The collaboration between HarvestNY and regional extension teams is strengthening the state wholesale produce auction sector, a total of five businesses with over $5 million in sales of fresh fruits and vegetables. In 2012, a research study of auctions, growers, and buyers identified needs and successful attributes of auctions. In early 2013, these data were used to develop programming to promote growth at current auctions and to establish two new auctions.
Through conversations with farmers, I helped them to increase farm profitability by improving fertilizer use, reducing seeding rates, and selecting different plants for silage.
The Expanding Capacity in Environmental Education Project (EE-Capacity) strives to meet the need articulated by EPA for a population that is “diverse, informed, environmentally literate, as well as willing and able to translate their knowledge and skills into decisions and actions that protect the environment in every community, including those that are traditionally under-served.” Thus, EE-Capacity’s mission is to improve environmental quality through diversifying and strengthening the field of Environmental Education (EE).
On-campus research shows that growing pansies at lower temperatures affects the timing of production of fungus gnats. While the numbers are not decreased, the egg to adult period is at least 2 weeks longer when the temperature is 55 F vs 75 F. Increased organic matter content of the soilless medium results in higher numbers of fungus gnats produced. Initial results suggest that nematodes are effective as a biocontrol measure under both cool and warm temperatures, although results on Atheta, a rove beetle, are inconclusive.
Graduate students in Landscape Architecture and Real Estate engaged in re-development strategies for the new Cornell Tech campus on Roosevelt Island in New York City.
Being able to communicate scientific information is a skill that need to be learned. There is no better way to practice than to become a teacher, and educate students at all levels. I train both graduate students and undergraduates how to become good teachers, we discuss pedagogical methods, read books and journal articles about teaching methods. By exposing this new generation of scientists to modern teaching methods we don't only teach them how to become better communicators but we make them more competitive on the job market.
Season extension techniques researched and promoted by the Cornell Vegetable Program allowed a NY grower to harvest tomatoes beyond the first frost. The Harvest New York team was then instrumental in connecting this production with the Southern Tier Foodbank, providing access to local, nutritious vegetables to low-income populations.
A series of on-farm summer field meetings were held for dairy and beef producers to increase awareness of issues and IPM approaches to manage nuisance and biting flies on dairy cattle in and around confinement areas and for animals on pasture.
Management of internal parasites in goats and sheep is important for animal health and profitability of farmers. This project showed that there was farm to farm variation in the effectiveness of copper oxide wire particles; a new approach for control of stomach worms. Including ivermectin, a chemical dewormer, in a protocol to treat goats or sheep infected with deer worm seemed to have no beneficial effect.
A field study was established in 2012 to evaluate the effect that vigorous cultivation (rototilling) may have on improving the efficacy of currently registered herbicides. The target weed, mugwort (Artemisia vulgaris), has deep rhizomes that often allow it to escape complete control with available herbicides. If a late summer rototilling can reduce the size of the rhizomes and bring them closer to the surface, then fall-applied herbicides should be more effective in preventing the smaller rhizomes from regenerating shoots the following spring.