|Webber Iii, Charles|
Submitted to: Horticulture Industries Show
Publication Type: Proceedings
Publication Acceptance Date: 2/4/2005
Publication Date: 4/1/2005
Citation: Roberts, W., Taylor, M., Edelson, J., Shrefler, J., Russo, V.M., Bruton, B.D., Pair, S.D., Webber III, C.L. 2005. Investigations in organic vegetable production in Oklahoma. Proceedings of the 24th Annual Horticulture Industries Show. p. 182-184.
Interpretive Summary: Production of vegetables using certified organic techniques is becoming more important in American agriculture. Technology transfer is needed to introduce best management practices for organic production to interested producers. A 2-acre block at the South Central Agricultural Research Laboratory and Wes Watkins Agricultural Research and Extension Center was established in 2003 on land that had been in pine scrub since 1985. Tomato, watermelon, sweet corn, and southern peas were planted in blocks in 2004, monitored for insect and diseases, and maintained through harvest. Disease ratings were as high 77% on a 0 to 100% scale, but disease rating did not appear to be related to yield which was as high as 13.7 tons per acre. Sweet corn produced as much as 8,150 ears per acre, southern pea as much as 1,936 pounds per acre, and watermelon as much as 690 pounds per acre. The area was provided a winter cover of a mix of turnips and clover and will be maintained for future demonstration of organic production techniques.
Technical Abstract: A demonstration plot to provide technology transfer on best management practices in organic production was established in a cooperative effort between scientists of the South Central Agricultural Research Laboratory and Oklahoma State University Wes Watkins Agricultural Research and Extension Center at Lane, Oklahoma. The land was converted from pine scrub and prepared for planting. Four crops, tomato, watermelon, sweet corn, and southern peas were planted in blocks in 2004. Insects and diseases were monitored. Aphids were a problem in tomato, and were controlled with a National Organic Program approved material. Disease ratings in tomato ranged from 56 to 77%, on a 0 to 100% scale. Tomato yields ranged from 1.6 to 13.7 tons per acre, and yield was not correlated with disease rating. Organic insecticides were used to control insects in corn, and yields were 8,150 and 4,580 ears per acre for cvs. Honey 'n' Pearl and Incredible, respectively. There was little need to control pests in southern peas. However, deer predation was a problem. The southern pea cvs. Pinkeye PurpleHull and Top Pick Pinkeye produced 1,936 and 1,852 pounds per acre, respectively. The area was prepared for winter with a cover of turnips and clover and the same crops in a rotation will be established in 2005.