California Agriculture, January-February 1991
Volume 45, Number 1
peer-reviewed research articles
Culinary herb use in southern California restaurants
by Stephen H. Brown
Southern California restaurants are increasing their use of fresh culinary herbs. Opportunities exist for well-placed growers to take advantage of the restauranteurs' desire to deal directly with farmers.
Controlling Russian wheat aphid in California
by Vernon M. Stern, Steve B. Orloff
The Russian wheat aphid is spreading rapidly through California. The pest injects a powerful, growth-inhibiting toxin into grain plants. Without insecticide treatment, crop losses can be severe.
Effect of a topically applied whitener on sun damage to Granny Smith apples
by G. Steven Sibbett, Warren C. Micke, F. Gordon Mitchell, Gene Mayer, James T. Yeager
Sunblush, sunburn, and sunscald injury of Granny Smith apple fruits is widespread and results in substantial economic loss when this cultivar is gra wn in the interior valleys of California. Topical, in-season applications of a whitening agent did not protect the crop from these heat-related injuries.
Low-input management of weeds in vegetable fields
by W. Thomas Lanini, Michelle Le Strange
Applying less herbicide to a vegetable crop can increase weed populations and decrease yields. Field trials showed that for some crops, one timely hand weeding could augment lo wer-rate applications of pre-emergence herbicides to give crop yields equal to or exceeding those obtained with fullseason hand weeding or full-rate herbicide treatments.
Irrigation uniformity and cotton yields in the San Joaquin Valley
by Dennis Wichelns, J. D. Oster
Cotton yield data collected from 32 fields in the Broadview Water District are negatively correlated with several measures of soil salinity, sodicity, and irrigation uniformity. Results suggest that farmers may be able to increase cotton yields by improving irrigation uniformity on surface-irrigated fields.
The Estonian Turg and the California Certified Farmers' Market
by Robert Sommer, Maaris Raudsepp
A 1989 comparison showed the Estonian farmers' market to be superior to that country's state-run food stores in quantity and quality of food service, but that farmers' market items were higher in price. Based on surveys, the authors compare the roles played by farmers' markets in the economies of Estonia and California.
Vaccinating grapevines against spider mites
by Richard Karban, Gregory English-Loeb, Paul Verdegaal
Central Valley grape growers can reduce damage from Pacific mites by inoculating infested vines with the less-damaging Willamette mites. Such “vaccinations” may become a useful technique for pest management.
Wild oat competition in short-statured wheat
by David W. Cudney, Lowell S. Jordan, Warren E. Bendixen, Jodie Holt, A. E. Hall, Chris J. Corbett, John S. Reints
Wild oat and wheat were synchronized in their development and were shown to be equally competitive in southern California studies. Competition effects of wild oat were most evident in wheat after the stem elongation stage.
Liquid polymers keep drip irrigation lines from clogging
by J. L. Meyer, M. J. Snyder, L. H. Valenzuela, A. Harris, R. Strohman
Clogging from lime (CaCO3) precipitation can be prevented by injecting a homopolymer of maleic anhydride into buried drip systems. Investigators prevented drip tubing from clogging in coastal strawberry plots by using this polymer and chlorine for high-bicarbonate waters.
A shoppers' survey: California nuts and produce, food quality, and food safety
by Marciel A. Pastore, Christine M. Bruhn
795 consumers interviewed at 53 California markets gave a variety of reasons for buying the way they do. Many had their own ideas about what indicates good quality in produce, but had trouble putting those ideas into words. Consumer ideas about food safety were easier to articulate.
Aphid problems increase on ornamentals
by Stacy L. Vehrs, Michael P. Parrella
Aphids, and the green peach and melon aphids in particular, have dramatically increased their effect on ornamental crops over the past few years. An aphid-specific fungus may be useful for biological control under the right environmental conditions.
Thinning Granny Smith apples chemically
by Warren C. Micke, Joseph A. Grant, Maxwell V. Norton, James T. Yeager
Chemically thinning Granny Smith apples improved fruit size and, perhaps more importantly, increased return bloom the following year. While carbaryl did the best job of chemical thinning, two other registered materials were also effective.
editorial, news, letters & science briefs
Natural Reserve System: Putting the “Nature” in “Natural Resources”
by Kenneth R. Farrell