INSTITUTE OF FOOD AND FLORIDA
AGRICULTURAL SCIENCES COOPERATIVE
UNIVERSITY OF FLORIDA EXTENSION SERVICE
UNIVERSITY OF FLORIDA Y VI A Q IA N
A Vegetable Crops Extension Publication
/'7fl tt *Ml^^ ^^ ^M--^ ^^^ ^^--- ^ 1^ ^^ ^^
Vegetable Crops Department 1253 Fifield Hall Gainesville,FL 32611* Telephone 392-2134
Vegetarian 91-10 October 10, 1991
I. NOTES OF INTEREST
I A. Vegetable Crops Calendar.
S^ B. New Publications
C. Vegetable Crops Library
II. COMMERCIAL VEGETABLES
A. Broccoli Variety Trial Results, Sanford 1991.
B. International Symposium to Feature
Commercialization of Specialty Vegetables.
C. Improving Tomato Packing Efficiency.
S9III PESTICIDE UPDATE
A. EPA Proposed Definition of Melons and
S_ -_-_. __.- B. Summer Squash Defined.
IV. VEGETABLE GARDENING
-j: -A. National Junior Horticultural Association Florida
Note: Anyone is free to use the information in this newsletter.
^ & 'U Whenever possible, please give credit to the authors. The
S, purpose of trade names in this publication is solely for the
purpose of providing information and does not necessarily
S*-- constitute a recommendation of the product.
The Institute of Food and Agricultural 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, age, handicap 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 Calendar.
October 25-29, 1991. National
Junior Horticulture Association
Convention. Altamonte Springs. (Contact
Bob Renner, Marion Co. Extension Agent).
October 29-31, 1991. Florida State
Horticultural Society (FSHS). 104th
Anniversary, Doral Ocean Beach Resort,
Miami Beach, FL.
March 5-6, 1992. Postharvest
Horticulture Institute. University Centre
Hotel, Gainesville. (Contact Steve
Mrrch 9-12, 1992. Harvest and
Postharvest Handling of Horticultural
Crops. Tour of Central and South Florida.
(Contact Steve Sargent).
March 15-19, 1992. Second
International Symposium on Specialty and
Exotic Vegetable Crops. Miami (contact
B. New Publications.
Clark, Gary A., May 1991. Water
Management for Drip Irrigated
Strawberries. GCREC Bradenton Research
Clark, Gary A., May 1991.
Principles of Chemigation. GCREC
Bradenton Research Report, BRA-1991-9.
Prevatt, J. Walter, April 1991.
Florida Strawberry Production Costs and
Returns. Bradenton GCREC Research
Howe, T. K. and W. E. Waters,
March 1991. Cabbage Cultivar Evaluation
in West-Central Florida During 1990-91.
Bradenton GCREC Research Report
Howe, T. K and W. E. Waters,
March 1991. Bell Pepper Cultivar Trial for
Fall 1990. Bradenton GCREC Research
Howe, T. K, J. W. Scott and W. E.
Waters, February 1991. Tomato Cultivar
Trial Results for Fall 1990. Bradenton
GCREC Research Report BRA1991-4.
Howe, T. K., J. W. Scott and W. E.
Waters, July 1991. Tomato Variety Trial
Results for Spring 1991. Bradenton
Research Report BRA1991-13.
C. Vegetable Crops Library.
New books on vegetable crops or
books that contain considerable
information on vegetables are noted in this
column from time-to-time:
MARKETING FRESH FRUITS AND
VEGETABLES. R. Brian How. An AVI
Book, Von Nostrand Reinhold Division of
Thomson Publishing Corporation, 7625
Empire Drive, Florence, KY 41042. 1991.
357 p. illus. $44.95, hard cover. ISBN 0-
Almost every fruit and vegetable
grower will tell you that marketing is the
most frustrating and weakest link in their
operation. Will this book help to ease their
frustration and provide them with the
information needed to market their crops?
Yes and no.
