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Strawberry Center students present research at 2024 CAFES Spring Student Research Symposium

Jun 20, 2024


Congratulations to Strawberry Center students who presented their research at this year’s CAFES Spring Student Research Symposium. Our students won 3 of the 6 awards and were competing against the entire college (9 departments) with over 70 research projects. This is the 3rd consecutive year that a Strawberry Center student has won 1st place in the graduate student research competition. That’s an impressive record!

Awards:

- Cooper Calvin: 1st place, graduate student research, "Crop termination and cover cropping to manage Macrophomina root rot of strawberry"
- Joseph Ramirez: 2nd place, graduate student research, "California survey of Botrytis fruit rot in Santa Maria strawberry fields with and without fungicides applied"
- Stephen Pryor: 2nd place, undergraduate student research, "Relationship between Fusarium oxysporum f. sp. fragariae and Meloidogyne hapla in strawberry cropping system"

We are also very proud of these student research posters:
- Samantha Simard, "Survey of Soilborne Pathogens Infecting Strawberry in Ventura County, California"
- Marina Gutierrez, "Implementing UV-C Treatment Following Fungicide Application for Control of Gray Mold in California Strawberry"
- Colin Koubek, "Effect of Chloropicrin and Metam Sodium on Nitrogen Mineralization and Preplant Fertilizer Release in California Strawberry Production"
- Maria Guadalupe Alvarez Arredondo (PLSC) and Jake Sporleder (BRAE), "Can microwave be a fumigant alternative to control Macrophomina root rot in strawberries?"

Current Issues in the CA Strawberry Industry: Presentations available online

Current Issues in the CA Strawberry Industry: Presentations available online

Jun 17, 2024


Each year in the Spring academic quarter we invite a series of speakers to Cal Poly to deliver a lecture on a current issue in the California strawberry industry. We just finished this year’s series and thought you might like to see the lineup. Most of the lectures are posted to our YouTube channel. Each one is 45 to 60 min long. Take a look!
https://strawberrycenterblog.com/2024/06/14/current-issues-in-the-strawberry-industry-2024-lectures-now-available/
 

Newest blog article addresses issue of faulty and misleading claims

Newest blog article addresses issue of faulty and misleading claims

Jun 11, 2024


Center Entomology Program Leader Dr. Mohammad Amir Aghaee addresses the issue of faulty and misleading products and provides a few tips to help PCAs and growers avoid potential pitfalls when considering the use and adoption of new products and services.

Read full blog article titled "Beware the temptation of Fraus" @ https://strawberrycenterblog.com/2024/05/31/beware-the-temptation-of-fraus

Subscribe to the Cal Poly Strawberry Center research blog @ https://strawberrycenterblog.com/subscribe/

Driscoll's CEO visits Cal Poly

Driscoll's CEO visits Cal Poly

Jun 6, 2024


Soren Bjorn (CEO, Driscoll's) gave a lecture (22 May 2024) at Cal Poly on "Is there a future for strawberries in California?". Our students are fortunate to have a front row seat to some of the strawberry industry's most seasoned professionals, and professionals get something back as well. According to Soren, "I love coming to Cal Poly San Luis Obispo and engaging with the students. Hopefully, they learn something. I always leave feeling a little smarter by understanding what is on their minds.”

Thank you Soren for making the trip to Cal Poly and imparting your extensive local and global business knowledge and experience to our students!

To view Soren's presentation, visit our Center YouTube channel @ https://youtu.be/-T1JYG-Exss

Continue reading Driscoll's CEO visits Cal Poly...

8th Annual Field Day Registration opens this Monday, June 3!

