Drones help rice farmers hone fertilizer application and reduce crop fungal diseases

University of California rice researchers are exploring a more precise way of deciding whether the crop would benefit from a side-dress nitrogen fertilizer application, using drone-mounted cameras. Hand-held Greenseeker-normalized difference vegetation index (NDVI) readings have already replaced color charts as a research tool for in-season fertilizer decisions, but drone photos of the normalized difference red…

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Seed and Variety Improvement in Vegetable Production (video #9 of 26)

The allied seed and variety improvement industries are critically important aspects of vegetable production systems in California. Most vegetables are annuals and have to be started every year from seeds, so seed production is critical for the vegetable industry. Professors Kent Bradford and Diane Beckles, Research Scientist Roger Chetelat, and Ph.D. student Karin Albornoz, all…

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UC Davis Releases Five New Strawberry Varieties – Publicly available plants will help farmers manage diseases, production costs

The Public Strawberry Breeding Program at the University of California, Davis, has released five new varieties that will help farmers manage diseases, control costs, and produce plenty of large, robust berries using less water, fertilizer, and pesticides. Two of the new varieties could increase yields by almost 30 percent.  “These new varieties are intrinsically different…

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Breeding Crops for Enhanced Food Safety

Plant breeders and food safety experts conducted a two-day conference at UC Davis (June 5–6, 2019) to discuss issues relevant to food safety, including control of microbial contamination in produce throughout the food chain (seeds, field production, pre- and postharvest, packaging, distribution, marketing). Maeli Melotto, a UC Davis Plant Sciences professor who focuses on plant-microbe…

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FFAR Awards $225,000 Grant to UC Davis to Enhance Soil Practices in Almond Orchards

DAVIS and WASHINGTON (March 28, 2019) – More than 80 percent of the world’s almonds are produced in California, and this industry contributes $21 billion to the state’s economy. In recognition of the need to develop more resilient almond orchards, the Foundation for Food and Agriculture Research (FFAR) awarded a $225,000 Seeding Solutions Grant to…

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Breeding a Better Strawberry: Scientists Uncover Genetic Roadmap of Cultivated Strawberry

Consumers want strawberries to be red, sweet, ripe and juicy, like those fresh picked from a garden. Suppliers want them to be easy to handle and ship, without getting squished. Commercial strawberry growers need their crops to be high-yielding and disease-resistant. An international team of scientists led by the University of California, Davis, and Michigan…

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Development of an Automated Delivery System for Therapeutic Materials to Treat HLB-infected Citrus (Citrus Greening Disease)

Louise Ferguson, a Cooperative Extension Specialist in the Department of Plant Sciences at UC Davis and with UC Cooperative Extension, is a Co-PI in a $3.4 million USDA NIFA-funded project, “Development of an automated delivery system for therapeutic materials to treat HLB-infected citrus.” The four-year project is based at University of Florida, UC Davis/UC Cooperative…

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Downy Mildew Research to Benefit Lettuce Growers and Consumers: Funds Will Support Genomics Research for $3 Billion Crop

Quick Summary Downy mildew is the most economically important pathogen infecting lettuce Research to benefit conventional and organic farmers and reduce crop loss Research will provide consumers food grown using fewer chemicals Researchers at the University of California, Davis, will use the genomics of lettuce to combat a pathogen that causes losses in the $3…

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