Archive for the “Research” Category

From Thomas Björkman:

Hundreds of Cornell alumni gathered at the Astor Center in Greenwich Village for Furrows to Boroughs: A Taste of New York State in New York City, a regional sesquicentennial celebration October 22 hosted by the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences.  The event highlighted the link between tri-state agriculture and Cornell. The culinary work and products of local farmers, agricultural businesses and chefs were on display and available to taste.

Horticultural products featured prominently. Many wines of course, a tremendous pastry designed around Susan Brown’s new SnapDragon apple, and fall berries and vegetables raised with techniques and varieties developed at Cornell. The alumni were not only excited by the great food, but also proud to be part of the institution that helps make it all possible.

I collaborated with chef and native Ithacan Tyler Kord, who has been making a big splash in the New York City restaurant scene by highlighting broccoli in new contexts. He operates the No. 7 restaurant in Fort Greene Brooklyn and has two high-profile sub shops at the Plaza Hotel by Central Park and the Ace Hotel in the financial district where he has popularized both the broccoli sub sandwich and the broccoli taco. This year Short Stack published his cookbook  Broccoli.

At Furrows to Boroughs, Tyler served tacos using broccoli provided by Windflower Farm, operated by former Cornell Cooperative Extension educator Ted Blomgren, who continues to be an avid cooperator on Cornell Horticulture research and extension projects as well as a pioneer for providing fresh produce to the food deserts in the outer boroughs through an active CSA.

As part of the Eastern Broccoli Project, I’m leading a team to develop varieties as well as the production and marketing infrastructure to supply New York City with Northeast broccoli for three months of the year, and have other Eastern regions supply the same buyers for the balance of the year.

Our goal is not to supply all of the Big Apple’s broccoli, but enough to provide regional growers with a profitable alternative enterprise and consumers with a fresher, more flavorful and nutritious product.

The project is funded by the USDA’s  Specialty Crop Research Initiative, and is a collaboration with six other universities, the Agricultural Research Service, seed companies,  distributors and growers.

Tyler Kord prepares broccoli tacos at Furrows to Boroughs.

Tyler Kord prepares broccoli tacos at Furrows to Boroughs.

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'Wee Stinky' at dawn November 14.

‘Wee Stinky’ at dawn November 14.

While it is difficult to predict exactly when, the Cornell University Titan Arum (dubbed ‘Wee Stinky’ when it flowered for the first time in March 2012) is poised to flower again.

Visiting Hours

Visiting Hours: 9:00 a.m.-4:00 p.m.

Hours will be extended once the plant blooms. For updates watch our Twitter and Facebook feeds.

You can also view the titan arum on a live webcamtrack its growth in numbers and images, and read updates on our blog.

Cornell Daily Sun science editor Kathleen Bitter previews the impending bloom in ‘Wee Stinky’ to Bloom For First Time Since 2012.

To learn more about Titan Arums, you can also view the Titan Arum YouTube playlist. Here’s a sample:

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Processor and seed company representatives sample frozen peas at NYSAES ‘cuttng’.

Processor and seed company representatives sample frozen peas at NYSAES ‘cuttng’.

More than 40 people attended the annual fall processing vegetable ‘cutting’ November 6 to sample and compare canned and frozen peas, sweet corn, and snap beans trialed at the New York State Agricultural Experiment Station, Geneva, N.Y.

“It was the best turnout we’ve ever had,” says Jim Ballerstein, the research support specialist who manages the processing vegetable trials.

Attendees included representatives from processing and seed companies, including the top three vegetable seed companies in the world, adds Ballerstein.

The cutting included samples of 50 pea cultivars, 55 snap beans (canned and frozen), and 63 sweet corns (frozen kernel and whole ear).

Learn more about processing vegetable trials at NYSAES.

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Susan Brown

Susan Brown

Tune in this afternoon to hear Susan Brown, associate director of the New York State Agricultural Experiment Station (NYSAES), discuss Apple Science, From American Beauty to Zestar on Science Friday.

The show runs from 2 to 4 p.m. on public radio stations across the country and we expect Susan to be on during the first hour.  (Likely around 2:20 p.m.) You can listen locally on 89.5 FM in Geneva or on 91.5 FM in Ithaca. You can also stream it on ScienceFriday.com or  listen to the podcast after the show airs.

Here’s the episode summary from the SciFri website:

The humble apple wears many faces, from the crisp and crunchy Honeycrisp to the soft and tannic Mac. How did apples get so diverse? Apple breeder Susan Brown explains the ins-and-outs of apple reproduction and reveals how modern plant genetics allows her to “stack the deck” in favor of crisp and sweet offspring. Plus, orchardist and apple historian Dan Bussey introduces us to some weird and wonderful heritage breeds.

 

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Barton Laboratory Greenhouse


Following a multimillion-dollar makeover, the Barton Laboratory Greenhouse was dedicated Oct. 30 at the New York State Agricultural Experiment Station in Geneva, New York. (Photo: Rob Way, CALS Communications)

Cornell Chronicle [2014-11-05]:

Researchers at the New York State Agricultural Experiment Station (NYSAES) in Geneva, New York, have a fully modernized network of greenhouses now that Barton Laboratory Greenhouse’s multimillion-dollar makeover is complete.

