The Food Provider ~ September | October | November 2014
In This Issue
- Featured Farmer: Jerry Ornellas, Kapaʻa Homestead, Kauaʻi
- HOT TIPS from Jerry's Farm
- Sustainable & Organic Research & Outreach News
- CRATE: Center for Rural Agricultural Training and Entrepreneurship
- From the Agribusiness Incubator
- Publications and Programs
- Organic Update
- For New Farmers
- Citizen Science
- Workshops | Conferences | Meetings
- Videos & Webinars
- FMI / FYI
- Funding Opportunities
- Westerm SARE
Cover Crops, Food Safety, Agricultural Entrepreneurship and Community Engagement take center stage in this Fall 2014 issue of HānaiʻAi, the sustainable agriculture newsletter of the College of Tropical Agriculture and Human Resources. Join us on a trip to Kauaʻi to meet a longtime sustainable agriculture advocate and this issue's featured farmer, Jerry Ornellas.
Make sure to visit the "back pages" of the newsletter as well, which feature Publications & Programs, upcoming Workshops, Conferences and Meetings, and the Organic Update. Stay up to date with our weekly SOAP activities via our twitter feed at: https://twitter.com/SOAPHawaii. As always, the mission of HānaiʻAi is to provide a venue for dissemination of science-based information to serve all of Hawaii's farming community in our quest for agricultural sustainability, and we would like to hear from you.
Welcome to CTAHR
We want to welcome Cynthia Reeves who joined the college in September as Maui County Administrator. She is a UH Master’s alumna, who comes to us from her previous post as National Program Leader in Nutrition and Health for USDA NIFA, where she provided strategic planning, policy analysis, and leadership for Extension staff and programs in all US states and territories. We can feel very fortunate that she will bring her high-level experience and skills to this position.
Area under production: approximately 12 acres
Years farming in Hawaiʻi: 40 years
Crops grown: I grow longon as my primary crop. I also grow lychee and breadfruit and have begun preparing areas for both dry and flooded kalo (taro). Bananas used to be my main crop, but now I grow bananas just for home consumption because of banana bunchy top virus (BBTV).
Fertility Management: I use a combination of conventional and organic management strategies. I use mulch, compost and commercial fertilizers when necessary as indicated by soil tests. I foliar feed with kelp extract and conventional fertilizers when trees are fruiting.
- Don’t try to fit a square peg in a round hole! Fit crop selection and management to the land.
- Marketing, Marketing, Marketing. Create demand before planting.
- All agriculture is local.
Mahalo nui loa to Jerry Ornellas for this interview. Photos: T. Radovich.
Effect of Intercropping Three Legume Species on Early Growth of Sweet Corn (Zea mays)
Amjad A. Ahmad, Theodore J.K. Radovich, and Nguyen V. Hue, UH-CTAHR
Two field experiments were conducted in Hawaii to study the effect of three legume species intercropped with sweet corn, soybean, bush bean, and cowpea, and corn alone served as control, on the growth, relative chlorophyll content, biomass, and yield in sweet corn. We got more chlorophyll, taller plants, higher biomass, and heavier corn ears under corn/legume intercropping treatments compared to corn only. Corn/Cowpea performed significantly better compared to other legumes. The results suggest that lower competition and/or the contribution of fixed N in the corn/cowpea treatment, contributed to the better growth. Read here.
FMI: Amjad Ahmad, email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Evaluation of Various Pathogen Remediation Strategies for Soil and Soilless Farming Systems in Anticipation of the New Food Safety Guidelines
Jensen Uyeda, Jari Sugano, S. Fukuda, and J. Odani
We evaluated different corrective measures such ozone, UV, chlorine and peracetic acid to reduce the microbial activity of E.coli in irrigation waters. We feel all remedial treatments evaluated hold promise for soil and soilless farming systems. Water quality issues need to be taken into account when implementing a remediation program. Read here.
FMI: Jensen Uyeda, email: email@example.com
CRATE is a USDA NIFA Agriculture and Food Research Initiative (AFRI) funded grant for Small and Medium-Size Farm programs to develop sustainable agricultural practices that rely on efficient use of on farm resources and integrate natural biological cycles and controls that will eventually lead to promoting local community entrepreneurship in the tropical Pacific region. In this column, the CRATE team will publish recent project activities that will help local farmers to explore competitive and economically viable organic crop production methods.
