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Title: Vegetarian
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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
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Publication Date: April 1998
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UNIVERSITY OF Cooperative Extension Service

H FLORIDA Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences


VEGETARIAN


A Vegetable Crops Extension Publication
horticultural &Siencca Deparment D.O. 110690 Gaincville, L 32611 Telephone (352)392-2134


Vegetarian


April 10, 1998


CONTENTS


I. NOTES OF INTEREST

A. Vegetable Crops Calendar.

II. COMMERCIAL VEGETABLES

A. Strawberry Cultivars for Central Florida.

B. What Do We Do With All That Mulch?


C. Phosphorus-Reduction BMPs in the EAA

I JD. Bean Field Day in Homestead

III. PESTICIDE UPDATE

>4 A. IPM Definition

IV. VEGETABLE GARDENING

A. 'Cajun Delight', New Okra Variety for Florida
Gardeners.

Note: Anyone is free to use the information in this newsletter. Whenever possible,
4p 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
S 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.
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I NOTES OF INTEREST

A. Vegetable Crops Calendar.

July 29-30, 1998. Horticultural Events,
State 4-H Congress. Contact Jim Stephens.

II COMMERCIAL VEGETABLES

A. Strawberry Cultivars for Central
Florida.

Sweet Charlie was planted on 38% of the
west central Florida strawberry acreage during the
1996-97 season, overtaking 'Oso Grande' as the
state's most planted cultivar. Growers made the
switch primarily because of the earlier fruiting
pattern of 'Sweet Charlie'. 'Sweet Charlie'
produces the majority of its fruit volume before the
end February whereas 'Oso' produces over half
of its fruit in March and April. The key for the
Florida industry, we believe, is for the industry to
produce the bulk of its fruit before southern
California starts harvesting large volumes of fruit
in March. The biggest problem that we have seen
with 'Sweet Charlie' in our trials is Botrytis fruit
rot. Fortunately, there appears to be some
promising new control measures for this problem
on the horizon.
Camarosa was planted on greater than
20% of the west central Florida acreage during the
1996-97 season. This cultivar, from the University
of California (UC), was only released a few years
ago, but it has quickly become the dominant
cultivar in California, replacing nearly all of the
'Chandler' acreage in that state. It has also
replaced 'Oso' as the main strawberry cultivar in
Spain. 'Camarosa' has a more even fruiting
pattern, and produces a firmer berry, than either
'Chandler' or 'Oso'. West central Florida
growers, in general, were pleased with the quality
and performance of'Camarosa' during the 1996-
97 season, and this cultivar appears to be on its
way to replacing 'Oso' as the cultivar that our
industry depends on for large, high quality late
season fruit. In our trials at the Dover Center last
season, the quality of 'Camarosa' fruit was good,


but its early yield (Dec. Feb.) was only slightly
better than 'Oso'. Like 'Oso', 'Camarosa'
produces over half of its fruit in March and April.
And since 'Camarosa' produces many of its fruit
late in the season, when the weather is typically
warm, anthracnose fruit rot can be a serious
problem on this cultivar. 'Camarosa' also appears
to be moderately to highly susceptible to powdery
mildew.
Oso Grande is losing favor in this area
because of its low yields early in the season, and
because of the fact that it's fruit don't always ripen
uniformly. But in its defense, it generally has a
lower percentage of small and misshapen fruit than
the other cultivars, and it produces a bush that is
easy to harvest.
Selva continues to hang on in the central
Florida industry, mainly because it produces the
earliest fruit of the season. We believe the reasons
for growing this cultivar, however, are fading.
'Sweet Charlie' usually catches up and passes
'Selva' in fruit production by the end of December,
and 'Sweet Charlie' and the other new cultivars
are generally better flavored and less susceptible
than 'Selva' to pest and diseases.
Carlsbad and Cuesta are relatively new
cultivars from the University of California and
both are being grown in west central Florida to a
small extent. Like 'Camarosa' and 'Oso',
'Carlsbad' and 'Cuesta' produce the lion's share of
their fruit in March and April. 'Carlsbad', in our
trials however, has produced higher February
yields than the other UC cultivars.
Rosa Linda, a new cultivar from the
UF/IFAS program got off to a rough start in its
inaugural season (1996-97). Many of the fruit
from this cultivar, especially early in the season,
had green tips. Then the hard freeze of January
19th caused a high amount of flower damage on
this cultivar (compared to other cultivars) resulting
in a lot of misshapen fruit. Despite these
difficulties, however, 'Rosa Linda' produced the
highest total marketable fruit yield (Dec. March)
among the cultivars tested at our center last season.
'Rosa Linda' is susceptible to anthracnose fruit rot,
but is less susceptible to Botrytis rot than 'Sweet













