Strengthening Organic Farming in the Southeast Project: On-Farm Variety Trials 2019 Research Summary

Extension Services 
Grower partners were advised to contact their main project contact (farms divided into 3 groups) with any issues or concerns. Each main contact consulted with appropriate project personnel then addressed specific concerns with appropriate project personnel and site-specific recommendations for amelioration were made. Farm Visits/Recommendations with Organic Grower Partners Each farm in Alabama, Tennessee, Georgia, North Carolina, South Carolina and Mississippi was visited during the 2019 growing season in order to verify planting and site-specific recommendations were provided during visits. 

Alabama, Georgia, Tennessee
The Tuskegee farm group included farms in Alabama, Georgia, and Tennessee, totaling 18 farms. All but 2 farms were visited this year. Each farm was evaluated by a project Entomologist and provided site-specific recommendations as needed. Detailed logs were completed for each farm visit that included photo documentation. 

South Carolina and North Carolina - Dr. Jeanine Davis
There were 14 on farm field trials in North Carolina and South Carolina. North Carolina State University researchers visited all sites in June 2019 and continue to monitor through project communication lines. Eight farm locations in North Carolina and South Carolina supported the 14 field trials, 28 crop plot trials total.  Many successful on farm trial hosts from 2018 completed trials again in 2019, six locations planted ‘double’ trials (two trials per site, total of four crops per site each). Project Identification numbers in NC and SC in 2019: 2002, 2003A, 2003B, 2004, 2005A, 2005B, 2008A, 2008B, 2009A, 2009B, 2010A, 2010B, 3001A, and 3001B. North Carolina county representation: Brunswick, Buncombe, Union, Transylvania, Greene, and Pender; South Carolina county Laurens. 

Mississippi - Dr. Casey Barickman
The on-farm grower trials in Mississippi were a success at all five of our growers. There has been some trial and error associated with setting up and collecting data, especially at the beginning of the season. Since our growing season is early, a lot of our growers were slow to get the trial set up for the spring. All of our growers are following the time line established in 2018. The second crop, which many selected cool season crops such as kale and beets, were moved them to collecting data in the fall of 2019. Thus, all of our growers completed their first round of trials by November.