Early summer crop tour held

Published 9:02 am Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Dr. Pat Phipps addresses issues such as diseases that can affect winter wheat. -- STEPHEN H. COWLES/TIDEWATER NEWS


SUFFOLK—About 75 farmers, extension agents and research scientists participated in the early summer crop tour at the Tidewater Agricultural and Research Extension Center fields on Hare Road in Suffolk.

Participants learned about crop varieties from resident experts and how insects, diseases and weather affect them. Dr. Ames Herbert spoke about treatments on peanuts and cotton, pointing out which experiment patches were undergoing specific treatments, and how they might or might not succeed.

Crop physiologist Dr. Maria Balota showed how she and others were developing peanut varieties resistant to a virus, such as the tomato-spotted wilt virus, as well as thrips. Thrips are tiny flies that feed on leaves and suck out the juice.

Dr. Hunter Frame pointed out the progress experiments in cotton. Wade Thomason and Justin Jones, a master’s degree student, spoke about diagnosing a crop such as corn before spraying.