Charlie', and also appears to have some resistance
to powdery mildew, mites, and angular leaf spot.
We suggest that you base cultivar choices
on your production records and experience over the
last several years notjust on one year's results.
The weather in west Central Florida during the
1996-97 season was warmer and drier than is
typical. Weather data for the season (October -
March) compared to a 61-year average (1929-
1989) are presented in Table 2. The average
monthly temperature for October, November,
December, and January was close to the 61-year
average, but the average monthly temperature for
February and March was significantly higher
(+60F) than the 61-year average. Rainfall was
significantly lower than the 61-year average for
January (-1.42 inches), February (-2.41 inches),
and March (2.04 inches).


Table 1. Marketable yield in flatsz per acreat G
December January


Each cultivar has its strengths and
weaknesses, and therefore it is generally desirable
to use a combination of cultivars. If you are
interested in growing a new cultivar, consider
evaluating it on limited acreage for several years.
In this way you can determine, with minimal risk,
how the cultivar performs under your particular
growing and marketing conditions.















CREC-Dover during the 1996-97 season'.


February March


Total


Camarosa (0)' 80 396 363 1079 1918
Carlsbad (Q) 73 301 623 977 1974
Oso(O) 42 420 350 1097 1909
Rosa Linda (NS) 190 380 1441 526 2537
S. Charlie (MA) 215 250 1074 323 1862
Zone flat = 12 pints.
'Plants were set on October 22 and spaced 16 V/ inches apart within rows. The yields in this table
are extrapolations made from single-bed plots of approximately 200 plants per cultivar. These
figures are best used to make comparisons between cultivars, and are not necessarily accurate
estimates of commercial yields. Marketable fruit yields in March were reduced significantly due
to a heavy infestation of thrips.
xO, Q, NS, and MA refer to plants from an Ontario, Quebec, Nova Scotia, or Massachusetts
nursery respectively.


Table 2. Average temperature and rainfall at GCREC-Dover.


Average Monthly Temperature
1996-97 61-year average


Average Monthly Rainfall
1996-97 61-year average


October 73.5 72.7 4.06 2.60
November 66.7 65.9 0.81 1.92
December 61.3 61.1 2.91 2.28
January 60.4 59.7 0.97 2.39
February 67.4 61.4 0.58 2.99
March 71.8 65.7 1.79 3.83












Below is a table summarizing thoughts on the top UF clones in the 1997-98 variety trial.


Strengths


Weaknesses


Sweet Charlie


Rosa Linda


FL 93-100


FL 95-41


FL 95-256


High Dec. and Feb. yield; resistant to
anthracnose fruit rot

High yielding, especially in February
and March

High Dec.- Feb. yield; avg. fruit size
as great as Camarosa

High total yields; firm, deep red,
attractive fruit

High Dec. yields; firm, deep red,
attractive fruit
(C. K. Chandler, D. E. Legard, & T. E.


Highly susceptible to Botrytis fruit rot


Too many small fruit


Susceptible to water damage; primary fruit
often have odd shapes.

