Red River Station Field Day Highlights Research Accomplishments

Patrick Colyer, Van Osdell, Mary Ann  |  9/11/2007 7:21:39 PM

News Release Distributed 09/07/07

BOSSIER CITY – The LSU AgCenter’s annual field day and open house at the Red River Research Station in Bossier City on Sept. 6 highlighted research accomplishments with greenhouse tomatoes, agronomic crops and cotton pest management.

Dr. David Boethel, LSU AgCenter vice chancellor and director of the Louisiana Agricultural Experiment Station, praised the Red River Station for “developing cotton varieties, excellent tomato research and work in pest management.”

Boethel, who began his career at the Pecan Research and Extension Station in Shreveport, said expertise is maximized when scientists work together across both research station lines and state lines.

Dr. William B. Richardson, LSU AgCenter chancellor, asked the group of 80 to let their elected officials know that the Pecan Station “does not need to be destroyed with an interchange for Interstate 69.”

The Pecan Station has been in continuous operation since 1930 and is the only land-grant university facility in the country devoted solely to pecan research and extension programming to support the pecan industry.

William David Caldwell, an LSU AgCenter scientist at the Red River Station, was recognized for 41 years of volunteer dedication to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Association’s National Weather Service as a 2007 recipient of the agency’s John Campanius Holm Award.

He was one of 26 people out of 11,700 volunteer observers who have performed exceptional service. Caldwell began his career with the LSU AgCenter in 1966.

Updates on programs of interest to producers, consultants and agribusinesses in Northwest Louisiana were given by faculty on field tours at the station.

Dr. Patrick Colyer, whose presentation featured management of cotton nematodes, said the best way to control the pests is through crop rotation.

“This is the time of year to sample your fields for nematodes,” he said.

In presenting his recent research results on Dallisgrass for pastures, Dr. Bill Pitman said producers may have an opportunity to develop a Dallisgrass industry in northwest Louisiana.

Studies are being conducted on how the seed can be bred to get a new variety that can be more widely used.

Plant Dallisgrass in the fall, he said, because moisture is important for establishment.

Dr. H.Y. Hanna told about new greenhouse tomato varieties that produce higher yields with larger, good-quality fruit.

This year’s fall tomato crop will be available Oct. 15, Hanna said. He said the station harvested 90,000 pounds of tomatoes during the past fall and spring crops and invited attendees back to see the plants in full bloom.

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Contact: Patrick Colyer at (318) 741-7430, or pcolyer@agcenter.lsu.edu

Writer: Mary Ann Van Osdell at (318) 741-7430, ext. 1104, or mvanosdell@agcenter.lsu.edu

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