Join the discussion July 23
About this Event
Three part webinar lecture series, staring speakers in industry, government, and the university system; covering the following soil health topics:
soil organic matter – interpreting soil test results – structure & function of plant roots – Mycorrhizae 101 – compost & cover crops – microalgae – biochar – FDA soil health perspectives – conservation tillage – organic production – pesticide effects – soil borne pathogens – ag engineering pest control.
PCA, CCA, and Pest Control continuing education credits requested for AZ, CA, NM, and NV.
More details to come on the CEU process.
Module 1: Defining Soil Health
8:00am - 10:30am
Soil Science PHD Student: UC Davis
Defining Soil Health in the American Southwest
Dr. Joey Blankinship
Soil Science Professor: University of Arizona
Soil Organic Matter in Desert Agriculture
Interpreting Soil Test Results
Dr. Glenn Wright
Extension Horticulturalist: University of Arizona
Structure and Function of Plant Roots
Director of R&D: Mycorrhizal Applications LLC
Module 2: Practices to Improve Soil Health
10:30am - 3:00pm
Dr. David Johnson
Adjunct Professor: New Mexico State University
Composting and Cover Crops
Dr. Kristine Nichols
Research Director: MyLand Company
The Role of Microalgae in Soil Health
Dr. Catherine Brewer
Assistant Professor: New Mexico State University
Biochar Production and Application Methods
Dr. Ataullah Khan
Senior Research Scientist: InnoTech Alberta
Biochar Application Development
Consultant: BioAg Product Strategies
Alternative Soil Amendments for Soil Restoration and Sustainability
Dr. David Ingram
Consumer Safety Officer: FDA-CFSAN Produce Safety Staff
FDA Perspectives on Soil Health
Dr. Michele Jay-Russell
Project Director: UC Davis Western Center for Food Safety
Organic Production Soil Health Considerations
Dr. Jeff Mitchell
Cropping Systems Specialist: UC Davis
Conservation Tillage in Vegetable Cropping Systems
Conservation Education Director, AZ Association of Conservation Districts (AACD)
Funding for Soil Health Programs
Module 3: Soil Pest Control
3:00pm - 6:00pm
Dr. John Palumbo
Extension Entomologist: University of Arizona
Soil Applied Insecticides
Extension Weed Scientist: University of Arizona
Persistence of Herbicides in the Soils of the Low Desert
Dr. Stephanie Slinski
Associate Director: Yuma Center for Excellence in Desert Agriculture
Soil Borne Pathogens
Dr. Channah Rock
Extension Water Quality Specialist: University of Arizona
Water Treatment Effects of Soil Borne Pathogens
Dr. Mark Siemens
Extension Ag Engineer: University of Arizona
Point Injection Systems – Fertilizer/Pesticide Application with Minimal Soil Disturbance
California agricultural employers, workers approach smoke concerns differently
UC Davis examines health and safety awareness around mounting threat
University of California - Davis
In 2018, California wildfires burned more than 1.8 million acres and caused smoke to drift hundreds of miles. As the frequency and intensity of wildfires increases with climate change, California agricultural workers are at greater risk of smoke exposure as they often have no option but to work outdoors.
A new study from researchers at the University of California, Davis, finds that while wildfires and smoke exposure are recognized by farmworkers and employers as a growing threat and safety concern, the means to address these concerns differs between the two groups.
"What stood out in this study is the substantial disparities between agricultural employers and farmworkers," said Heather Riden with the Western Center for Agricultural Health and Safety at UC Davis.
Riden, who led the research in partnership with the California Institute for Rural Studies, said that while growers and employers expressed concern about poor air quality at the time of the study in 2018, many had no clear plans or protocols for measuring air quality or managing workers in such conditions. While the public is advised to stay indoors due to poor air quality during a wildfire, agricultural work often continues.
The study also found that when farmworkers were offered protective masks, many found them difficult to use while working due to heat-related discomfort and chafing. Others believed wearing two bandanas over the mouth and nose would provide just as much protection.
Farmworkers' experience is compounded by economic need.
"Many farmworkers will continue working, even in unsafe conditions, to support their families. They don't have many other options," said Riden.