Susceptible to Colletotrichum crown rot


Small average fruit size

Crocker, Vegetarian 98-04)


B. What Do We Do With All That
Mulch?

Polyethylene mulch has become an
important production tool for vegetables, so much
so in many parts of the country that we now have
a disposal problem. What do we do with all the
used mulch? Many growers' first experience with
mulch disposal was to disk it up. It will just go
away, won't it? That did not happen and the pieces
of film reappeared each season in tangles in the
planter and cultivator. Mulch film manufacturers
incorporate certain chemicals in the film so the film
will not breakdown prematurely in the field. This
mulch stability makes it possible for growers in
areas in the country with two production seasons,
to use the same mulch for two successive crops.
Since the plastic mulch does not rot or
degrade rapidly, it can pile up around the farm or
in a landfill. Some growers have burned the mulch
on the farm, but this practice is not allowed in all
vegetable producing counties in the country and
will not be a desirable disposal method in the
future. What options for disposal will we have,
especially since more growers are using mulch each
year?
Land filling is probably still the most
popular method for mulch disposal in many areas


of the country. Tipping fees make this an
expensive disposal option. The disposed film often
has considerable soil and moisture which increases
the weight making land filling even more
expensive. Loose film makes for much labor and
costs for transporting to the landfill. New
developments have been made in mechanical mulch
removal and baling so that the used film bulk is
greatly reduced. Baling should be encouraged in
those vegetable producing areas that have a lot of
mulch to be disposed. Baled mulch takes less space
in the landfill or stacks neater and more compact in
a disposal area on the farm. Baling machines are
now available commercially and could be
purchased by a group of growers or a farm supply
center for use in a commercial vegetable area.
Machines are fast, easy to use, and economical.
Recycling of mulch film is on the horizon,
Actually, the technology to recycle the film is here
today but the economics of mulch film recycling is
not very favorable yet. Mulch film is usually dirty
and wet, and sometimes covered with some
pesticide residues. This contamination means the
film must be cleaned before recycling which
increases the cost. Greenhouse covers, row tunnel
film, and other clean films are currently being
recycled into plastic lumber among other things.


Clone












Recycling of mulch film will inevitably
become a reality once the economics become
favorable. When recycling comes, the mulch film
will need to be baled for ease of handling on the
farm and for transportation. Baling also will be
required by the recycling company which is
remanufacturing the film into another product. If
recycling becomes economic, then baled mulch can
easily be retrieved from "storage".
Incineration is another option for mulch
disposal but most agricultural mulch is dirty or
has crop protection chemicals on the surface.
There is considerable BTU content of
polyethylene, so there is interest in the energy
conversion potential. However, burning of
polyethylene presents some challenges in most of
today's waste incinerators, because it generates
too much heat for the incinerator equipment. In
addition, low temperature bur or incomplete
combustion can generate pollutants. It is probable
that burning of uncleaned mulch film will not be
acceptable in many areas.
As mulch film use increases and
environmental awareness grows, disposal of mulch
film will be something to deal with. Before the
local government, especially in areas of heavy
mulch use, makes regulations on mulch disposal,
the agricultural industry should decide on amulch
disposal program. It seems that this program
should at least consist of some sort of coordinated
baling effort. Ideally, disposal of bales should be
done in a fashion at a landfill or on the farm so
they can be retrieved for recycling. Disposal of
mulch film is, and will be, an important issue for
vegetable producers to deal with. To this end, the
American Society for Plasticulture (ASP) will
become more active in communicating ideas for
mulch disposal among the mulch producers, users,
waste disposal industry, agricultural mulch
disposal equipment companies, and governmental
agencies. If interested, you can call me or reach
the ASP at 526 Brittany Drive, State College, PA
16803, phone (814) 238-7045, or fax (814) 238-
7051.