As one of a very few books on fruit
and vegetable marketing, it is a welcome
addition for both horticulturists and
economists. It evolved from the author's
15 years of experience in teaching an
undergraduate course on the topic, and
this provides insight to the answer to the
question posed previously.
The book is divided into four
unequal sections. Part 1 deals with
markets, sources, and the marketing
system. Part 2 covers the market
environment focusing on market
information. Marketing operations and
firms are discussed in Part 3. A concise
epilogue that summarizes the author's
thoughts on prospects of the industry is
the concluding Part 4.
VEGETABLE PRODUCTION TRAINING
MANUAL. AVRDC. WinrockInternational
Agribookstore, 1611 North Kent Street,
Arlington, VA 22209-2134. 1990. 447 p.
illus. $37.50, soft cover. ISBN 92-9058-039-
Very useful information on practical
vegetable production, mostly for developing
countries, is provided in a convenient and
concise form. The value, usefulness, and
classification of vegetables is covered in the
first chapter followed by chapters on
growth and development and
environmental influences on vegetable
production. The following three chapters
are devoted to variety development and
testing, seed production, and seed testing.
Crop, soil, and water management are the
focus of the next three chapters. The
tenth chapter, almost 25% of the book,
covers pe3t management. Mechanization,
postharvest technology and economics are
included in the final three chapters. The
book is amply illustrated with line drawings
and colored pictures.
PLANT ANALYSIS HANDBOOK. J. B.
Jones, Jr., B. Wolf, and H. A. Mills. Micro-
Macro Publishing, Inc., 183 Paradise Blvd.,
Suite 108, Athens, GA 30607. 1991. 213
p. illus. $69.95, hard cover. ISBN 1-
Tables of elemental composition for
over 302 horticultural and agronomic crop
plants are featured in this book. In
addition, there are chapters on essential
elements, plant tissue sampling, sample
preparation and analysis, interpretations,
applications, factors affecting composition,
and tissue testing. The appendix provides
laboratory procedures of analysis.
If availability of funds permits, all of
these books will be welcome and useful
additions to your Vegetable Crops library.
(Maynard, Vegetarian 91-10)
II. COMMERCIAL VEGETABLES
A. Broccoli Variety Trial
Results. Sanford 1991.
So few acres of broccoli are grown in
Florida the Florida Agricultural Statistics
Vegetable Summary does not include any
data. There has been an increase in the
acreage in the Zellwood area in the past
two years with some potential for more
expansion. Zellwood area production is
estimated to be about 140 acres with a
value of $380,700.
The following is a summary of 22
cultivars and/or breeding lines of broccoli
evaluated for marketable yield in central
Florida. Seedbeds were sown January 9,
1991. Seven lines, Galleon, Sultan,
Augusta, Gaelic Pride, Early Emerald,
Ninja, and Premium Crop had to be
replanted on January 17 due to animal
damage of the seedbed. Seedlings were
transplanted to a Myakka fine sand on
February 28. Single row plots 25' by 2.5'
with in-row spacing of 11" were replicated
four times. Harvests were on May 1, 10,
and 17. Yield was considerably lower than
normal. More rainfall than normal for
March and April (16.3 in) may have
contributed to lower yields. Only Sprinter,
of the five top yielding entries, had both
good head color and shape. Galleon
produced attractive heads with medium
bead size, but yield was significantly less
than Sprinter. The early varieties of Ninja,
Gaelic Pride, and Early Emerald had
acceptable yields in relation to Sprinter,
but their head shape and color were poor.
Table 1 is a summary of 11 selected
varieties. A more complete report may be
obtained by requesting Research Report
SAN 92-02, Broccoli Cultivar Trial, 1991.
Table 1. Selected varieties from the spring broccoli trials, CFREC-Sanford, 1991.
