INSTITUTE OF FOOD AND
UNIVERSITY OF FLORIDA
A Vegetable Crops Extension Publication
Vegetable Crops Department* 1255 lHSPP Gainesville. FL 32611 Telephone 392-2134
October 12, 1984
I. NOTES OF INTEREST
Vegetable Crops Deparment Faculty Changes
Vegetable Crops Calendar
II. COMMERCIAL VEGETABLE PRODUCTION
A. Florida Strawberry Production Current
B. Alternative Fungicide Programs for Snap Beans
Going to Canada
C. National Agricultural Plastics Congress
D. Domestic Farming Systems Conference
III. HOME VEGETABLE PRODUCTION
A. Vegetable specimen garden at the University of
Anyone is free to use the information in this newsletter.
Whenever possible, please give credit to the authors.
The use of trade names in this publication is solely for
the purpose of providing information and does not
necessarily constitute a recommendation of the product.
The Institute of Food and Agripultural Sciences is an Equal Employment Opportunity Affirmative Action Employer authorized to provide research,
educational information and other services only to individuals and institutions that function without regard to race, color, sex, or national origin.
COOPERATIVE EXTENSION WORK IN AGRICULTURE AND HOME ECONOMICS. STATE OF FLORIDA, IFAS, UNIVERSITY OF
FLORIDA. U. S. DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE, AND BOARDS OF COUNTY COMMISSIONERS COOPERATING
I. NOTES OF INTEREST
A. Vegetable Crops Department Faculty Changes
There have been several recent changes in faculty appointments in
Steve Kovach resigned from his Extension Water Management Spe-
cialist position on June 29. Steve is now in Pakistan as a Water
Management Specialist on a USAID-funded project. We wish him well in
this new endeavor. This position, located at the Gulf Coast REC, has
been transferred to the Agricultural Engineering Department, and they
are in the process of filling it now.
George Marlowe has requested reassignment from his Extension Veg-
etable Specialist position to Plant Science Coordinator with the
USAID-UF project in the Camaroons. George is now involved in French
training and orientation in preparation for departure about January 1.
He will be missed but we are sure that he will make major contribu-
tions in this assignment.
J. K. Brecht was appointed as Assistant Professor, Postharvest
Physiology on June 1, 1984. Jeff will have undergraduate teaching,
graduate advising and research responsibilities. He is a native
Californian with a BS degree from Whittier College and a PhD from the
University of California-Davis. We welcome Jeff to Florida.
G. J. Hochmuth was appointed as Assistant Professor and Vegetable
Extension Specialist on August 24, 1984. He will coordinate vegetable
extension programs in Districts II and III and will have state-wide
responsibilities for fertilizer and soil management recommendations.
George is a native of Maryland and received his BS at the University
of Maryland. He earned his PhD from the University of Wisconsin and
has been on the faculty of the University of Massachusetts since 1981.
We are very pleased to have George join our Florida vegetable
C. E. Vallejos has been appointed Assistant Professor, Physiolog-
ical Genetics. He will join the Department about February 1, 1985.
Eduardo is a native of Peru and received his BS from La Molina. He
earned his MS and PhD at the University of California-Davis and
completed postdoctoral training there, Stanford University, and New
Mexico State University. We welcome Eduardo to the Department.
(Maynard Veg. 84-10)
B. New Publications
Pepper Variety Trial Results, IMM 84-4 by P. H. Everett and K. A.
Armbrester is available from the Immokalee AREC, Route 1, Box 2G,
Immokalee, FL 33934.
SH-2 Sweet Corn Cultivar Trial Zellwood, Florida, SAN Research
Report 85-3 by J. M. White is available from the Central Florida
Research and Education Center, P.O. Box 909 Sanford, FL 32771.
Efficacy of Selected Fungicides Against Snap Bean Rust:
Alternative Programs Compatable With Canadian Fungicide Tolerances.
Homestead TREC Res. Rept. SB 84-1; by Ken Pohronezny, Joyce Francis,
and J. S. Reynolds, Tropical Research and Education Center. 18904
S.W. 280 St. Homestead, FL 33031.
Cucurbit variety evaluation 1984. LBG 84-7, by G. W. Elmstrom.
available from Leesburg AREC, P.O. Box 388, Leesburg, FL 32748.
First Five Years of the Florida Master Gardener Program. 1984.
by J. M. Stephens, 1255 Fifield Hall, Univ. of Florida Gainesville,
C. Vegetable Crops Calendar
1. Nov. 4-7, 1984. Florida State Hort. Soc. (FSHS) Doral Hotel,
Miami Beach, FL.