Evaluation of Microbes for Field Application in Hawaii
K-H. Wang, J. Sugano, J. Uyeda, T. Radovich, S. Ching, S. Mishra, A. Park, D. Meyer, M. Quintanilla, S. Fukuda, and S. Migita, UH-CTAHR
Sustainability of agricultural productivity on Hawaiian farmlands is dependent on maintaining or enhancing soil fertility and increasing on farm efficiency. Unfortunately, many short-term, intensive crop farming systems rely on frequent soil tillage that disturbs soil microbial activities which may eventually lead to a "tired soil." In terrestrial farming systems, introducing beneficial soil organisms could serve as a faster approach to restore soil health in disturbed agroecosystems. A replicated field trial was conducted to evaluate the effects of several commercially available soil inoculi as well as a farm prepared soil inoculum known as indigenous microorganisms (IMO) following the practice of Korean Natural Farming on a sweet corn agroecosystem. Identification of a good soil inoculum which local farm communities can easily acquire, multiply, and utilize may heighten the use of on-farm resources, recycle farm waste, while ultimately fostering soil health. Read here.
FMI: Koon-Hui Wang, email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Suppression of Mites by Vermicompost Tea on Tea plant (Camellia sinensis)
S. Mishra, A. Park, J. Sugano, J. Uyeda, and K.-H. Wang, UH-CTAHR
Drenching plant root system with vermicompost tea is another approach to introducing beneficial soil organisms to agroecosystems. A field experiment was recently conducted to examine the effect of root drenching of vermicompost tea on tea (Camellia sinensis) plants infested with mites. In addition to its ability to increase plant available nutrients and plant growth promoting organic acids, research efforts have shown that vermicompost tea promotes high microbial activity in the soil which may lead to increased plant tolerance against stress and minimized pest damage of new plant growth. Read here.
FMI: S. Mishra, email: email@example.com
Increase your sales by knowing who you’re selling to
A Target Market is a defined group of potential customers that is the focus (target) of your sales/marketing efforts. The more you know about this group, the better you are able to reach them and address their needs, thus increasing your sales. Read here.
FMI: Steve Chiang, email: firstname.lastname@example.org
NEW from CTAHR
- Proper Technique for Injecting Albizia (Falcataria moluccana L.) With the Herbicide Milestone (Active Ingredient: Aminopyralid)
- Anthracnose of Papaya in Hawai‘i
- Cucumber Mosaic Virus in Hawai‘i
- Gibberella and Fusarium Ear Rots of Maize in Hawai‘i
- Zucchini Yellow Mosaic
- Mango: Postharvest Quality-Maintenance Guidelines
- Mangosteen: Postharvest Quality-Maintenance Guidelines
- Passion Fruit: Postharvest Quality-Maintenance Guidelines
- Harvest and Postharvest Tips for Better Quality and Longer Postharvest Life
- Saving Seed
- Huge Benefits From Managing Little Fire Ant on the Big Island
- Potential Cause of Diarrhea in Piglets at Weaning in Hawai‘i
- Good Agricultural Practices: A Best Practices Kit for Safe, Legal, and Effective Pesticide Application in Hawai‘i
- The Use of Human Wastes on Food Crops in Hawai‘i: What Is Allowed and What Is Not
Newly available as a FREE DOWNLOAD
Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack today announced the award of over $52 million in support of the growing organic industry and local and regional food systems through five U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) grant programs. Read here.
Consumer demand for organic products continues to grow across the country, representing a $35 billion dollar industry in 2013. To meet this demand, USDA has initiated a number of new and expanded efforts to connect organic farmers and businesses with the resources they need to ensure the continued growth of the organic sector domestically and abroad. Read here.
Organic farmers are always on the lookout for better ways to combat weeds, insects, and disease, and produce an abundance of the healthiest and best-tasting crops. Having plant varieties that are suited for organic systems may be key to producing higher yields and better quality crops, and could play an important role in increasing organic farmers’ success. Read here.
Bringing the Community Together
The Waimānalo Research Station welcomes Ilima Ho-Lastimosa as the new community coordinator for the Waimānalo Learning Center. Ilima is a lifelong resident of Waimānalo and a Master Gardener, and she has extensive hands-on experience in community development. She is already busy strengthening our existing relationships and developing new ones. In addition to her duties as the community coordinator, Ilima is currently a master’s candidate in the UH School of Social Work with a focus on behavioral and mental health, as well as the executive director and director of operations for God’s Country Waimānalo, the Waimānalo Ahupua‘a coalition that works to perpetuate traditional Hawaiian culture. Welcome, Ilima! CTAHR and the Station are lucky to have you!
There is renewed interest in home egg production, in part due to the work of CTAHR extension agents Glenn Fukumoto and Matt Stevenson. About two years ago Matt came out to show CTAHR students how to build a chicken tractor Glenn Fukumoto designed. One of the cages was demonstrated at the Waimānalo station, and donated to Hawaiian Homesteaders when mongoose started killing the chickens. This piece is a report from one of the homesteaders who is now our community coordinator at the Waimanalo station. Read here.