(Hochmuth, Vegetarian 98-04)


C. Phosphorus-Reduction BMPs in the
EAA.
The 1994 Everglades Forever Act requires
a 25% reduction in annual P runoff from the
Everglades Agricultural Area (EAA). This basin-
level regulatory target must be met by growers
through BMP strategies designed to reduce P
discharge from their properties. In late-1992, 10
EAA farm sites were instrumented to continuously
monitor off-farm drainage volumes and discharge
P concentrations/loads. This Everglades REC
study was designed to develop and test P-reduction
BMP strategies for sugarcane, vegetable, and
mixed-cropping operations.
Unlike sugarcane (a fairly water tolerant,
long-term crop), vegetable production typically
requires frequent field drainage events to maintain
optimal water table levels and to accommodate
multiple field preparation, planting, and harvesting
activities during successive cropping schedules.
Vegetable growers thus face unique challenges in
their BMP efforts to reduce off-farm drainage P
levels. Reducing fertilizer P inputs to reduce
drainage P levels is a logical BMP strategy but
documenting this effect is problematic since most
growers had already changed from broadcast to
banded (at reduced rates) applications prior to
farm-level water quality monitoring. Fertilizer
inputs have been reduced at a mixed-crop study
site by choice of crop rotations. For example,
planting vegetables following rice and radishes
following leaf (vs. following sugarcane),
capitalizes on elevated soil nutrient levels created
by the preceding rice and leaf cropping systems.
Water management BMPs that reduce the
frequency/duration of main farm pump operations
will reduce discharge P loading. Prior to BMPs,
a 1280-acre vegetable site would completely
discharge summer fallow flood waters in
preparation for planting. Under BMPs, the grower
now routes water internally between fields while
planting progresses in selectively drained fields.
Off-farm P loads have been reduced by allowing

fallow flood waters to subside naturally through
ET and percolation, a practice that also
encourages in-field retention ofhigh-P particulate
matter.












Installation of water control structures at
a 1750-acre mixed-crop site allowed the grower to
"hydraulically isolate" crops with different water
requirements within contiguous field blocks.
Appropriate water levels for sugarcane, vegetable,
rice, and sod blocks can now be selectively
controlled with internal portable pumps which has
reduced off-farm drainage requirements.
Installation of several "booster" pumps internal to
a 2500-acre sugarcane/vegetable rotation site
allows efficient de-watering for vegetables located
at the back of the farm, thus reducing main farm
pump operations. These BMP strategies are
particular useful for cropping systems that include
sugarcane and other crops (vegetables, rice,
and/or sod). Hydraulic isolation of different crop
commodities and use of internal portable and
booster pumps allows the preferentially discharge
of lower-nutrient water off farm, re-direction of
higher-nutrient drainage (vegetable or rice) into
sugarcane fields, routing localized drainage events
around the farm to maximize ET losses, and
retention of low-volume rainfall events.
Land-use decisions near the farm
discharge structures can impact water quality
trends. Off-farm drainage events increased at a
mixed-crop site when fields adjacent to the main
farm pump were planted to vegetables and then
flooded rice. Subsequent rotation back into
sugarcane led to appreciably reduced water
management logistics and declining P loads.
These trends were not observed when rotations
placed vegetable/rice blocks in the middle/back of
the farm. This geographic arrangement placesthe
entire farm water conveyance network at the
grower's disposal, allowing the complete
implementation ofthe P-reduction BMP program.
Under these BMP strategies, 8 of 10
project farms have achieved P load reductions
exceeding the 25% regulatory requirement for the
basin. Lack of reductions at specific farm sites
are associated with specific crop rotation and/or
water management decisions, and are deemed
correctable with appropriate BMP
implementation. Future research trends will focus
on enhancing BMP efficacies through improved


particulate control and on-farm water/ nutrient use
efficiencies.
(Ron Rice, Vegetarian 98-04)