2. Nov. 6, 1984. Vegetable Industry Breakfast, FSHS meeting, Doral
Hotel, Miami Beach. The breakfast is held to increase
communication and fellowship among researchers, growers,
shippers, allied industry, and other professionals concerned with
Florida vegetables. Tickets for the Tuesday breakfast will cost
$ 11.00 per person, available near the FSHS registration desk or
from Vegetable Crops staff. Please plan to attend.
3. Nov. 29, 1984. Annual Allied Industry workshop. 9:30 a.m. -
3:30 p.m. Manatee County Extension Office, 1303 17th st. -
Palmetto, FL. Person in charge: Dr. Phyllis Gilreath (813)
4. January 29-31 Commercial Vegetable Crops In Service Training
for Extension Agents. Theme: IPM. Dade Co. Extension Center,
18710 S.W. 288th St. Homestead, FL.
5. February 6 Strawberry Field Day. 2-5 p.m. Dover AREC
(Hillsborough County) Dover, FL.
II. COMMERCIAL VEGETABLE PRODUCTION
A. Florida Strawberry Production Current Situation
The Crop Reporting Board, USDA recently released data on the
1983-84 strawberry production season. As expected, the
devastating Christmas freeze drastically restricted yield per
acre and total production. The freeze also greatly restricted
production during the January-February period when prices are
usually at their highest. Consequently, the seasonal price was
substantially lower than in 1983. Lower yields, production and
prices, all contributed to the lower crop value in 1984.
Area, Yield, Production and Value of Florida
Strawberries in 1983 and 1984
1983 1984 Difference
Planted Acres 5,400 5,200 200
Harvested Acres 5,400 5,100 300
Yield per Acre (cwt) 190 170 20
Production (1000 cwt) 1,026 867 159
Value per cwt $51.20 $44.70 -$6.50
Total Value ($1000) $52,531 $38,755 -$13,776
Despite a very disappointing season, Florida maintained a distant, but
strong second place in national strawberry production. California
continued as the most important strawberry producing state with 13,300
acres, an average yield of 570 cwt/acre and a total crop value of
about $309 million. Oregon was the third most important strawberry
producing state with 6,600 harvested acres, an average yield of 92
cwt/acre and a crop value of about $15 million. Other important
strawberry producing states in 1984 were Michigan, Washington, and New
With transplanting for the 1984-85 crop in progress, it is too
early to speculate on the future. However, good growing weather will
be extremely important in helping the industry recover from the
(Maynard Veg. 84-10)
B. Alternative Fungicide Programs for Snap Beans Going to Canada
Snap beans shipped from Florida, entering Canada with residues of
ethylene bis-dithiocarbamate (EBDC) greater than 0.1 ppm are
considered to adulterated and are returned. (See Vegetarian 83-05).
The commonly available EBDC fungicides include maneb, mancozeb and
zineb. During the "rust" season these are usually tank mixed with
sulfur for increased efficacy, and sprayed every 5-7 days. The low
Canadian tolerance eliminates full season EDBC field use on Florida
beans since growers cannot determine the final destination of their
beans after selling to brokers. A substantial portion (10 13%) of
beans go to Canada.
Ken Pohronezny, Joyce Francis and James Reynolds have studied
alternative control programs comparable with Canadian fungicide
tolerances (TREC Research Report SB 84-1, see "New Publications").
In their tests they compared chlorothalonil (Bravo 500) at 2
rates (1.25 and 2.5 Ib ai/A) Mancozeb + Sulfur switched to
chlorothalonil at flowering, 2 rates of Bitertanol (Baycor 50wp at
0.125, & 0.25), and Triadimefon (Bayleton 50 wp at 0.125 and 0.25 lb.
ai/A). Triadimefon and Bitertanol are not registered for the crop at
Their data showed that all fungicide treatments reduced rust
levels. For the most part, using mancozeb and sulfur up to flowering
and then switching to chlorothalonil as a weekly spray was
statistically equal to mancozeb and sulfur treatments.
For the mancozeb/sulfur full-season treatments, Canadian
tolerances of 0.1 ppm EDBC were exceeded for every residue sample.
When mancozeb/sulfur was discontinued in favor of 2.5 lb ai/A
chlorothalanil at flowering, the Canadian tolerances were never
The approximate comparative costs per acre per crop season for
the several labelled treatments as figured by the authors were:
2.5 Ib. ai Chlorathalonil only $ 76.14/a
1.25 lb. ai Chlorothalonil only $ 38.07/a
mancozeb/sulfur tank-mix only $ 25.56/a
mancozeb/sulfur switched to 2.5 lb. ai
chlorothalonil at flowering $ 50.85/a
The authors state that this is a preliminary report and more testing
is needed to ensure that the 1.25 ai. chlorothalonil treatment will be
consistently efficacious. Therefore they stated "BASED ON CANADIAN
RESIDUE REQUIREMENTS, RUST CONTROL, EFFICACY, AND ECONOMICS, USE OF AN
EDBC COMPOUND (SUCH AS MANEB) TANK-MIXED WITH SULFUR UNTIL FLOWERING,
FOLLOWED BY 2.5 lb. A.I. CHLOROTHALONIL UNTIL THE P.H.I. PRELIMINARILY
REPRESENTS THE MOST VIABLE ALTERNATIVE FUNGICIDE PROGRAM FOR BEAN
GROWERS SHIPPING TO CANADA."
