Category Archives: information

NEWA is awarded USDA grant to improve website

The NEWA website will soon undergo a significant upgrade funded by a USDA Agricultural Research and Development Program Grant awarded to NYS IPM, which is part of Cornell Cooperative Extension, and the Northeast Regional Climate Center (NRCC) at Cornell University. This $198K grant provides important resources to deploy a website that responds to your device screen size, improves user experience, and adds important data quality measures for the NEWA online decision aid system.

The upcoming web redesign will also integrate capability to provide regional attribution for NEWA partners and weather station owners. It will also link growers to respective partner resources throughout the network for improved IPM decision support. Data quality control of variables such as precipitation, temperature, relative humidity, and solar radiation, coupled with improved communication methods with weather station owners will be built to further improve the reliability of NEWA.

NEWA users in New York, Connecticut, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, New Hampshire, New Jersey, North Carolina, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Vermont, Virginia, West Virginia and Wisconsin will soon have a website experience that provides a new level of continued accuracy and reliability for research-based IPM risk assessments and recommendations.

To download a full press release, visit

This work was funded through grant number 2017-70006-27210 from the National Institute of Food and Agriculture, Crop Protection and Pest Management, Applied Research and Development Program.

NEWA in Massachusetts – meet your coordinator

Jon Clements
NEWA MA Coordinator
Extension Tree Fruit Specialist
University of Massachusetts, Amherst

Jon has been working in tree fruit research and Extension for nearly 30 years. First, at the University of Vermont as a Field Research Technician beginning in 1989 where he minded the University Orchards and worked with faculty on various research and Extension grants, including one of the first SARE (formerly known as LISA) funded projects, “A Low Input Management System for Sustainable Apple Production.” While at UVM, Jon also received his M.S. Degree in Plant & Soil Sciences while researching productivity and fruit quality of McIntosh apple trees under varying pruning regimes. Them in 1998 Jon accepted the role of Berrien County Extension Horticulture Agent at Michigan Sate University where he worked with fruit and vegetable growers in the County on mostly horticultural production of apples, pears, peaches, and cherries.

In 2000 Jon and his family moved back to New England when offered the position of Extension Tree Fruit Specialist at the University of Massachusetts Amherst. Now he provides Massachusetts apple, pear, and peach growers with horticultural, Integrated Pest Management, and orchard technology information and advice for them to remain productive and profitable in the face of increased urbanization and weather-based production challenges. Jon also plants and cares for fruit trees at the UMass Orchard in Belchertown where he is based, for applied research and demonstration of new varieties, planting systems, plant growth regulators, and nutrient management. Massachusetts was the 3rd State to join NEWA (after NY and VT) and Jon is constantly pushing his growers to look at new technology as a way of better managing pests and improving production, including the use of decision-support applications provided by NEWA and others.

Jon Clements collaborates with the New York State IPM Program to provide NEWA to growers in MA and is the state-wide coordinator for anyone in this state interested in learning more about this online decision aid system.

NEWA in Pennsylvania – meet your state coordinator

Rob Crassweller
NEWA PA Coordinator
Professor of Horticulture, State Extension Specialist for Tree Fruit
Penn State University
I have been at Penn State since 1984 and prior to that was at the University of Georgia from 1980 through 1983. Did my undergraduate work at Miami University in Oxford, OH in Botany. I received my Horticulture graduate degrees at Ohio State University working under Dr. Dave Ferree. My primary areas of expertise are tree fruit rootstocks, training systems, cultivars and plant nutrition. In the late 1980’s I was part of the PSU team that developed expert systems for orchard management that released the Penn State Apple Orchard Consultant (PSAOC) program. This could be considered a forerunner of the NEWA products. I oversee approximately 11 acres of research/teaching orchards at Rock Springs in central Pennsylvania about 10 miles from the main campus.
Rob Crassweller collaborates with the New York State IPM Program to provide NEWA to growers in PA and is the state-wide coordinator for anyone in this state interested in learning more about this online decision aid system.