INSTITUTE OF FOOD AND
UNIVERSITY OF FLORIDA
UNIVERSITY OF FLORIDA VEGETARIAN
A Vegetable Crops Extension Publication
SVegetable Crops Department 1253 Fifield Hall GainesvillefL 32611 Telephone 392-2134
April 10, 1992
I. NOTES OF INTEREST
Vegetable Crops Calendar.
Mini Field Day on Microirrigation Systems for
Vegetable Production Systems.
II. COMMERCIAL VEGETABLES
Use of Bee Attractants in Watermelon Production.
Carrot Production and Soil Moisture.
Potato Fertilizer Demonstrations.
IV. VEGETABLE GARDENING
A. Unusual Vegetables Garden-Grown Organically.
SB. EBDC in the Vegetable Garden.
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I. NOTES OF INTEREST
A. Vegetable Crops Calendar.
April 30, 1992. Irrigation Mini Field
Day. 10 AM Noon. Gulf Coast REC.
(Contact Gary Clark)
May 28, 1992. Organic vegetable
gardening demonstration and tour day.
Organic Gardens Research and Education
Park, Fifield Hall, UF. (Contact Jim
July 13-17, 1992. 4-H Horticulture
Camp, Camp Ocala. (Contact Jim
November 16-20, 1992. National
Symposium for Stand Establishment in
Horticultural Crops. Sheraton Harbor
Place, Ft. Myers. (Contact Charles
Vavrina, SWFREC Immokalee).
B. Mini Field Day on
Microirrigation Systems for Vegetable
The Gulf Coast REC in conjunction
with the Florida Cooperative Extension
Service, has scheduled a mini field day on
Microirrigation Systems for Vegetable
Production Systems. The program will be
held at the Gulf Coast REC on Thursday,
April 30, 1992 from 10:00 AM until 12:00
PM and will emphasize the use of
microirrigation tubing for vegetable
production systems. The program will
include brief discussions and field
demonstrations related to irrigation
requirements and management of drip
irrigated tomatoes, installation and
management guidelines for the Fully
Enclosed Subirrigation (FED) system, and
field sensors and feed back systems for
irrigation scheduling aids. Call Dr. Gary
Clark for more information (813) 751-7636.
I. COMMERCIAL VEGETABLES
A. Use of Bee Attractants in
Standard watermelons represent
most of the commercial crop grown in
Florida but icebox and seedless
watermelons also are produced on smaller
acreages. Florida produced 9 million cwt of
watermelons from 45,000 harvested acres
in 1989-90 which provided an average yield
of 200 cwt/acre. The average price was
$7.15/cwt resulting in a crop value of
$64,350,000 which accounted for 4.9% of
the gross returns to the state's vegetable
The efficacy of BeeScent for
watermelon pollination was previously
evaluated in Florida by Elmstrom and
Maynard. Total yield was increased on one
of three farms in central Florida and there
was an apparent increase in early yield at
all three farms in southwest Florida. Fruit
soluble solids were not affected by
treatment but seed content of fruit from
three of five farms increased.
Plot areas 200 ft long and 20 ft wide
(four beds) were marked off in a
commercial field of 'Sangria' watermelons
located off of Rye Rd, Manatee County. A
bee attractant, BeeScent, was applied on
plants in two plots with a backpack sprayer
at 2 qts per acre on 2 October 1991 at early
pistillate bloom stage and again on 9
October at full pistillate bloom stage. Two
additional plots were not treated. Before
harvest, the plots were subdivided
resulting in four 100 x 20 ft treated and
The watermelons were cut by a
commercial crew on 10 and 19 December.
Each melon was counted and weighed
individually. The resulting data were
subjected to analysis of variance.
Applications of bee attractant did
not significantly increase early and total
yields or average fruit weight (Table 1) as
compared to untreated plots. However, the
numerical results favored application of bee
attractant in every case.
Table 1. Early and total yield and average fruit weight of 'Sangria'
watermelons untreated and treated with Bee Scent.
Measurement Untreated Treated Significancel
No./A 446 539 NS
Cwt/A 97.6 117.2 NS
Avg. fruit wt (lb.) 21.7 21.7 NS
No./A 1683 1702 NS
Cwt/A 303.1 314.4 NS
Avg. fruit wt (lb.) 18.0 18.3 NS
1NS = not significant at 5% level of probability.