The results of the sterol inhibitor fungicides are also discussed
in the paper.
For a full explanation of factors involved, the research report
can be requested from the authors.
(Stall Veg. 84-10)
C. National Agricultural Plastics Congress
The 18th Congress was held October 2-4 in Asheville, North
Carolina and was hosted by North Carolina State University. Workers
representing all phases of plastic manufacture and use in agriculture
met for 3 days to review present research and discuss future
applications of agricultural plastics.
A large portion of the research papers presented dealt with row
covers for enhancing early and total vegetable production. Most of
the covers discussed were approximately 36" wide and 15"- 18" high
covering a single row or bed of plants. They are made of wire hoops
and usually a clear polyethylene covering. A newer non-woven
polyester or polypropylene material also can be used often omitting
the hoops. For automatic venting, the polyethylene covers can be
perforated or slitted.
Research from northern states with muskmelons, squashes, peppers,
tomatoes and beans showed increases in early and total yields from the
use of both poly and nonwoven covers. These experiments have led to
widespread use of row covers by growers in the north particularly New
England. Row cover research in more southern areas has not been as
consistently favorable. Although early yield is enhanced, total
production sometimes is not increased.
Several papers were presented on the use of plastic mulch for
vegetable production. Some of the research dealt with the use of row
covers in conjunction with the mulch. In order to take advantage of
the mulch and row cover effects on production, several associated
technologies are being researched. These include irrigation, weed
control, and mineral nutrition in addition to the mechanization of
mulch and cover application and removal.
In the greenhouse area, papers were presented on increasing the
efficiency of plant production with the use of automated watering
systems, computer environmental controls, and automatic conveyor bench
Presentations by industry personnel revealed some developing
technologies for agricultural plastics including experimental energy
conserving greenhouse coverings and sprayable synthetic mulches for
greenhouse or field use. Of particular interest is the developing
technology of plastic film manufacturing. Newer films will be much
stronger and tear resistant than present polyethylene. These new
films can be made with less resin thereby reducing the thickness to
0.75 mil. and potentially reduce the cost.
In addition to the research presentations, a trade show
consisting of more than 20 exhibitors displayed many agricultural
products including irrigation equipment, greenhouse soilless mixes,
mulches, and row covers. Machines on display included a fumigator and
mulch applicator and a row cover construction implement. A useful
liquid injector wheel for fertilizing through plastic mulch also was
The importance of plastics in agriculture is increasing with new
developments being made. The increased use of row covers is one of
the most rapidly expanding areas. A detailed discussion of row cover
technology for vegetable production including results from research in
Florida will appear in next month's Vegetarian.
(Hochmuth Veg. 84-10)
D. Domestic Farming Systems Conference
On September 10-13, a Domestic Farming Systems Conference was
held in the Reitz Union sponsored by IFAS, Farming Systems Support
Project (FSSP). Speakers from around the country discussed their
farming systems projects, their policies, and infrastructure of
Farming Systems Research/Extension. Farming Systems embodies the
original concept of Extension: that the entire farm family and their
needs are addressed, including social, economic and cultural factors
influencing the agricultural environment. The Farming Systems project
of Virginia Polytechnical Institute, for example, involved the
introduction of broccoli production through on-farm trials as a
replacement crop for tobacco in Southwest Virginia. Campus
Horticulture specialists, agricultural technicians, Extension agents
and local para-professionals were involved in "adapting existing
tobacco transplanters and milk cooling equipment to high-density
broccoli production, developing new market channels for the broccoli
and introducing home broccoli preservation and use in meals".
The North Florida (Suwannee and Columbia Counties) Farming
Systems Project involves primarily agronomic crop-livestock systems,
although efforts in horticultural commodity production have been
discussed. Farming Systems Research/Extension linkage can be
facilitated through increased on-farm testing with disciplinary input
and involvement of Extension in the trials and results. The FSSP
office in McCarty Hall carries slide sets and reference material for
anyone interested in their work.
(Delate Veg. 84-10)
III. Vegetable Gardening
A. Vegetable specimen garden at the University of Florida
During the fall of each of the past-three years (1981-1983), and
again this fall, Dr. M. B. Lazin of the Vegetable Crops Department has
grown a specimen demonstration garden. It contains over 300 cultivars
of approximately 150 different kinds of vegetables.