Variety Seed Source Crates/A (lb) Comments
Sprinter Sakata 225 0.47 good color & appearance
So. Comfort Am. Takii 203 0.53 uneven heads
Brigadier Petoseeds 194 0.48 uneven heads
Pinnacle Am. Takii 126 0.65 uneven, pale green
Sultan Sakata 122 0.48 uneven, poor color
Headline Am. Takii 116 0.48 uneven heads
Galleon Petoseeds 113 0.41 some flowers
Augusta Amsa 110 0.59 uneven heads
Ninja Sakata 105 0.43 uneven, poor color
Gaelic Pride Am. Takii 101 0.44 poor color
Galleon Abbott & Cobb 85 0.34 good appearance
(White, Vegetarian 91-10)
B. International Symposium to
Feature Commercialization of
A special session on
commercialization of specialty vegetables
will be featured at the Second
International Symposium on Specialty and
Exotic Vegetable Crops. The Symposium
will be held on 15-19 March 1992 in Miami,
at the Sheraton Brickell Point Hotel. It is
sponsored by the International Society for
Horticultural Science in cooperation with
the American Society for Horticultural
Science and the Interamerican Society for
Tropical Horticulture. The Center for
Tropical Agriculture at the University of
Florida, Florida Agricultural Experiment
Station, Florida Fruit and Vegetable
Association, and Florida Seedsmen and
Garden Supply Association are co-sponsors.
Karen Caplan, President of Frieda's,
Inc. of Los Angeles will discuss her firm's
leadership role in marketing exotics. The
development and marketing of branded
specialty vegetables will be discussed by
David Marguleas, Vice-President of Sun
World, Indio, CA. Sun World is well known
for it's seedless watermelon, DiVine
tomato, and La Rouge Royale and La Jaune
Royale peppers. Exotic tropical vegetables
will be addressed by Bill Schaefer of J. R.
Brooks & Sons, Inc., Homestead, FL.
Although ethnic consumers constitute the
bulk of Brook's current sales, there are
great opportunities for mainstreaming
many of these tropical treats. Another
aspect of commercializing specialty
vegetables will be covered by Leo Zanoni of
Asgrow Seed Company, Kalamazoo, MI. He
will review the development and promotion
work being done by Asgrow on colored
peppers, seedless watermelons, cukettes,
and other vegetables.
In addition to the commercialization
session, researchers and extension
specialists from around the world will
report on breeding and other genetic
improvements, culture, pest management,
postharvest handling, and marketing of
specialty and exotic vegetables.
Other special features of the
Symposium are two half-day field tours of
specialty vegetable production in the
Homestead area and in eastern Palm Beach
For more information contact
Donald N. Maynard, Gulf Coast Research
and Education Center, 5007 60th St. East,
Bradenton, FL 34203, (813) 751-7636, FAX
(813) 751-7639. The deadline for receiving
pre-registrations and abstracts is 31
(Maynard, Vegetarian 91-10)
C. Improving Tomato Packing
Commercial tomato packing lines
are designed to allow managers to maintain
packouts with the highest quality despite
quality differences between incoming lots
of tomatoes or shortages of grading
personnel. The individual components of
conventional packing lines (such as the
wash brushes, sort rolls, grade rolls, size
belts) are designed to operate at a fixed
speed for an average volume. The only
means of changing the volume is to vary
the dump rate.
There are three problems associated
with fixed-speed packing lines. When the
bins are dumped at a slow rate, the packing
line is underfilled. Underfilling can
increase bruising and other mechanical
injuries by allowing excessive fruit-to-fruit
impacts and fruit-to-conveyor impacts at
the numerous transfer points. When the
bins are dumped at a fast rate,
overcrowding can occur and result in
ineffective removal of undersize fruit, poor
washing, waxing and grading.
The third drawback of fixed-speed
packing lines is the tendency of workers to
remove product at a fixed rate. When the
line is running at low capacity, the amount
removed per worker is determined by the
number of fruit which can be picked up,
regardless of quality. However, when the
line is running at high capacity, the
amount removed is determined by the
number of fruit which the person can
observe. In other words, at low capacity
workers try to appear busy by removing
product, while at high capacity they tend
to reject fruit based on the quality.