Although these results do not show
a significant advantage in the use of a bee
attractant, there may be circumstances
where it would be advantageous, namely:
* An inadequate number of beehives are
* Available hives have low bee populations;
* Death of bees from pesticide misuse;
* Cold, windy, or overcast weather;
* Competing crops or weeds are nearby:
* Lack of adequate viable pollen:
Improved seed yield or quality is
* Reduced incidence of hollowheart is
(Maynard, Vegetarian 92-04)
B. Carrot Production and Soil
Vegetable crops differ in their
tolerance to high or excessive soil moisture
and in high soil moisture effect on
marketable yield. Factors such as the
physical properties of the soil and the
temperature affect crop tolerance to excess
soil moisture. In sandy soils, where pore
volume consists primarily of large pores,
compaction is more pronounced at high
than low soil moisture. Certain tillage
practices such as rolling (compressing)
organic soils (histosols) contribute to soil
compaction and in the production of
carrots, lead to more culls and lower
marketable yields. When young carrot
roots are exposed to water-saturated soil,
roots are shorter and have more discolored
tips and forked roots. Carrot yields and
root length are more influenced by the
water table level and soil moisture content
during the vegetative period than during
root enlargement. Too high or too low soil
moisture will reduce the number of
marketable carrot roots. Marketable root
length but not marketable root width,
measured 2.5 centimeters below the crown,
will be reduced. Marketable carrot roots
can be produced when grown in a wide
range of soil moisture levels, but high
levels reduces yield more than when grown
at a low level as long as there is adequate
early growth and
P builds up in soils in
(White, Vegetarian 92-04)
C. Potato Fertilizer
For the last 4 years, we have been
field-testing our IFAS fertilizer
recommendations for potatoes in the
Hastings area. Tri-county vegetable agents
Austin Tilton, Dan Schrader, and Jim
Dilbeck along with Dale Hensel, Gerry
Kidder, Ed Hanlon, and myself have
compared IFAS fertilizer programs with
those of commercial growers. This spring,
we have 4 large-scale (2 1/2 acre) tests out
which will be mechanically harvested and
weighed. These large-scale tests are
basically the follow-up to our small-scale
tests and involve comparing the grower
program with a reduced fertilizer program.
Average grower rates of fertilizer are 275
lb/A of each N and K20.
Our four years of small-plot work
yielded some interesting results. These
Nitrogen: 1) 150 lb N/A (the IFAS
recommendation) worked well in nearly
2) More than 250 lb N/A was never
better than 225 lb N/A and
frequently reduced yields compared
to 150 lb/A.
3) N applied before planting was
frequently lost by planting time due
4) First application of N must be
made by the time of plant
2) Most fields tested high in P.
3) No benefit for yield or quality
resulted from P additions to soil
testing high in P.
Potassium: 1) is poorly held in Hastings
area soils due to low cation exchange
capacity. K cannot be built up in these
2) K applied ahead of planting can
be leached by rain.
3) 140 lb K20/A was ample K for
potatoes for the season. In many
tests, potatoes did not respond to
more than 70 lb K0O/A.
4) Excessive K reduced specific
gravity of potato tubers.
(Hochmuth, Vegetarian 92-04)
I. VEGETABLE GARDENING
A. Unusual Vegetables Garden-Grown
The Organic Gardening Research
and Education Park is now in its third year
here at U of F's Fifield Hall. (We also
refer to the project as Organic Research
Gardens And Natural Insect Control
(O.R.G.A.N.I.C.). Those of you who found
the various tests and demonstrations of
interest in 1990-1991 should be pleased
with what's in store for Spring, 1992.
Here are some of the things we
have going on this spring. In addition to
the 50x50 model garden, we are
inaugurating a continuous 6000 sq ft
organic garden that will feature unusual
vegetables. Here's a chance to see
specimens of rare and unusual types of
vegetables growing in an organic setting.
Due to the limitation of space, only a few
plants of each vegetable will be grown.
Some of the more viny types will be
growing along the fence for trellis support.
The following is a list of the plots
in the specimen garden
planted this spring.