Mike has reported on his garden in the proceedings of the Florida
State Hort. Soc. Vol. 96:167-172. 1983. This is a condensed version
of that report with some of my own comments for the purpose of this
The main purpose of the garden is to serve as an undergraduate
teaching tool. However, it has proven to be useful in research and
extension as well. In extension work, we find it very valuable for
teaching groups of agents, vo-ag teachers, Master Gardeners, Urban
Gardening aides, FFA students, and 4-H members about vegetables. We
use the plots for television, video, slides, and photographing, as
well as for developing information for publications. Obviously, the
plantings of so many common and uncommon types and varieties of
vegetables in one location provides us all with the opportunity to
see, touch, and taste living specimens throughout their growth cycles.
How the garden was planted
The garden is grown in the fall near Fifield Hall (the
Horticultural Science building) on the campus of the University of
Florida at Gainesville.
The main planting is organized in 5 rows, 250 feet long spaced 10
feet apart. Plants were spaced 3 to 5 feet within the rows. In early
August, 2000 lb./acre of 6-8-8 fertilizer was applied and rototilled
into each bed before covering with black plastic mulch. Vegetables
were then direct seeded or transplanted through the mulch over the
next several weeks.
A separate area along a chain-link fence was utilized for vining
crops that required trellising. A third area near the greenhouse was
set aside for a permanent planting of perennial species.
Each different vegetable was identified by common and scientific
name plainly labeled on an aluminum garden marker.
Labor requirements Anyone attempting such a display garden should
be prepared to provide a considerable amount of intensive labor for
all of the cultural requirements of such a wide range of plant types.
Harvest labor is not a factor since specimens are best left to be
observed. The use of black plastic mulch proved beneficial to most
all the crops planted, and greatly reduced the labor requirements for
weeding and fertilizing.
Environmental concerns Most of the vegetables were planted in the
garden during August and September when high temperatures and high
rainfall combined to make harsh conditions for seedling development.
This difficulty was overcome by growing containerized transplants in a
peat-lite soil mix in a greenhouse and transplanting most of the
crops, including many that are not ordinarily transplanted. For those
that were direct-seeded, the plug-mix system was generally used to
help in stand establishment.
Diseases and insects Many of the minor crops were notably lacking in
disease resistance. For example, many of the tropical cucurbits grew
quite vigorously for two months, then degenerated rapidly due to
Insect pressures were intense, particularly from caterpillars.
These problems were aggravated by a lack of pesticides that are
labelled for use on minor crops, and by the inability to spray
routinely due to public exposure. However, much was learned about
pest tolerence and susceptibility of the many species exhibited.
Concentrated maturity This characteristic, so valuable in mechanized
agriculture, is a distinct disadvantage in a specimen demonstration
garden. Some of this was off-set by sequential planting, by planting
cultivars of differing maturity dates, and by continuous picking to
prolong the setting of fruit.
Adaptability of crops Although a wide range of species was grown
successfully in the garden, certain crops proved to be poorly adapted
to the north Florida area, especially perennial plants such as
asparagus, rhubarb, and globe artichoke. Some that are adapted, such
as okra and watermelon, did not attain full development in the fall
planting at Gainesville. However, these and other were included to
demonstrate basic plant growth.
Special problems Certain crops are by their nature not well suited
to planting in a specimen garden, at least in the manner planted here.
For example, single plants of sweet corn resulted in poor pollination
and ear development. Root crops obviously have to be destroyed to
demonstrate their productivity, so several plants of each cultivar
have to be grown. Special permission must be obtained for some
prohibited crops, such as kangkong, due to a possibility that the
plant might become a weed or other pest problem.
Vandalism and theft Such a display garden draws a lot of observers,
both authorized and otherwise, resulting in some destruction. Thus,
more security measures must be taken than for an ordinary garden.
Seed sources While it had been anticipated that sources for the
minor vegetables would be difficult to find, the vast majority of
cultivars were simply ordered from seed company catalogs or at garden
supply stores. Some company catalogs specialize in unusual
vegetables. However, some hard-to-find planting materials had to be
obtained from research centers (AREC), USDA Plant Introduction
Centers, private collectors, botanical gardens, and the local produce
Results Table 1 of Lazin's report lists the crops grown, their
scientific names, and their performance rating. Due to the length of
that table, it is not included here. The reader is referred to the
FSHS proceedings for these results.
(Stephens Veg. 84-10)
Prepared by Extension Vegetable Crops Specialists
D. N. Maynard
G. J. Hochmuth
fJ. M. Stephens
Visiting Ext. Agent I
S. M. Olson
W. M. Stall