|Current Research and Extension||
Date Last Edited: 08/24/2001
CULTURE AND MANAGEMENT OF COFFEE, MACADAMIA NUT, AVOCADO AND SPECIALTY FRUITS IN WEST HAWAII
Smith V, Bittenbender H C, Chia C L
1) Provide educational programs in pest management for coffee, macadamia nut, and specialty fruit crops.
2) Determine feasibility of composting macadamia leaves in the field. If a method is found, get 30% of farmers to use it by 1996. Locate and promote sustainable agricultural practices through 1996.
3) Demonstrate methods of pruning coffee. Generate an extension videotape and update existing bulletins on pruning by 1995.
4) Develop a data base of growers to aid in identifying clientele and their needs. Target of 800 entries by 1996.
5) Develop an extension bulletin on variety selection and cultural requirements of temperate and tropical fruits. Distribute to homeowners.
I have developed and implemented effective educational programs utilizing different methods, such as field days, grower meetings, newspaper columns and commodity group newsletter articles, to meet the needs of my ever increasing clientele. I provide ongoing assistance and education to commercial and non-commercial growers. This includes answering questions on the phone, office consultations, advice and services rendered on farm visits, extension of technical information, serving as advisor to commodity groups and my involvement in commodity association committee, Board, and general meetings.
I have put a great deal of emphasis on actively participating in commodity group meetings and working with them to provide collaborative educational programs. I also work with their members on leadership development.
Coffee Talk, a monthly open discussion on any aspect of coffee production, has been well attended and in addition to providing relevant information in an efficient manner, this forum also provides an opportunity for growers to develop networks and learn from each other. Topics over the past year include weed identification and control, insect identification and control, pruning, planting a new orchard, soil and leaf analysis and fertilizer requirements, organic production, labeling requirements, grades and standards, and moisture meter calibration.
My regular news column published every other week in both major newspapers on the island. The topics are of my selection, articles are used to educate commercial growers and home gardeners including those who do not phone or stop in to the CES or have any other contact with UH and/or CTAHR. I also utilize to publicize my programs and commodity group meetings. In addition it raises the awareness of the general public about agriculture and its role in our economy, and about CTAHR.
Certified Landscape Technician program, a training and certification for professional landscape maintenance personnel. This first CLT program in the state (this is a national program) is spearheaded by the Hawaii Island Landscape Association. I participate in the Advisory Committee, as an instructor, in test preparation, and as a Judge's Technical Advisor during the rigorous, hands-on, exam.Gardening Helpline, a weekly gardening hotline directed at home gardeners and landscapers, staffed by trained volunteers. This is conducted in partnership with the Kona Outdoor Circle who I work with closely on this project. I also teach the Insect ID, and Pruning classes.
COMMUNITY RESOURCE DEVELOPMENT
Through strategic planning, empower agricultural-based organizations to develop and implement long-rang goals. Through classes, workshops, and field days, improve organization members knowledge and ability to make informed decisions. Through correspondence, newsletters, and newspaper articles, disseminate research-based information to organization members. This project addresses a cooperative extension service national initiative, "Improving Competitiveness of American Agriculture Focused on Sustainable Agriculture".
This project was merged with the Molokai Lanai Rural Development Project (Project ID # 21-035).
Molokai Rural Development:
The agent chairs the community advisory committee. Funding for this job creation/job training initiative originates from the U.S. Department of Labor through Maui Community College. Over $3 million is appropriated annually and is shared by the neighbor island community colleges. The committee approved grants totaling $450,000. Of these, three of the projects addressed extension-based initiatives. They include the Aquaculture
Initiative, the Molokai Slaughterhouse Project, and the Hawaiian Home Lands Program. Funding was approved for the Molokai Slaughterhouse for $160,500 to cover costs of slaughtering and processing equipment, training funds, construction consulting, personnel, and operations. The Molokai Farmers Cohort program was approved for $83,000, and is targeted for Hawaiian Homestead farm families. A total of 7-10 families will be participants in a program involving computer link-up, and farm planning, production, and marketing. This program will be started in early 2001. Funds appropriated to the Aquaculture Initiative will address the need for liability insurance for training program participants. These extension-led educational programs address initiatives identified through the Molokai Enterprise Community Program.
Native Plants Initiative:
The agent convened meetings to create a team of agencies to develop native plant nurseries on the island of Molokai. The purpose of these nurseries is to supply plants for the restoration of Kahoolawe. Agencies involved included Queen Liliuokalani Childrens Center, the Office of Hawaiian Affairs, Dept of Hawaiian Home Lands, Molokai Enterprise Community, the Molokai Enterprise Community Program, Molokai Community Services Council, the Nature Conservancy of Hawaii, USDA NRCS Plant Materials Center, and the Kahoolawe Island Reserve Commission (KIRC). The agent also conducted meetings with interested producers. In September 2000, at the request of USDA NRCS, Molokai CES submitted a grant to conduct training for residents interested in starting native plant nurseries. The $54,000 grant was approved in October 2000. The CES Team administering this grant are the 3 Molokai extension agents. Expertise drawn from throughout the CTAHR system will be presenting educational workshops on Molokai. This initiative is also a priority identified in the Molokai Enterprise Community Program.
The agent was part of a team of four individuals who planned a collaborative workshop involving three major funding sources on the island. These agencies/organizations included the Molokai Rural Development Project ($500,000 annual grant from federal Dept. of Labor), the Molokai Community Impact Committee ($250,000 annual funding from USDA for the last five years; in second 5-year cycle), and the Molokai Enterprise Community Program ($10 million in FY 2000). The purpose of this facilitated meeting was to look at ways these organizations could collaborate on community-based initiatives to leverage funds to maximize economic impact. One of the projects to emerge out of these discussions, is the need to develop business training programs for the community to create new entrepreneurs. The agent met with OHA, and they have committed $25,000-50,000 to a business training initiative on Molokai. A total of three meetings have been held to date.