For more information on building a similar chicken tractor, see:
- Small-Scale Pastured Poultry Grazing System for Egg Production
- Pastured Poultry Production: An Evaluation of its Sustainability in Hawaii
- October 24, 25, and 26, 2014, Island of Maui
- Select from three behind the scenes tours of Maui (lunch included).
- Gala awards banquet evening of Saturday October 25th.
- Advanced training opportunities on Sunday, October 26th.
- Additional program details at conference webpage.
- Conference Brochure
- Register here.
- October 25, 2014, 9:00 am‐ 12:00 pm
- Poamoho Expt Station, 65‐620 Kaukonahua Road, Waialua, Hawaii
- View flier here.
UH CTAHR’s project entitled Center of Rural Agriculture Training for Entrepreneurship (CRATE) aims to develop sustainable agricultural practices that rely on efficient use of on farm resources and integration of natural biological cycles and controls to promote rural community entrepreneurship in the tropical Pacific region. A field day will be held at the Poamoho Experiment Station to show case the following techniques:
- Cover crop mixture for soil health improvement in a tropical climate (Field demo)
- Soil slaking test to compare tilled and conservative tillage systems (NRCS)
- Inoculation of beneficial soil microorganisms to reduce fertilizer inputs (poster)
Pest Management (field demo)
- Insectary crop planting for pest management in diverse agroecosystems
- Vermicompost and compost tea drenching for pest management
- Construction of a variety of DIY screen house for pest management
- October 31 and November 1, 9 am - 5 pm, Waimea Civic Center in Kamuela
- Featuring Dr. Woody Lane, a nationally renowned livestock nutritionist and forage specialist speaking on: Nutrient Deficiencies in Forage-based Diets, Intensive Management Grazing, and Technology Tools for Small Farmers
- Saturday will include field visits to two farms (one sheep, one goat) to discuss forage quality and nutrient profiles.
- Pre-registration is only $50 IF you register by October 15. Late registrations are $75.
- More info and registration are available on our NEW WEBSITE www.hsga.net
Na Maka o ka ‘Aina - HawaiianVoice
Jerry Konanui gives an overview of how to document taro varieties using the list of plant descriptors found in “Descriptors for Taro – Colocasia esculenta,” published by the International Plant Genetic Resources Institute. From measuring the position and size of the leaf, to matching the colors of the petiole and corm flesh with botanical color charts, approximately 50 descriptors for each variety are recorded. Along with the scientific documentation, Jerry provides a wealth of cultural and historic information. His goal is to document as many of the Hawaiian taro varieties as possible for reference by future generations. http://youtu.be/Y1A0iqZHboE
- Banana mini-conference presentations now available.
- new from the Xerces Society and Storey Publishing ,
The 2015 WSARE Calls for Proposals have been posted!
View them all at: http://www.westernsare.org/Grants/Types-of-Grants
These one- to three-year grants are conducted by agricultural producers with support and guidance from a technical advisor. Individual farmers or ranchers may apply for up to $15,000, and a group of three or more producers may apply for up to $25,000. Producers typically use their grants to conduct on-site experiments that can improve their operations and the environment and can be shared with other producers. Grant recipients may also focus on marketing and organic production. Applications are due by 1 p.m. MST Dec. 3, 2014.
Professional + Producer Grants
These one- to three-year grants are similar in concept to the Farmer/Rancher Grants with a few key differences. Instead of a producer serving as the project coordinator, an agricultural professional – Cooperative Extension educator or Natural Resources Conservation Service professional, for example – coordinates the project. A farmer or rancher serves as the project advisor. Applicants can seek up to $50,000 and must have at least five producers involved. Applications are due by 1 p.m. MST Dec. 3, 2014.
View the fall issue of Simply Sustainable with articles on Montana producers testing cover crops, managing Iron deficiency in dry beans, project visits by Western SARE, and ag in Alaska.
Since 1988, the WSARE program has been supporting agricultural profitability, environmental integrity and community strength through grants that enable cutting-edge research and education to open windows on sustainability across the West, including Hawai'i. The goals of WSARE are:
- Promote good stewardship of our natural resources.
- Enhance the quality of life of farmers and ranchers and ensure the viability of rural communities.
- Protect the health and safety of those involved in food and farm systems.
- Promote crop, livestock and enterprise diversification.
- Examine the regional, economic, social and environmental implications of adopting sustainable agriculture practices and systems.
This e-publication has been prepared by CTAHR research scientists and extension staff to deliver science-based information about sustainable and organic production systems to serve Hawaii's farming community.
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Mahalo nui loa,