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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

Research Project: ORGANIC AND REDUCED INPUT FRESH MARKET SPECIALTY CROP PRODUCTION SYSTEMS FOR THE SOUTHERN GREAT PLAINS Title: Kenaf harvest decision matrix or how should I harvest kenaf?

item Webber, Charles
item Bledsoe, Robert -
item Bledsoe, Venita -
item Fester, John -

Submitted to: Meeting Abstract
Publication Type: Abstract Only
Publication Acceptance Date: May 15, 2010
Publication Date: August 11, 2010
Citation: Webber III, C.L., Bledsoe, R.E., Bledsoe, V.K., Fester, G.J. 2010. Kenaf harvest decision matrix or how should I harvest kenaf [abstract]? 2010 Symposium on Renewable Feedstock for Biofuel and Bio-based Products. August 11-13, 2010, Austin, Texas. p. 45.

Technical Abstract: The correct harvest method for kenaf (Hibiscus cannabinus L., Malvaceae) is dependent on many factors, including production location, equipment availability, storage options, processing plans, plant utilization, and economics. Since its first domestication, kenaf has consistently been hand-harvested for use as a cordage crop (rope, twine, and sackcloth). The bark portion, which contains the bast fiber strands for cordage, was hand stripped, bundled, and placed in water for the retting process. The USDA, universities, and private industry have developed an assortment of mechanical harvesters and post-harvest equipment to separate bark from the core material, and the bast fibers from the core fibers. With the advent of new uses for the entire kenaf stalk, additional equipment has been evaluated and used for whole stalk harvesting. The development of these whole-stalk harvesters has taken two major approaches; sugarcane-type harvesters and forage-type harvesters. One important consideration for all harvesting and processing systems is the 75% moisture content of actively growing kenaf plants. Once kenaf stalks are dried, harvest and processing methods selected must reduce the potential limitations and disadvantages of the plants' low bulk density for storage and transportation.

Last Modified: 8/27/2015
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