During a ribbon-cutting ceremony Oct. 30, NYSAES welcomed New York state Sen. Michael Nozzolio ’73, M.S. ’77, who helped secure a $4.7 million grant for the reconstruction project in April 2013.

Nozzolio (R-54th Dist.) credited the agricultural research conducted at NYSAES with being an economic driver for the region as well as the entire state.

“The research that makes agriculture the number one industry in this state is done here,” Nozzolio said. “The reason why we have over 250 wineries in this state, and well over 110 right in the Finger Lakes region, is because of the research done here. Whether it’s Dr. Susan Brown making new varietals of apples, whether it’s the grape industry, those jobs in the orchards and the vineyards are in large part thanks to the research done here.”

Read the whole article.

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James Keach

James Keach

We have more good news at Cornell University today because my PhD student, James Keach, is the recipient of the $5,000 Proven Winners Innovations in Plant Breeding Scholarship.

James is in the Graduate Field of Plant Breeding and is researching interspecific compatibility and trait introgression between Impatiens species and integrating and understanding the basis for resistance to Impatiens Downy Mildew.

Congratulations James!

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plant science signU.S. News and World Report released its rankings of the best university programs on the planet, ranking Cornell #1 in Plant and Animal Science and #3 in Agricultural Sciences.

Read more:

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Graduate Field of Horticulture student Miles Sax and supporting faculty received a 2014 TSF grant for the project, Long Term Remediation of Urban Soils With Organic Amendments.

Graduate Field of Horticulture student Miles Sax and supporting faculty received a 2014 TSF grant for the project, Long Term Remediation of Urban Soils With Organic Amendments.

The Horticulture Section in the School of Integrative Plant Science at Cornell’s College of Agriculture and Life Sciences (CALS) requests proposals for innovative research, teaching and extension/ outreach projects involving organics and sustainability in farm and food systems, and managed landscapes including gardens and green spaces.

A gift from the Toward Sustainability Foundation (TSF) will provide support for successful proposals during calendar year 2015. Short proposals are requested with a 6-page maximum (single spaced including an itemized budget, extra pages are allowed for the literature cited section).

We invite grant proposals from Cornell campus-based faculty and staff as well as county-based Cornell Cooperative Extension educators. Student-led proposals are welcome for regional or international research, but a Cornell faculty member must indicate his or her commitment to help guide and support the proposal.

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From Tim MartinsonNorthern Grapes Project Director,  tem2@cornell.edu:

Northern Grapes Project Director Dr. Timothy Martinson speaks about the training system trials during a field day at Coyote Moon Vineyards in Clayton, N.Y.

Northern Grapes Project Director Tim Martinson speaks about the training system trials during a field day at Coyote Moon Vineyards in Clayton, N.Y.

The Northern Grapes Project received an additional $2.6 million in funding from the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Specialty Crops Research Initiative to complete the final two years of the multistate effort, which began in 2011.

The project focuses on growing extremely cold-hardy wine grape varieties that are new to both growers and consumers, creating a rapidly-expanding industry of small vineyard and winery enterprises.  Dr. Tim Martinson, Senior Extension Associate at Cornell University, leads the project team, which includes research and Extension personnel from ten institutions in the Upper Midwest and Northeast.

“New producers are spread across twelve states, most without an established wine industry,” said Martinson. “By working together, the Northern Grapes Project team provides more resources to producers than would be available if each state had its own effort.”

The new varieties have growth habits and flavor profiles that are quite different from well-known varieties. So the project’s researchers have been working to determine the best ways to grow them, turn them into flavorful wines, and market those wines in local and regional markets.

In the first three years of the project, team members invested heavily in field and laboratory trials, conducted consumer surveys and a baseline survey of the industry, and provided outreach programming to an aggregate audience of more than 7,000.

“The continued success of this project in obtaining funding is testament to the team’s exceptional productivity and to how this project has impacted grape production in northern regions across the Northeast and upper Midwest,” said Dr. Thomas Burr, Director of the New York State Agricultural Experiment Station.

“As a producer, having scientists involved is especially valuable to us as they are conducting rigorous tests to back up our hunches and our theories,” said Dave Greenlee, a project advisory council member and co-owner of Tucker’s Walk Vineyard in Garretson, S.D. Greenlee cites trials of various trellising systems in vineyards and sensory evaluations of wines using different yeast strains in the lab. “These save us time and help us improve our products,” he points out.

The grant was funded by the USDA National Institute of Food and Agriculture’s Specialty Crops Research Initiative, which supports multi-institution, interdisciplinary research on crops including fruits, vegetables, tree nuts, and ornamentals.  The project includes personnel from Cornell University, the Connecticut Agricultural Experiment Station, Iowa State University, Michigan State University, North Dakota State University, South Dakota State University, the University of Minnesota, the University of Nebraska, the University of Vermont, and the University of Wisconsin.

For more information, visit the Northern Grapes Project website at http://northerngrapesproject.org.

High resolution image.

The Northern Grape Project’s webinar series starts November 20, 2014 Steve Lerch, Cornell University and Mike White, Iowa State University on Trellis Design and Construction and Pruning Fundamentals Prior to Your First Cut.

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If you missed yesterday’s horticulture seminar Targeting vegetable crop improvement in East Africa with Phillip Griffiths, it’s available online.

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