. Casabas
do not have the musky odor and flavor of the cantaloupes. Fruits do not "slip" from
the vine at maturity; rather they are harvested by cutting the stem when the melons are
reasonably mature and held in storage until the blossom end becomes soft.

In Florida, culture would be the same as for cantaloupes. Time of planting
would be similar (February March), although maturity would be later. A good fungi-
cide spray program is encouraged since leaf diseases are to be expected.


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