WEED, WATER, AND NUTRIENT MANAGEMENT PRACTICES FOR ORGANIC BLACKBERRY PRODUCTION
Horticultural Crops Research
2012 Annual Report
1a.Objectives (from AD-416):
The objectives of this study are to develop best irrigation and fertigation practices and weed management systems in organic ‘Marion’ and ‘Black Diamond’ machine-harvested for processing. In addition to developing a feasibility study and cost analysis for organic trailing blackberry production, we will evaluate the impact of post-harvest irrigation on plant growth, yield, and quality, ascertain the incidence of cane disease, and determine the impact of weed presence on productivity.
1b.Approach (from AD-416):
A new planting will be established at the North Willamette Research and Extension Center on land in “transition”. Planting will be in spring 2010 such that the first fruit harvest in 2011 will be organic (certified by Oregon Tilth). Treatments include: cultivar (‘Marion’ and ‘Black Diamond’); irrigation (post-harvest and no post-harvest irrigation); weed management (weed mat, hand-hoed, and non-weeded); and primocane training date (August and February).
Trailing blackberry cultivars are being evaluated in various organic production systems for the processed market. Treatments include: cultivar (Marion and Black Diamond); irrigation (post-harvest and no post-harvest irrigation); weed management (weed mat, hand-weed, and weedy “control”); and primocane training date (August and February). The planting was established in May, 2010. Primocanes were trained as they grew. In February, 2011, plants were cut to crown height to improve plant growth, as is typical for commercial production. The planting is being harvested for the first time in 2012. Data were collected on plant dry weight and nutrient accumulation as affected by weed management treatment. Growth and yield data are presently being collected. This research was conducted in support of objective 305 1B Perennial Crops of the parent project.