- Author: Julie Sievert
Under the auspices of Georgios Vidalakis, Professor at UC Riverside, a handful of graduate students visited Kearney to broaden their scientific knowledge and see examples of how individuals in careers such as their own can have an impact. The students were from a variety of disciplines including Plant Pathology, Microbiology, Entomology, and Botany. Vidalakis said that one reason he chooses to make the annual trek to Kearney is the great diversity of agriculture represented in this one field station.
Their morning was spent in the field.
Nematologist Andreas Westphal explained how he is saving years of research time by testing walnut rootstock against nematodes and for compatibility with commercial scion wood, simultaneously. Below.
Themis Michailides, Plant Pathologist, showed the students samples of infected pistachios. Later he said of this, “The disease is anthracnose of pistachio caused by Colletotrichum fioriniae, according to Project Scientist, Paulo Lichtemberg. It is a new disease in California and caused major problem in a few orchards in Glenn Co. The same disease in 2010 destroyed 75% of the Australian pistachio crop. It is fortunate that the Kerman pistachio that is extensively planted in California shows more tolerance to this pathogen than the susceptible Red Aleppo cultivar. At present, we (with the lead of Paulo Lichtemberg) are doing epidemiological studies to determine conditions affecting the disease, evaluation of pistachio cultivar susceptibility to the pathogen, and fungicide trials to manage it.” Below.
The students examined a novel trapping method for leaffooted bug as Entomologist Houston Wilson related control strategies for this emerging pest of pistachios. Below.
After lunch, Leslie Holland, a Plant Pathology PhD Candidate working with CE Specialist Florent Trouillas, gave a presentation to students on the important role of plant disease diagnosis to growers and to research institutions. Holland spoke with students about emerging diseases in the fruit and nut crop industry in California and the research being conducted to manage these diseases.
The group continued their day learning from Director Jeff Dahlberg how he and just six other people on the board of the Whole Grains Counsel developed the Whole Grains Stamp. The stamp, used to help consumers make healthy eating choices, is now on 12,000 different products in 58 countries. Vidalakis said that for the students to see firsthand the kind of influence a small group can have in the world was a “jaw-dropping” moment.
- Author: Laura J. Van der Staay
About 35 Parlier High School students came to Kearney Agricultural Research and Extension Center (KARE) not knowing much about ANR or what to expect. They started the day with an entomology workshop conducted by Julie Sievert, a staff research associate at KARE. A tour of research plots demonstrated many different types of disciplines and strategies to research and extend science-based knowledge to address important agricultural and natural resources issues. During lunch, most of the students wanted to return to the world of entomology. As the students left, they commented on how this was a fantastic field trip and that they never knew how interesting and fulfilling applied Ag and natural resources research could be.
- Author: Cheryl Reynolds
As part of the Farmer-to-Farmer Program sponsored by the Partners of the Americas and funded by the United States Agency for International Development (USAID), Walter Bentley, UCANR integrated pest management entomologist, emeritus, at Kearney Agricultural Research & Extension Center, and Washington State University entomologist Jay Brunner traveled to Guatemala in April to help growers improve the peach and apple industry. Their primary goal was to identify pest problems and possible solutions to help peach and apple growers improve fruit production, taking into account the region's unique climate.
Bentley and Brunner worked with the Asociación Nacional de Productores de Frutales Deciduos (ANAPDE) and its director, Armando Hernandez, to reach out to various growers in the area. Bentley and Brunner set out to identify insect and mite problems. Fortunately, they found that there were only a few entomological problems.
- Author: Laura J. Van der Staay
- Contributor: Peter B Goodell
Kearney Agricultural Research and Extension Center has provided a strong research presence to meet the University of California, Agriculture and Natural Resources strategic vision of helping ensure that California has healthy food systems, healthy environments, healthy communities and healthy Californians.
As part of that continued commitment, research and extension programs will be strengthened in Integrated Pest Management (IPM) through the appointment of Dr. Kris Tollerup. Dr. Tollerup was recruited to develop and deliver IPM strategies and practices to nut, fruit and vine growers and pest control advisers in the San Joaquin Valley and surrounding areas. This position, located at Kearney, will build on the excellent work of Bill Barnett and Walt Bentley and is dedicated to the 30 year mission of Statewide IPM Program (UC IPM) . Kris will start his new position at Kearney on October 15, 2013.
Dr.Tollerup earned a B.A. in Pomology, Tree and Vine Culture from California Polytechnic State University and an M.S. in Entomology, Integrated Pest Management and a PhD in Entomology, IPM and Insect Behavior from UC Riverside.
From 2010 until joining UCCE, Kris Tollerup worked as a postdoctoral fellow at UC Davis. Through October of 2012, Kris collaborated with Dr. Larry Godfrey, specialist in the Department of Entomology, Rob Wilson, Farm Advisor and Director of Intermountain Research and Extension Center, and Dr. Dan Marcum, Farm Advisor in Shasta County on a project to develop arthropod IPM programs for peppermint in California. From November 2012 to October 2013, Kris and this same group of collaborators continued working on peppermint to integrate the use of biopesticides into arthropod IPM programs. Prior to coming to UC Davis, Kris worked with Dr. Peter Shearer (currently at Oregon State University, Hood River Experiment Station) to develop effective mating disruption strategies to manage oriental fruit moth on peaches and apples in New Jersey. He served on an inter-agency committee that worked with chemical companies, researchers, growers, and the Interregional Research Project No. 4 (IR-4) to promote the development and registration of ant baits for use in California agriculture.