Archive for the “Research” Category

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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Nearly 50 growers, educators and others attended the Berry Open House hosted at Cornell Orchards and the East Ithaca Research Facility last Friday. Topics covered by faculty and graduate students from several departments,  NYSIPM Program and Cornell Cooperative Extension educators included day-neutral low tunnel strawberry systems, cranberries, bird deterrents, spotted-wing drosophila management, biopesticides, soil health, trellising systems, berry varieties, pollinators and more.

Attendees view day-neutral low tunnel production system research.

Attendees view day-neutral low tunnel production system research.

Click on thumbnails for larger view.

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N.Y. Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand, left, samples an NY1 apple alongside its breeder, Susan Brown, associate director of the New York State Agricultural Experiment Station, at the 2010 New York Farm Days event in Washington, D.C.

From October 3, 2014 news release from Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand’s office:

Today, U.S. Senators Charles E. Schumer and Kirsten Gillibrand announced $5,647,879.46 in federal funding to support New York State’s specialty crop producers and specialty crop research initiatives. These funds were allocated through the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) Agricultural Marketing Service (AMS) as well as its National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA) program and were authorized through the 2014 Farm Bill. Specifically, AMS will be administering the Specialty Crop Block Grant Program (SCBGP) funding, which will provide the New York State Department of Agriculture and Markets with $1,417,712.46 in funds to help support specialty crop growers, including locally grown fruits and vegetables, through research and programs to increase demand. In addition, NIFA will be administering the Specialty Crop Research Initiative (SCRI) funding, which will provide Cornell University $4,230,167 in funds aimed at supporting the specialty crop sector by developing and disseminating science-based tools to address the needs of specific crops.

“The success of New York State’s agricultural industries relies on our ability to robustly grow and market safe, nutritious and wholesome specialty crops,” said Kathryn J. Boor, the Ronald P. Lynch Dean of Cornell University’s College of Agriculture and Life Sciences. “These resources for specialty crops research will allow our scientists and our partners in the NYS Department of Agriculture to delight consumers while further enhancing economic returns for our producers across a range of products including onions, apples, wine grapes, potatoes, tomatoes and more.”

The New York State Department of Agriculture and Markets will utilize its $1,417,712.46 in SCBGP funds to support 15 specialty crop programs from around the state. New York State will be partnering with Cornell University, Cornell University’s NYS Agriculture Experiment Station, the New York State Apple Association, Rensselaer County, the Cornell Cooperative Extension of Broome County and the New York State Pest Management Program to make all of these work on projects surrounding food safety, marketing and promotion, and research and grower education.

Cornell University, specifically, will utilize $2,627,860 separate SCRI funds to optimize viticulture practices, genomic characterization, cultivar evaluation, enological characterization, wine production, marketing strategies, agri-tourism, product familiarity and preference. Ultimately, this research seeks to eliminate the production and marketing constraints that currently hinder the profitability and sustainability of emerging cold climate grape and wine industries in the Upper Midwest and Northeast. Cornell will also be using $1,602,307 of its SCRI funds to research ways to reduce the impact of tuber necrotic viruses in potatoes by working with all sectors of the potato industry to develop and implement new practices leading to a healthier potato crop and higher farm income.

View list of projects and more information at Kirsten Gillibrand’s website.

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willow harvestLarry Smart is among the presenters at the Willow Biomass Energy Short Course, Nov. 18-19, SUNY College of Environmental Science and Forestry, Syracuse N.Y.

The two-day conference includes classroom and field training in sustainable production and multiple end-uses of shrub willow for heat, power, & environmental benefits!

  • Discover exciting opportunities for rural development with willow biomass energy
  • See how willow is being applied to reduce environmental impacts
  • Learn the latest best practices and applied research for commercial willow crops and how this is improving returns on investment
  • Familiarize yourself with new financial analysis tools for willow biomass crops
  • Tour innovative demonstration projects on the SUNY ESF campus showcasing cutting-edge biomass conversion technologies
  • See willow harvesting equipment available through the NEWBio equipment access program (www.newbio.psu.edu) in action at commercial willow operations and NEWBio demonstration site in northern New York.

Early registration discount deadline is Oct. 18

More information: Willow conference website.

Or  contact: willow@esf.edu or 315-470-6775.

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low_tunnel_strawberriesx450Friday, October 3, 2014
12:30 to 4:30 p.m.
Cornell Orchards, Ithaca, NY

Part 1 of the program will be held at Cornell Orchards, located on Route 366 in Ithaca across from the College of Veterinary Medicine parking lot. Part 2 of the program will be held at the East Ithaca Farm located just around the corner from Cornell Orchards on Maple Ave. A refreshment break will be provided between program sessions.

Topics include:

  • Low tunnels
  • Cranberries
  • Bird and spotted wing drosophila management
  • Biopesticides
  • Soil health
  • Trellising systems
  • Variety Q&A
  • And more.

The open house is free and open to the public but pre-registration is required to ensure adequate transportation, handouts, and refreshments. Please register by phone or e-mail by contacting Cathy Heidenreich, mcm4@cornell.edu, 315-787-2367 no later than Friday, September 26 30, 2014.

Full program line-up and more information.

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If you missed today’s seminar, Case studies in forest farming, with Ken Mudge, it’s available online.

And don’t forget to pre-order his new book, Farming in the Woods.

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