E English Peas
F Beans, common
G Other legumes
I Root crops
J Salad greens
K Cooking greens
L Corn Sweet
U Okra, etc
V Tropical (roots)
W Tropical (misc)
that we have
Leek; garlic; garlic (Mexican); shallots; chives; chives (Chinese)
Dill; fennel; basils (several)
Asparagus; rhubarb; artichoke (Globe); artichoke (Jerusalem); ginger
Snow peas (Mammoth melting); snap peas (Sugar Ann)
Royal Burgundy; dwarf hort.; pinto; black turtle; red kidney; great
northern; haricotts verts (Vernandon)
Peanuts; edible soybeans; garbanzo; jack bean; sword bean; fava bean
Carrots (Thumbelina); carrots (Chantenay); carrots (Danvers); beets
(Cylindra); beets (Golden); beets (Sugar); beets (Mangel); beets (Long
Forono); kohlrabi (White); kohlrabi (Purple); radish, winter (Daikon);
radish, summer (Giant White Globe); radish summer (Purple Plum);
radish winter (Black Spanish); celeriac; parsnip; horseradish
Lettuce, cos (Rouge); lettuce (Tom Thumb); radicchio (Giulio); corn
salad; cilantro; arugula
Swiss chard (Ruby Red); swiss chard (Lucullus); mustard (Mizuna);
broccoli raab; kale (Dwarf Curled); kale (flowering); Chinese cabbage
(China Flash); bok choy; mustard (Tyfon); brussels sprouts (Rubine Red)
corn, (6-Shooter); corn (Strawberry); popcorn (Purdue 410)
Jack-B-Little; green striped cushaw; spaghetti; banana; turban; seminole;
tahitian; calabaza (La Primera)
Bush pickle; gynoecious (Pioneer); White Wonder; pickles (Little Leaf);
lemon; armenian; cornichans; gherkins
Honeydew (Greenmeat); Crenshaw; casaba (Golden Beauty); banana
melon; mini-loupe (Silver Line); cantaloupe (French Pancha); (French
Seedless; icebox (Minilee); citron
All-blue; Lady Finger; Yukon Gold; sweetpotato
Purple Beauty; Rainbow Collection; Anaheim Chile; Habanero; Peppouri;
Orange Bell; Sweet Banana; Sure Fire; Super Chile
Ichiban; White Knight; Little Fingers; White Egg; Rosa Bianca
Tomato (White Beauty); tomato (Yellow Cherry); tomato (MicroTom);
garden huckleberry; tomatillo; husk tomato
Okra (Blondy); okra (Emerald); okra (Red Velvet); roselle, martynia
Malanga; dasheen; chufa; boniata; yams (fence); jicama (fence)
Grow-Boxes. The twelve grow boxes
(5x10 ft) will feature one additional organic
fertilizer bat guano along with the other
organic soil amendments. This time we
have incorporated the treatment in the
planting hole. Two rates of each product
(hi and lo) are based on the nitrogen
equivalency of a 6-6-6 fertilizer applied at
1 ton per acre. These are the treatments
for spring 1992:
Organic product Rate (100 sq ft)
chicken (fresh) 15 lbs.
(Red Rooster Compost) 15 lbs.
Turkey (Sustane) 6 lbs.
Cow (Agraferm) 30 lbs.
Organic product Rat(
YWC + Fertrell
Oak leaves (shredded)
Oak leaves (unshredded)
(100 so ft)
60 + 10 lbs.
Observational Trials Areas adjacent to the
aforementioned plots have been planted
with several varieties of the following
major crops (number of varieties in
Crop Number varieties
Squash, summer (20)
Squash, winter (10)
pole beans (12)
bush beans (27)
southern peas (14)
lima beans (13)
Other plot studies
a) American Indian farming system.
b) Sweet potato cultivar study.
c) Natural Insect Control.
d) Summer cover crop.
e) Living mulch cultural system
f) Yard waste compost plus fertilizer study.
g) Organic chestnuts
h) Edible landscapes.
Open House Our Organic Park will be
open for public visitation (show and tell) on
May 28, 1992. 1:30 4:00 PM.
(Stephens, Vegetarian 92-04)
B. EBDC in the Vegetable
According to Chemically Speaking
(March, 1992), EPA announced its
intention to cancel EBDC products
(mancozeb, maneb, and metiram zineb
had been voluntarily canceled by
registrants) for the following vegetables:
carrots, celery, collards, mustard greens,
rhubarb, spinach, succulent beans, and
But EPA will allow the continued
use of EBDC (if necessary modifications
are made) on these vegetables:
EPA will allow existing stocks of
EBDC to be sold and used for three years
by anyone other than Registrants.
Registrants of the products can sell and
distribute existing stocks for a limited time
only 6 months. Then they will have to
modify their labels to reflect changes in
rates, application frequency, and time
intervals between applications and harvest.
Basically, this leaves us in fairly
good shape for home vegetable gardens in
Florida. We can continue to recommend
EBDC for the entire garden for three
years, then probably on the majority of
crops thereafter (or until further changes
occur). You will note that we have
continued to keep EBDC in our new
Vegetable Gardening Guide, SP 103.
(Stephens, Vegetarian 92-04)
Prepared by Extension Vegetable Crops Specialists
Dr. D. J. Cantliffe
Dr. S. M. Olson
Mr. J. M. Stephens
Dr. G. J. Hochmuth
Dr. S. A. Sargent
Dr. C. S. Vavrina
Dr. D. N. Maynard
Dr. W. M. Stall
Dr. J. M. White