Therefore, the ideal packing line would
synchronize the speed of the components
with the dump rate so as to maintain
nearly full capacity at all times. This
would permit workers to properly grade
fruit, resulting in improved packout and
reduced costs. Operation at full capacity
also lowers impacts at many transfer points
by reducing roll distances down transfer
A Variable-Speed Tomato Packing Line
The packing line at Tomatoes of
Ruskin (Ruskin, Florida) was retrofitted
with a computer-controlled system which
allows the line speed to change in
conjunction with the dump rate. It also
integrates an on-line auditing system for
packout inventory. This system was
designed to be economically retrofitted to
many packing lines using commercially
available and reliable equipment. Drs. Bill
Miller and Richard Gilbert, engineers at
the University of South Florida, Tampa,
designed the system. A programmable
controller module was installed in the
packinghouse which provides speed control
for the various components of the main
grading line, beginning with the elevator
rolls and ending with the grading table.
Variable frequency drives were installed on
the existing drive motors for each of the
During packing the grading
supervisor controls the dump rate and the
speed of the packing line components using
a thumb wheel located at the grading table.
The audit system provides immediate
information on quality, grade and size for
each lot packed and continuous
information on daily packout totals. This
system consists of micro switches, photo-
sensitive eyes and position sensors
connected to the packinghouse's computer.
Productivity and Quality Benefits
A comparison of hourly packout
before and 2 years after implementation of
the system showed an increase of 35% in
the number of boxes packed per hour. In
addition to maintaining a higher capacity
over the range of dump rates, the system
also reduces the time between grower lots
by allowing the packing line speed to be
increased during this "dead time". Printed
copies of packout information are given to
accounting and to the ripening room
supervisor, electronic copies are available
to management and brokers. Increases in
productivity also resulted in the offering of
wage incentives to packinghouse workers.
Peak impacts were determined for
transfer points on the packing line using
an Instrumented Sphere data logger. The
analyses were made during four dump
rates: 80, 100, 130 and 200 bins/hour. We
determined that the speeds of the dryer
brushes and the size belts were better
correlated with the dump rates of 130 and
200 bins/hour than the slower dump rates.
At the faster dump rates these 2 transfer
points had fewer impacts and lower
intensities. This confirmed visual
observations that the percent line coverage
was higher at the two faster dump rates
than at the slower dump rates. With more
tomatoes covering the transfer plates at
these two points, the roll distance was less;
therefore, the transfer was more gentle.
Mature green tomatoes were
sampled at each of the dump rates, from
the float tank and on the grading rolls
after final grading but prior to transfer to
the size belts. These tomatoes were rated
for incidence of internal bruising (IB) after
reaching the red ripe stage. For tomatoes
sampled at 80 bins/hour, 22% had IB after
final grading, while those sampled at 100
bins/hour had 14% IB. Tomatoes sampled
at 130 and 200 bins/hour had negligible
amounts of IB. There was a slight increase
in external bruises and cuts/punctures at
the two faster dump rates; however, these
values were not sufficiently high to affect
The modifications made so far to
the packing line have greatly improved
productivity, since the packing line speed
can be quickly adjusted to match the
quality of the tomatoes being packed.
Further details of this system are available
in the article by Sargent et al. in the
Proceedings of the 1991 Florida Tomato
(Sargent, Vegetarian 91-10)
IH. PESTICIDE UPDATE
A. EPA Proposed Definition of
Melons and Muskmelons.
The Environmental Protection
agency (EPA) has published in the Federal
Register (Vol 56, No. 171/Wednesday,
September 4, 1991) a proposed rule that
would more clearly define for regulatory
and research purposes the terms "melon"
and adds the category "muskmelon".