D. Bean Field Day in Homestead

A Bean Field Day was held in Homestead
on Thursday, March 12, 1998. Two trials were
featured. The first was at one of the grower
demonstration sites for the South Florida Water
Management District funded project: Irrigation and
Fertilization Optimization Project to extend Best
Management Practices to Fruit and Vegetable
Growers in the South Dade Basin. It featured both
aspects of this demonstration: (a) the use of an
EnviroSCANT and tensiometers to measure soil
moisture, and (b) a fertilizer rate demonstration
using 2 rates of nitrogen and 2 rates ofphosphorus.
The 4 resultant combinations were: (1) 80-32-96,
(2) 120-32-96, (3) 80-0-96, and (4) 120-0-96.
Beans were planted on 21 Jan 98; the first fertilizer
application was on 9 Feb 98, with the second on 20
Feb 98. All phosphorus and one-third each of
nitrogen and potassium was applied at the first
date, with the remaining two-thirds at the second
date.
Project cooperators include: PIs Steve
O'Hair and Bruce Schaffer; Project Manager,
Roberto Nufiez-Elisea; Project biologists, Juan
Carranza and Miamiam Martinez; and Research
collaborators: Herb Bryan, Jonathan Crane, Ed
Hanlon, George Hochmuth, Mary Lamberts, and
Teresa Olczyk. The grower cooperator is Bobby
Helms of B&D Farms.
The second stop was at one of Teresa
Olczyk's bean variety trials. This trial was planted
on 15 Jan 1998 with 16 cultivars and advanced
breeding lines from Asgrow, Novartis (Rogers),
Ferry Morse, and Vilmorin. The beans
experienced bad weather from the start, with heavy
rains and strong winds. The grower cooperator is
Sam Accursio, Jr. ofAccursio Farms.
The purpose of the field demonstrations
with bean varieties and breeding lines is to provide
growers with independent, objective information
on the performance of different varieties in the
winter and early spring in the Homestead area.










South Florida's unique soils and climatic
conditions, and extreme pest pressure are real
challenges for varieties developed elsewhere.
Twenty-four people attended the field
day, including growers and industry
representatives from fertilizer, seed and irrigation
companies.

(Lamberts, Vegetarian 98-04)

III. PESTICIDE UPDATE

A. TPM Definition

Harold Coble (N.C. State) and the USDA
IPM Committee have drafted a "definition" for
IPM. This document may have great impacts on
areas of IPM programming, especially in the
measurement issue and the 75% goal.
Read the following and get your reactions
to me or to Harold at :
HCOBLE@MORRILL.REEUSDA.GOV.

Determining the Practice of IPM

A key in the determination ofwhether the
Administration goal of 75% of US cropland acres
under IPM by the year 2000 has been reached is
some rational definition of what growers must do
in order to qualify as IPM practitioners. Adoption
of IPM systems normally occurs along a
continuum from largely reliant on prophylactic
control measures and pesticides to multiple-
strategy biologically intensive approaches. IPM
is site-specific in nature, but certain general
criteria must be met at each site for control
methods to qualify as IPM practices. At a
minimum, each site should have in place a
management strategy which includes Prevention,
Avoidance, Detection, and Suppression of pest
populations (the PADS approach). Adoption of
the PADS approach will help reduce reliance on
broad-spectrum, highly toxic materials. While
pesticides should be applied as a last resort in
suppression systems, some use will remain
necessary. The more biologically intensive the


