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Mann Library garden certified by ‘green’ landscape system [Cornell Chronicle 9/25/2012] – The garden space flanking Mann Library’s front door is one of only 11 landscapes in the country to be certified by the Sustainable Sites Initiative (SITES), a new “green” certification system for landscapes. The 5,000-square-foot entrance garden was site-assessed, designed and built by students in the 2009-10 in Creating the Urban Eden, a yearlong course co-taught by Nina Bassuk, professor of horticulture, and Peter Trowbridge, professor of landscape architecture. Read more about the Mann landscape at the SITES website.

Growers view low-tunnel everbearing strawberry production system that extends the harvest season and protects against frost.

Growers view low-tunnel everbearing strawberry production system that extends the harvest season and protects against frost.

Berry open house features new options for growers [Cornell Chronicle 9/24/2012] – Despite a tough year for New York’s berry growers, more than 80 from attended the Small Fruit Open House at Cornell Orchards where they saw how the latest research can help them extend their harvest season, manage nutrients and try new crops.

At the field day, growers toured high tunnels — unheated greenhouses that extend the harvest and improve the quality of bramble crops, as well as make it possible to grow crops that don’t normally overwinter in New York, such as figs and blackberries. High tunnels can also protect crops from late freezes such as the one that occurred last spring. Growers also viewed a low-tunnel production system that similarly protects crops from frost and allows earlier harvest of ever-bearing strawberries in spring while extending the season well into fall. Growers were also introduced to new berry crop possibilities, including juneberries, currants, gooseberries and elderberries.

Read the whole article.

High tunnels extend the season and improve the quality of raspberry crops, and make it possible to grow crops such as figs and blackberries that don’t normally overwinter in New York.

High tunnels extend the season and improve the quality of raspberry crops, and make it possible to grow crops such as figs and blackberries that don’t normally overwinter in New York.

Larry and Christine Smart with their winning pumpkin.  Photo by Rob Way.

Larry and Christine Smart with their winning pumpkin. Photo by Rob Way.

‘Smart’ pumpkin growing wins contest, boosts scholarships [Cornell Chronicle 9/24/2012] – Larry (horticulture) and Christine (plant pathology) Smart won the New York State Agricultural Experiment Station’s first pumpkin growing contest. Their winning entry tipped the scales at 52.6 pounds.

A twisted tale: Plant roots form helices as they encounter barriers [Cornell Chronicle 9/24/2012] – Using 3-D time-lapse imaging, Cornell physicists and plant biologists have discovered that certain roots, when faced with barriers like a patch of stiff dirt, form helical spring-like shapes.

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