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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

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Research Project: Evaluating the Feasibility of Coordinated Regional On-Farm Trials of Advanced Raspberry and Blackberry Selections

Location: Horticultural Crops Research

2013 Annual Report

1a. Objectives (from AD-416):
1. Organize and put in place a pilot network of regional on-farm grower trials for evaluating black-berry and raspberry advanced selections. 2. Place trials on farms located in a variety of regional growing conditions.

1b. Approach (from AD-416):
The advisory group will compile an initial list of advanced selections to be trialed on-farm and decide how many of each selection will be needed; Arrangements will be made with each of three participating propagators to produce the tissue culture material to be planted; Growers will be recruited to participate throughout the raspberry and blackberry growing regions of western Washington and Oregon; Remote sensors will be placed in anticipated trial locations to record air and soil temperatures and soil moisture levels during the winter prior to the trials.

3. Progress Report:
This research was conducted in support of NP301 objective 1B of the parent project. Developing cultivars that have superior processed fruit quality has been a top priority for the raspberry and blackberry industry. However, there is a disconnect between the plant breeder's successful plots and a widely planted commercial cultivar. This weak link in the process is the industry's inability to adequately and efficiently evaluate a selection's or cultivar's commercial potential. Over the years, time and resources have been lost by growers, nurseries, and processors because of the ad hoc system now in place. This project addresses this problem by establishing a system for evaluating advanced selections, using a coordinated network of regional on-farm planting trials. During the first year of the project we: 1) Compiled an initial list of advanced selections to be trialed on farm. 2) Arranged with the three participating propagators to produce the material to be planted. 3) Recruited the grower/cooperators in the western Washington and Oregon raspberry and blackberry growing regions. 4) Developed appropriate protocols for the grower trials and evaluations. 5) Oversaw the establishment of these first year plantings. 5) Devised methods to organize, archive, and disseminate project information.

4. Accomplishments

Last Modified: 06/24/2017
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