Muskmelon now is defined for
regulatory purposes: Cucumis melo
(includes true cantaloupes, cantaloupe,
casaba, Santa Claus melon, crenshaw
melon, honeydew melon, honey balls,
Persian melon, golden pershaw melon,
mango melon, pineapple melon, snake
melon, and other varieties and/or hybrids
In the U.S. the terms "muskmelon"
and "cantaloupe" are used interchangeably.
The varieties of Cucumis melo are
botanically and culturally similar. The
plants are annuals, trailing, and vinelike.
Climate and growing conditions for all
muskmelons are similar. Similar pest
problems should be expected, and control
of such pests should be similar regardless
of the melon variety. It is reasonably
expected that when equal amounts of
pesticides are applied to any of the
muskmelons for control of a common pest,
the residue levels will be similar.
For regulatory and tolerance
purposes the term "melon" then includes:
muskmelons including hybrids and/or
varieties of Cucumis melo (as defined
above) and watermelons including hybrids
and/or varieties of (Citrullus spp).
If I interpret this correctly, when
the rule comes into affect the term
"muskmelon" on a label will include all
Cucumis melo hybrids and varieties as
stated and the term "melon" will encompass
both muskmelons (as defined) and
watermelons. The Interregional Research
Project No. 4 (IR-4) requested this action
for the purpose of establishing tolerances.
(Stall, Vegetarian 91-10)
B. Summer Squash Defined.
The term "summer squash" has a
proposed rule change found in the same
Federal Register article.
For regulatory, research and
tolerance purposes summer squash will be
defined as: Fruits of the Gourd (Cucur
bitaceae) family that are consumed when
immature, 100% of the fruit is edible
either cooked or raw, once picked it cannot
be stored, has a soft rind which is easily
penetrated, and if seeds were harvested
they would not germinate: eg. Cucurbita
pepo (ie. crookneck squash, straightneck
squash, scallop squash, and vegetable
marrow); Lagenaria spp (i.e. spaghetti
squash, hyotan, cucuzza); Luffa spp. (i.e.
hechima, Chinese okra); Memordica spp.
(i.e. bitter melon, balsam pear, balsam
apple, Chinese cucumber); and other
varieties and/or hybrids of these.
IV. VEGETABLE GARDENING
A. National Junior
Horticultural Association Florida 4H
During the week-end of Oct. 26-27,
1991, Florida will host for the third time
the annual convention of the National
Junior Horticultural Association (NJHA).
This year's meeting will be held at the
Altamonte Springs Hilton located alongside
I-4 near the Orange-Seminole county line.
The previous two conventions were: 1962 -
Deauville Hotel, Miami Beach, and 1971 -
Sheraton Beach Hotel, Miami Beach.
Due to this historical event taking
place in Florida, I thought our readers
might be interested (perhaps) in a brief
history of Florida's participation in the
only U.S. youth association dedicated solely
to the promotion of horticulture. For now
I will take you through the first 15 years
(1960-1974), because I was personally
involved since 1962.
For the following trips I have
reconstructed the individuals, teams,
coaches, chaperons, and sponsors that
represented Florida on these trips. I'll be
sharing that information with interested
parties in the near future. In the
meantime, we look forward to another
successful convention in Florida. So far we
have over 350 signed up from around the
(Stall, Vegetarian 91-10)
FLORIDA HISTORY (1960-1974)
National Junior Vegetable Growers Association (NJVGA)
Dec. 4-8, 1960
Dec. 3-7, 1961
Dec. 2-6, 1962
No. 4H JII 4-H Dem
(15) St. Johns None
(16) St. Johns None
(21) St. Johns None
(13) St. Johns None
National Junior Horticultural Association (NJHA)
National 4H Center
(Stephens, Vegetarian 91-10)
Prepared by Extension Vegetable Crops Specialists
Dr. D. J. Cantliffe
Dr. S. M. Olson
Assoc. Professor /
Professor & Editor
Dr. G. J. Hochmuth Dr. D. N. Maynard
Assoc. Professor Professor
Dr. S. A. Sargent
Dr. C. S. Vavrina
Dr. W. M. Stall
Dr. J. M. White