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Commercial Horticulture

Title Summary Date ID Author(s)
10 Years' Experiences with Plasticulture Strawberries in a Colder Area

Over the past decade we've produced Chandler strawberries on plastic mulch on one to two acres per year in the mountains of western Virginia at elevation of about 2,400'.

Jul 23, 2009 2906-1320
Establishing and Managing Caucasian Bluestem

Profit and size of beef cow herds may be largely determined by the pasture available during the hot summer months. With low forage production from natural pastures and undependable growing conditions, the number of animals that can be grazed on a particular area must be limited in order to minimize risks of having a pasture shortage which would mean selling animals or purchasing additional forage. In Virginia we have primarily cool-season grasses in our natural pastures. 

May 1, 2009 418-014
Hill System Plastic Mulched Strawberry Production Guide for Colder Areas

This production guide was written to answer inquiries for information by many potential new strawberry growers in this region north of the Carolinas. The information presented herein was developed from our research results and field experience of several years with plasticulture strawberries at Kentland Agricultural Research Farm near Blacksburg, Virginia, at an elevation of approximately 2,400 feet above mean sea level.

May 1, 2009 438-018
New Primocane Raspberry Experiences and Potentials - Update for Year 2002

This is the first of a two part series written by former Virginia Tech Extension Specialist, Charlie O'Dell. Charlie has been keeping very busy in retirement growing small fruit and vegetables for his U-Pick operation near Blacksburg. In this segment he has some great insight and practical experience to share with us about new primocane raspberry varieties and production considerations for both new and established growers.

Jul 23, 2009 2906-1321
Response of Erect Blackberries to Improved Water and Nutrient Management

A few years ago we planted an acre of newer varieties of erect blackberries including thornless varieties Apache, Arapaho, Navaho, Chester and Ouachita, and thorny ones including Shawnee, Kiowa and Chickasaw.

Aug 17, 2009 2906-1392
Small Fruit in the Home Garden

The small fruits offer advantages over fruit trees for home culture. They require a minimum of space for the amount of fruit produced and bear one or two years after planting. Also, pest control typically is easier than with most tree fruits.

Success with a small fruit planting will depend on the attention given to all phases of production: variety selection, soil management, fertilization, pruning, and pest control. Plant only what you can care for properly. It is better to have a well-attended, small planting than a neglected, large one.

May 1, 2009 426-840
Specialty Crop Profile: Ribes (Currants and Gooseberries)

Currants and gooseberries are two closely related species within the genus Ribes. This genus is diverse with over 150 known species and hundreds of cultivated varieties (cultivars). Currants and gooseberries are easily distinguished by the presence or absence of thorns; gooseberries have thorns, while currants do not.

All ribes are long-lived perennial shrubs that are cold hardy, some to USDA Zone 2. Species and cultivars vary in plant size and form, but are usually upright to spreading (three to six feet) in habit. Disease and insect resistance are variable, depending on the cultivar. The fruit are versatile and nutritious with some currants being especially high in vitamin C. Fruit within species vary in presentation, ease of harvest, flavor, shape, size, texture, and color.

May 1, 2009 438-107
String Trellising of Tomatoes to Improve Quality and Profits

Tests to compare caging, ground culture, and trellising systems of tomatoes were conducted at the Virginia Tech Horticulture Research Farm in the early 1970's with earlier determinate or short growing tomato varieties. Varieties with fewer vines and "self-topping" types were grown in short cages on mulches as early season companions to later-maturing trellis varieties. Many growers adopted short cage culture, using black plastic mulch under the determinate vines.

May 1, 2009 438-017
Vegetables Recommended for Virginia

Table of vegetable recommendations for Virginia.

May 1, 2009 426-480