Last year, the state Division of Occupational Safety and Health, better known as Cal/OSHA, enacted an emergency regulation requiring employers to take measures to protect workers from wildfire smoke when the Air Quality Index reaches 151 or greater, which is considered unhealthy. Riden said as CAL/OSHA begins to craft permanent regulations, she hopes it takes the study's findings into consideration.
"This highlights the need for better awareness for both agricultural employers and farmworkers about the health risks associated with wildfire smoke," said Riden. "Employers also need training materials and concrete steps they can take to protect workers."
To assist agricultural employers with meeting the requirements outlined in the newly adopted regulation, the Western Center for Agricultural Health and Safety developed training materials and an employer checklist.
The study was based on interviews and focus groups with California agricultural employers and workers in the Salinas, San Joaquin and Imperial valleys. Support for the study came from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health.
For the complete article and amazing pictures check out: https://www.ucdavis.edu/health/california-agricultural-employers-workers-approach-smoke-concerns-differently
This content was developed by the Western Center for Agricultural Health and Safety at UC Davis. For more information and to access their wildfire training materials, visit their wildfire training page: https://aghealth.ucdavis.edu/wildfires
A recent website just posted hopes to make research papers available to the general public. Many times these papers are locked away in archives or libraries and are hard to access. This website wants to change that. It is sponsored by various group0s, including USDA, University of Missouri, industry, Resource Conservative Districts and other entitites. It's a small data base at this point, but hopes to build over time. check it out:
There's a lot of distracting stuff at the site, but the guts are at
Other good ag websites are the USDA's National Ag Library:
USDA's ATTRA which is loaded with basic and detailed farming information:
USDA's Farming Information Center
It's a new year, READ ON!!!!
When reviewing possible problems your citrus might have, it's easy to jump to the conclusion that it is a virus. That's because viruses are a major problem around the world in citrus and the effects can be slow, chronic and debilitating or fast and deadly. Images get posted on the web, and if those symptoms look like something your tree has, then by golly you have a virus. Well, actually viruses are everywhere and in most plants, so you probably do have a virus or viruses, but not plant debilitating one. California, has had a pretty thorough nursery inspection procedure in place for many years and the likelihood of a virus causing a problem is less likely here than in many parts of the world.
In most cases viruses are difficult to eradicate in practice, so it is best to remove them before they get out in the field. The Citrus Clonal Protection Program (http://www.ccnb.info/page.php?s=2&c=3) weeds out citrus viruses before they get to wholesale nurseries and into the trade. That does not mean that we don‘t have debilitating viruses in the California industry. We do. Tristeza is in some of our orange orchards and that can lead to significant yield reductions and tree death (http://www.ipm.ucdavis.edu/PMG/r107101311.html.). Tristeza is spread by the melon aphid and is hard to control without good control of the aphid. In many older orchards there is exocortis and psorosis http://www.ipm.ucdavis.edu/PMG/r107100100.html; http://www.ipm.ucdavis.edu/PMG/r107100511.html). These are graft transmissible and why it is not good, in fact unlawful, to propagate trees with uncertified budwood.
In most cases in California if you are having symptoms of unhealthy in your trees it's most likely due to an irrigation problem (too much, too little, poor timing), a nutrient deficiency and possibly a fungal disease (most likely a root one such as armillaria or Phytophthora). Or in this day, it could be the start of Huanglongbing vectored by Asian Citrus Psyllid (http://www.ipm.ucdavis.edu/PMG/r107304411.html). Before jumping to the conclusion that there is a virus in your trees. Check out the most common problems for California citrus first (http://www.ipm.ucdavis.edu/PMG/C107/m107bpleaftwigdis.html). There are enough of those anyway.
Amazing. I was out with the contractor who has been doing the California Avocado Commission's annual acreage report. In the past, aerial photography was used and with painstaking accuracy the acreage was visually evaluated by hand. It was so expensive and took so long, that only parts of the California acreage were done each year. The company now uses satellite imagery and computer evaluation to do the whole avocado growing area each year and at much less cost. Now the contractor is going to try to estimate the amount of root rotted acreage that is out there. They will do this by canopy color and texture relative to healthy trees. We were out looking at the range of diseases out there that could be confused with root rot, such as bacterial canker, blight, black streak and crown rot. This will be amazing if they can distinguish amongst the diseases, but even if they can identify unhealthy groves that will be an amazing feat.