Statewide community-based economic development:
The agent represents the Island of Molokai on the Community-Based Economic Development (CBED) State Advisory Council, advisory to the State Department of Business, Economic Development, and Tourism. This program approves grants to community based non-profits, about 25% of which are agriculture-related. Over $200,000 is awarded annually. The agent also serves as vice-chair for the Hawaii Community Loan Fund, an alternative non-profit lending organization. Funds originate from banks as part of their Community Reinvestment Act requirement to lend money to high risk venture in the state. Over 40% of the loans go to agriculture-based projects. The agent serves as the agricultural expert on the board and assists in the review of agricultural business plans. The organization has received over $3 million over the last three years, and over in this period.
Molokai Enterprise Community Initiative:
The agent serves as technical advisor to this project and is project leader for the Molokai Slaughterhouse Initiative. The agent secured funds for the slaughterhouse from USDA ($25,000) and HUD ($42,500). The agent is also a member of the Native Plants Initiative Team to develop benchmarks and implement this educational program. The agent is presently working on the development of a business training initiative involving state, federal, and private agencies. The agent coordinated two workshops on the island with the Molokai EC. They include a presentation by June Holley of ACEnet, a community processing and marketing organization in Ohio, and representatives from Handmade in America, an American crafts network utilizing internet to market their goods. These workshops were well attended and related to Molokai EC initiatives.
Hawaiian Homes Agricultural Task Force:
The agent served as a resource for the Hawaiian Home Lands Agricultural Task Force in identification of problems affecting the utilization of ag leases, and developing an implementation strategy. The process covered a period of 18 months. There are over 200,000 acres of Hawaiian Home Lands statewide. The college will be an important partner in the implementation of this plan.
Cooperative Extension Service/Hawaiian Home Lands (CES/HHL) Educational Program:
The agent also serves as the Cooperative Extension Service/Hawaiian Home Lands Education Program Co-Leader, along with Andrew Kawabata. The agent coordinated the development of a draft plan of work for this program. The agent assisted in the development of a video for the program, including contacting homesteaders to be interviewed and also provided overview for the video.
The agent serves as a member of the Queen Liliuokalani Childrens Center (QLCC) Molokai Unit Advisory. QLCC has become an important partner with CES in community development initiatives, including taro production, slaughterhouse development, co-hort training program, and native plant nursery initiative. QLCC has committed funds for a statewide taro industry coordination, and has committing funds for 2001 for some of the abovementioned initiatives partnered with CES. The agent was also a speaker at the Molokai Taro Conference on laws related to the cultivation of taro, which was jointly sponsored by CES, QLCC, and the Taro Hui. The agent also serves as advisory to the USDA NRCS Plant Material Center.
ORNAMENTALS PRODUCTION, IMPROVEMENT, AND EXPANSION
This project focuses on the economic well-being of the ornamentals industry on Molokai and Lanai, including the improvement of existing producers and expansion of this agricultural sector. This project seeks to also work with the ornamental industry as a group. A sub-project is the development of the lei flower industry in improving winter production to supply flowers to the tourism industry, of which special funds were received. This project addresses cooperative extension service national initiatives, including "Improving Competitiveness of American Agriculture Focused on Sustainable Agriculture", and "Improving Competitiveness and Profitability of American Agriculture.
The agent completed a collection of plumeria to be planted at the Molokai Research Demonstration Farm. Over 85 cultivars are included. The plants are presently being grown out in gro bags before being transplanted to the field. The agent also contributed to the publication of a guide on the growing of 85 plants for lei making. This publication is expected out in December 2000. Due to increased competition by Thailand orchids and adverse impact on lei flower producers, the agent assisted a plumeria grower in diversifying his farm to include the extraction of plumeria fragrances. A proto-type extractor was assembled at Molokai Plumeria and test batches of fragrances have been sent to the mainland. The agent also worked with USDA-APHIS and a plumeria grower to set up protocol for chemical treatment of plumeria flowers for shipment to California after a shipment was found to contain thrips. This was the first attempt by this operation to export flowers to offset decreased sales due to foreign competition.The agent also received educational requests for pikake, tuberose, carnation, dwarf brasaia, puakenikeni, hibiscus, turf, raphis, pakalana, ilima, and others.
The agent also assisted the main landscape maintenance company on Lanai to improve their knowledge. This newly formed company is composed of Lanai residents. The agent conducted a one-day training with two staff in pest identification, nutrition monitoring, irrigation, and communication with homeowners. The agent also linked the company up with other resources within the college. The agent is part of a team to develop native plant nurseries on the island to supply planting material to the Kahoolawe revegetation effort. Meetings were held with producers of native plants to understand needs and provide educational training in marketing. As part of this initiative, the agent coordinated multi-agency meetings to facilitate communication between those involved in growing plants and the Kahoolawe Island Reserve Commission (KIRC), buyers of plants for the revegetation effort. Five agency meetings were held during this period, and included the Department of Hawaiian Home Lands, Office of Hawaiian Affairs, Queen Liliuokalani Childrens Center, the Nature Conservancy of Hawaii, and KIRC. The native plant initiative was identified as a priority in the Molokai Enterprise Community Initiative. CES will coordinate the educational effort. Along with two fellow agents, the agent submitted a grant to USDA-NRCS entitled Plant Propagation Training for the Community of Molokai to foster Economic Development by Producing Plants for the Kahoolawe Revegetation Effort. The grant for $54,879 is expected to receive approval in October 2000. Agents will train the community in native plant and nursery production, and will focus on hands-on and demonstration as the main mode of educational program delivery.
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