approach in each of these strategies, the further
along the continuum the grower is likely to be.
Prevention is the first line of defense, and
includes such tactics as using pest-free seeds and
transplants, preventing weeds from reproducing,
cleaning tillage and harvesting equipment between
fields or operations, using irrigation water free of
pest organisms, using field sanitation procedures,
and eliminating alternate hosts or sites for insect
pests and disease organisms.
Avoidance may be practiced when pest
populations exist in a field or site but the impact of
the pest on the crop can be avoided through some
cultural practice. Examples of avoidance include
crop rotation such that the crop of choice is not a
host for the pest, choosing cultivars with genetic
resistance to insects or disease, using trap crops,
choosing cultivars with maturity dates that may
allow harvest before pest populations develop, and
simply not planting certain areas of fields where
pest populations are likely to cause crop failure.
Detection and proper identification of pests
through surveys, scouting programs, or monitoring,
including trapping, weather monitoring and soil
testing, should be performed as the basis for any
suppression activities. Records should be kept of
pest incidence on a temporal and spatial basis for
each field. Such records form the basis for crop
rotation selection, economic thresholds, and
suppressive actions.
Suppression of pest populations may
become necessary to avoid economic loss if
prevention and avoidance tactics are not
successful. Suppressive tactics may include
cultural practices such as narrow row spacings or
optimized in-row plant populations, cover crops or
mulches, or using crops with allelopathic potential
in the rotation. Physical suppression tactics such
as cultivation or mowing for weed control may be
beneficial where soils are not prone to erosion, and
temperature management or exclusion devices may
play a role in postharvest pest management.
Biological controls, where available, should be
considered as alternatives to conventional
pesticides, especially where long-term control of an
especially troublesome pest species can be
obtained. Chemical pesticides are the most widely-









used suppression tactic, particularly on large-
acreage or high-value crops.
Chemical pesticides are important in IPM
programs, but sound management of pesticide use
involves the following: 1) The cost:benefit should
be confirmed prior to use (economic thresholds);
2) Sprayers or other application devices should be
calibrated prior to use and occasionally during the
use season; 3) When available and where
economically feasible, precision ag technology
should be utilized to limit pesticide useto areas in
fields where pests actually exist; 4) Pesticides
should be selected based on least negative effects
on environment and human health in addition to
efficacy and economics; and 5) Chemicals with
the same mode of action should not be used
continuously on the same field in order to avoid
resistance development.
(Stall, Vegetarian 98-04)

IV. VEGETABLE GARDENING

A. 'Cajun Delight', New Okra Variety
for Florida Gardeners.

Every now and then I run across a new
vegetable variety that is so outstanding that I want
each of you agents to know about it. This is one
of those cases.
The crop is okra. Our old standard
variety with which every veteran gardener is
familiar is of course 'Clemson Spineless.' These
same gardeners also know that when its pods
reach 5 to 6 inches in length they are tough and


stringy. Not so with pods of 'Cajun Delight.' One
gardener whose name I won't mention for fear you
would start calling him "Okry" or something told
me about his experience with 'Cajun Delight.'
Bill brought in his first bucket of okra for
his wife to prepare. When he got home for dinner
there was no okra cooking. When asked why, his
wife said, "Why, you surely don't think those cow
horns are fit to eat! They are ready for the mulch
pile." At which he replied, "Whoa, hold on there.
This is something new. I hear this okra has pods
so tender you can eat'em a foot long." So she
cooked them and what he had heard was indeed
correct.'Cajun Delight' is a 1997 All America
Award Winning Hybrid variety. To receive that
designation, it had to be tested all overthe U.S. and
receive Superior ratings everywhere. Seed
company catalogs tout it as the first okra to receive
such an award since 1939. At 50 days it matures
about a week earlier than 'Clemson Spineless.'
The vigorous dark green plants are 4 to 5 feet tall,
spineless, and produce excellent yields of tender,
less fibrous pods over a long season.
'Cajun Delight' is offered by several seed
companies, including Parks, Harris, and Gurney,
making it readily accessible to Florida gardeners.
So, if any more of you agents are also home
gardeners, you might give it a try along with your
other favorite varieties. You can at least tell your
Master Gardeners and others about it.

(Stephens, Vegetarian 98-04)


Prepared by Extension Vegetable Crops Specialists


Dr. D. J. Cantliffe
Chairman


Dr. S. M. Olson
Professor


Mr. J. M. Stephens
Professor


Dr. T. E. Crocker
Professor


Dr. G. J. Hochmuth
Professor


Dr. S. A. Sargent
Assoc. Professor


Dr. C. S. Vavrina
Assoc. Professor


Dr. D. N. Maynard
Professor


Dr. W. M. Stall
Professor & Editor


Dr. J. M. White
Assoc. Professor




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