Jan 18, 2023
The much-needed rainfall this year has been historic for our area, passing our average annual rainfall total -- and the winter season isn’t over yet! Water years run from July 1 to June 30. This bar chart shows annual rainfall for San Luis Obispo Reservoir over the past 18 years. There were some wet years but this winter is the wettest since 2005-06. Rainy, wet conditions present different types of problems for strawberry production. Various molds and soilborne pathogens thrive in these constantly damp conditions. In particular, watch for Phytophthora root rot and angular leaf spot.
Data source: https://wr.slocountywater.org/
Latest Blog Post! USDA Research Plant Pathologist Peter Henry discusses FW1-resistant varieties with Fusarium wilt in Oxnard, CA.
Jan 18, 2023
Some strawberry varieties are genetically resistant to the Fusarium wilt disease. For example, Fronteras, Portola, and San Andreas are Fusarium wilt-resistant varieties from the University of California. A description of disease resistance for currently available varieties is on the California Strawberry Commission web site. All Fusarium wilt-resistant… [Read more]
SUBSCRIBE to the Cal Poly Strawberry Center research blog @ https://strawberrycenterblog.com/subscribe/
Jan 6, 2023
Since 1949, students from San Luis Obispo and Pomona have worked together to create the joint Cal Poly Universities float for the annual Rose Parade held in Pasadena, CA. The Cal Poly Universities float is the only one fully designed and built by students.
Jan 3, 2023
Our Center's first blog post of 2023 highlights a recent publication by Mello et al. reporting that strawberry powdery mildew (SPM) was notably reduced by nighttime application of UV-C to field plots. Disease reduction was equivalent to that provided by weekly fungicide applications in CA and superior to that provided by twice weekly fungicide applications in FL. It’s nice to see this work carried out in both CA and FL and telling the same story with a few caveats....
Dec 21, 2022
Like much of California and the country, our area has been experiencing below normal overnight temperatures. The temperature in our strawberry fields yesterday morning at about 7 AM was 34F/1C, certainly quite chilly for the central coast! Strawberry flowers can be damaged or killed at temperatures lower than 30F/-1.1C. Young green fruit will withstand 30F but be damaged at temperatures near 28F/-2.2C. Strawberry plants in general are able to withstand freezes and even benefit from the increased plant vigor that follows low temps. A freeze would be much more troubling during early fruit production.
Photos by our farm manager Drew Summerfield.
Dec 15, 2022
Wishing everyone a Happy Holiday and a cheerful New Year!
From the team at the Cal Poly Strawberry Center
Dec 12, 2022
Despite some substantially cooler overnight temperatures (as low as 40F) over the past few weeks, the 2022/23 crop is progressing nicely. Additionally, recent rains have not only helped put a dent in California's extreme drought challenges but have provided our plants with some welcome moisture. According to www.cimis.water.CA.gov (administered by the CA Water Resource Board), Cal Poly campus received over 7.1" of rainfall between 12/1-12/2022.
Dec 9, 2022
Thank you to Cal Poly's Corporate Engagement and Innovation (CEI) team for highlighting our Center and the important contribution that being housed in the Cal Poly Tech Park makes to our Center's overall success and mission fulfillment.
"Cal Poly's Strawberry Center Helps California Strawberry Industry Grow"
Dec 7, 2022
As part of the Fall 2022 CAFES Research Seminar Series line-up, Center entomologist Sarah Zukoff presented "Insect Pest Management in Strawberries: A Closer Look at Improving the IPM Toolbox". Sarah describes aspects of her research program that aim to assist CA strawberry growers with pest control, such as non-chemical management of Lygus bugs, UV-C technology, predatory mites and spotted-wing drosophila parasitoids.
Dec 1, 2022
Strawberry Center entomology team members Sarah Zukoff, Jose Alvarado Rojas and Kiley Jensen presented at the 2022 Joint Annual Meeting of the Entomological Society of America, held in Vancouver, British Columbia on 13-16 Nov 2022. A special shout-out to Jose as recipient of a travel award/stipend to attend the meeting as well as an invitation to speak at the 10th Annual Latin/Hispanic Symposium. His talk was titled "Migrating like the monarchs: A Mexican entomologist's journey from the desert of Zacatecas to the strawberry fields of California". Congrats Jose!
Sarah Zukoff presenting, ESA meeting 2022
Jose Alvarado Rojas presenting, ESA meeting 2022
Kiley Jensen presenting, ESA meeting 2022