1a.Objectives (from AD-416):
To conduct applied research for grape and small fruits disease diagnostics; build human capacity by improving research training and experiential learning of junior facility and graduate students at Florida A&M university and to develop "Diagnostic Facility for American Native Grapes" serving as a centralized research support unit and student training platform in pathogen screening and prevention and program development for grape clean plant material.
1b.Approach (from AD-416):
We propose to initiate and facilitate the diagnostic and collection of scientific data on the infestation and transmission of planting stock diseases in muscadine grape and American native hybrid varieties. The diagnostic unit will be at the Center for Viticulture and Small Fruit Research at Florida A&M University. It will be suited for analysis of large numbers of samples to ensure promotion of clean planting materials in the southeastern region of the U.S. Best managment practices will be shared with growers through site visits, workshops, field days, lectures and demonstrations at growers' meetings. Opportunities will be available for building capacity in newly developed research areas of plant disease molecular diagnostics, student training, experiential learning by students and faculty by upgrading laboratory facilities, providing materials and supplies and financial assistantships to students.
This research relates directly to Objective 2. Develop “push – pull” strategies for whitefly management that integrate plant-based pest repellents and natural enemy attractants.
Experimental field plots of canola were set up at a commercial farm in AL. Surveys were conducted throughout the season for insect pests such as lygus bugs and their beneficials. Three different sites were monitored to test different varieties that will thrive in the southeastern region of the US. Data collection, processing and analysis are on-going. A field day was organized for growers to demonstrate best practices in canola production, use of integrated pest management and biological control, and current research on the variety trials.