Twilight Meeting 2019

This week, Pine Island Cranberry was glad to host the annual Cranberry Growers Twilight Meeting, run by Cesar Rodriguez-Saona of the Rutgers University Philip E. Marucci Center for Blueberry & Cranberry Research. In contrast to the American Cranberry Grower Association’s annual winter meeting, the focus here is less research-oriented and uses a more hands-on approach to addressing timely topics of importance to cranberry growers. Included on the agenda were such topics as troubleshooting cranberry disease problems and working with new cranberry varieties.

In addition to the importance of new research findings, it’s also a great chance for the cranberry community to get together face-to-face. Our team, and the other growers, work with Rutgers all the time, but it’s good to be able to sit down with other growers and find out if they’re having some of the same problems with pests, or fairy ring, or excessive heat. That additional perspective can help us troubleshoot our own applications.

“I thought the meeting overall went really well,” says Matt Giberson. “It was good seeing other growers; we haven’t really been able to get together since the winter meeting.” He got a lot out of the presentations this year, as well. “Peter’s research on the fairy ring was good; I liked the clarification on which briar causes the issue. Now we can target those and really go after them, both in and outside of the bog.” Even better, a lot of the treatment comes from our sustainability practices: “I think a lot of our prescribed burning here has helped kill the green briar, as well as mowing around the pump house and the gates.”

Matt also thought things looked bright for future research. “I enjoyed Jennifer’s talk as well; her research with the new rot resistance varieties sounded promising. We’re doing a test plot for her here and so are the Darlingtons, which will be useful for the industry as a whole.”

Twilight Meeting 2018

This week, some Pine Island team members attended the Cranberry Growers Twilight Meeting, hosted this year by the Philip E. Marucci Center for Blueberry and Cranberry Research and Extension. In contrast to the American Cranberry Grower Association’s Winter Meeting, the focus here is less research-oriented and uses a more hands-on approach to addressing timely topics of importance to cranberry growers.

The first scheduled talk was with Patricia Hastings of the Rutgers University Agricultural Extension Service, who has taken over the annual safety talk requirements after Ray Samulis retired! We all miss Ray, who’s been a mainstay for many years, but it’s wonderful to have someone willing to step in to assist with continuing education. Other talks included monitoring for cranberry insects, with Dr. Cesar Rodriguez-Saona; an update on cranberry diseases with Dr. Peter Oudemans; an update on weed management by Dr. Thierry Besancon; and finished up with a talk on frost damage in cranberries with Dr. Nick Vorsa. And, of course, there was a good dinner, provided by the hard-working staff of the Marucci Center!

In addition to the importance of new research findings, it’s also a great chance for the cranberry community to get together face-to-face. Our team, and the other growers, work with Rutgers all the time, but it’s good to be able to sit down with other growers and find out if they’re having some of the same problems with pests, or fairy ring, or excessive heat. That additional perspective can help us troubleshoot our own applications.

Cesar stepped in after Ray’s retirement to organize and host this year’s meeting, and we’re all very grateful for it. He set up a highly informative program and an excellent meal, just as he does for the annual Winter Meeting and Summer Field Day, year after year. Thank you, Cesar!

Cranberry Twilight Meeting 2015

This week, some Pine Island team members attended the Cranberry Growers Twilight Meeting, run by Ray Samulis, the Burlington County agent for the Rutgers University Agricultural Extension Service. In contrast to the American Cranberry Grower Association’s Winter Meeting, the focus here is less research-oriented and uses a more hands-on approach to addressing timely topics of importance to cranberry growers.

This was new Bog Renovation Manager Steve Manning’s first twilight meeting, and he found it especially useful for “putting names to faces. It’s good to meet everybody and get to know the other growers face-to-face,” he says.

Supervisor Matt Giberson also attended: “We work with Peter and Cesar and everyone [from Rutgers] all the time, but it’s good to be able to sit down with other growers and find out if they’re having some of the same problems with pests, or fairy ring, or whatever else,” he says. “It helps us troubleshoot our own applications.”

Being able to chat with other growers is a consistent theme among attendees. PIICM Manager Cristina Tassone says, “The best part of any meeting with all the growers is the chance to sit down and talk to everyone about what they’re seeing on their own operations. I’m always able to learn something.”

Last but definitely not least, it was wonderful to get a closer look at Integrity Propagation, the fine operation run by Abbott Lee. Abbott, Barbara, and Maryann were fantastic hosts, making everyone feel welcome and serving a delicious meal on the site of the best nursery in the state. We’re grateful to have such welcoming neighbors, and as always, it was a pleasure to see them!