May 30, 2024



Cal Poly Strawberry Field Day 2024
Thursday, August 8, 2024

Hundreds of strawberry growers, researchers and industry representatives from all over California (and beyond) gather annually for the Strawberry Center Field Day.
Participants rotate through Automation, Entomology and Plant Pathology stations, hearing from Cal Poly students and staff about the latest research taking place at the Strawberry Center. Topics range from the newest automation technology to predatory mites to soil-borne pathogens of strawberry, and much more! Lunch will be served. https://strawberry.calpoly.edu/2019-events

Dr. Hewavitharana visits Georgia Brown Elementary for Career Day

Dr. Hewavitharana visits Georgia Brown Elementary for Career Day

May 28, 2024


Along with other local community professionals, Center Plant Pathologist Shashika Hewavitharana visited Georgia Brown Elementary in Paso Robles, CA for their Annual Career Day. Georgia Brown is a dual immersion magnet school with both English and Spanish instruction. A cohort of 112 students from four kindergarten classes participated in this session with Dr. Hewavitharana. She talked to them about the discipline of plant pathology, the career path of a Plant Doctor, Cal Poly University, and the importance of learning both English and Spanish. Children involved in an interactive 'Learn by Doing' activity of observing plant disease symptoms and signs including the strawberry postharvest disease called Botrytis fruit rot.

Center hosts Cal Poly Pomology students

Center hosts Cal Poly Pomology students

May 23, 2024


Field Technician Lawson Orradre and Center Director Dr. Gerald Holmes hosted two field labs for Dr. Lauren Garner’s Pomology II course on 23 Feb 2024. Why sit in a classroom and talk about what strawberry production looks like when you can walk 10 minutes to the Strawberry Center research fields and observe the crop first hand?

Only at Cal Poly SLO!

MS Student Sam Simard receives conference travel award

MS Student Sam Simard receives conference travel award

May 21, 2024


 

CONGRATULATIONS, SAM!!!

Cal Poly Strawberry Center M.S. Student and Research Associate Sam Simard has been awarded a $500 travel grant from the American Society for Horticultural Science (ASHS). The ASHS meeting will be held from 23 - 27 September in Honolulu, Hawaii, USA. Sam will be presenting a poster about her research project "Effect of Planting Date on Strawberry Yield".

Alfredo Villicana-Bedolla (Reiter Affiliated Companies) visits Center and presents on Integrated Pest Management

Alfredo Villicana-Bedolla visits Center and presents on Integrated Pest Management

May 16, 2024


Alfredo Villicana-Bedolla (Senior Regulatory and Compliance Manager) (right) and Joshua Beltran (Lab Supervisor) (left) of Reiter Affiliated Companies gave a lecture (24 April 2024) at Cal Poly on "Integrated Pest Management" (IPM) in berries. They covered the use of biologicals in pest management, including predatory mites, parasitoids, Trichoderma, and a grower’s playbook for spotted wing Drosophila (SWD). Our students consistently receive first-hand knowledge and insights from some of the strawberry industry's most experienced and seasoned professionals.

Thank you to Alfredo and Joshua for making the trip to Cal Poly and imparting your IPM knowledge and experience to our students!

View their presentation slides (PDF) @ https://content-calpoly-edu.s3.amazonaws.com/strawberry/1/documents/Villicana-Bedolla-2024-IPM-Integrated%20Pest%20Management-v2.pdf

 

MS Student Cooper Calvin receives Outstanding Graduate Student Award

MS Student Cooper Calvin receives Outstanding Graduate Student Award

May 14, 2024


Each spring, Cal Poly Graduate Education honors an outstanding graduate student from each of the Colleges at Cal Poly and the School of Education. This year, we are proud to announce that Center MS Student Cooper Calvin is being recognized as the Outstanding Graduate Student in the College of Agriculture, Food and Environmental Sciences (CAFES)! Cooper was nominated by a colleague in his program and selected by CAFES based upon his academic achievements, scholarly and professional potential, and service to the university and community. Cooper will be graduating this year with his MS degree in Plant Pathology.

Congratulations Cooper!

Photo: Cooper (center) training undergraduate students Taylor Hibino (left) and Lilia Castellanos (right) on DNA extraction procedure.

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