HotFreeBooks.com
Northern Nut Growers Association Report of the Proceedings at the 41st Annual Meeting
Author: Various
Previous Part     1  2  3  4  5  6     Next Part
Home - Random Browse

That's what we can do in holding our contests to find good varieties. Those are the ones submitted by growers and others. They are in competition with nuts from other sources, and then the committee, or someone, goes over and rates them, and places them, just as has been done by Mr. Chase and others in their Carpathian walnut contest for members of the Northern Nut Growers' Association.

Now, at the present time we have no standard method for evaluating the nut. It's the opinion of the judges that do the scoring or rating which determines the placing that the nuts get. Well, now, that's one of the things that we members of the Northern Nut Growers' Association have been working on for a long while, but we still haven't arrived at any definite place.

Well, then, what's the next step that we take up? The next thing we do, some growers find out that a Persian walnut from Mr. Shessler, for example, placed second in the contest this year. They will get some scions from Mr. Shessler, or somebody else, and they will make a few grafts and grow some trees, and then they will make a study of these nuts and find out how well they do and what they are like under their conditions, and that's about as far as it goes.

Well, now, we cannot continue to do that kind of a job, as I see it. If we go back over the reports of the Northern Nut Growers' Association we will find that this matter of varieties is discussed in a very large majority of the papers that have been presented. But those that have taken part in investigations and in advising the public, like those in the Extension Services of the colleges, those teaching in the universities, those doing research, like myself, anybody who has to answer correspondence from would-be nut growers, almost always get the question, "What variety should I plant?" Then they put it up to me or Dr. McKay, or Dr. Colby, and think that you could just name right and left, and they ask, "What varieties shall we plant?" They put you right down on the spot. Here you are, you are supposed to be a real expert, know all things, and they are asking you for advice, and they will take that advice and carry it out.

Now, today it puts a fellow in an awfully hot spot, because as you read the reports of the Northern Nut Growers' Association you find that there is absolutely no unanimity of opinion. Every grower is absolutely certain in his ideas, and they are different from every other grower's.

Well, you can't recommend them all. It's really impossible. Now, this is one of the things that the Northern Nut Growers have been dealing with all of these years. This is the forty-first annual meeting. You'd have thought in 41 years we'd have come up with something, but we haven't yet. Now, I feel that it's about time that we stop and take stock of our situation.

I am not going to do the talking tonight, I am just making a few suggestions and trying to direct the thought a little bit. But one of the nuts that we have done so much with and have said so much about in our reports is the black walnut. It's very interesting to read the reports on varieties of black walnuts and how those who have grown black walnuts differ in their opinion, regardless. Well, I don't know. When I get a letter coming in from most anywhere in the country wanting to know what variety of black walnut to plant, do you know what I tell them?

MR. CALDWELL: Let them find out for themselves.

DR. CRANE: No, sir, they will never find out, not in their lifetime. I tell them to plant Thomas. Thomas, Thomas Thomas! Why?

MR. KINTZEL: Because we know more about that than any other.

DR. CRANE: That is right. I expect there are four or five times as many Thomas walnuts propagated and sold by nurserymen in the United States as all other varieties.

MR. CORSAN: It always has a bigger crop, too.

DR. CRANE: It bears, that's one thing. It may not always fill, but Thomas is a good variety. But we in the Nut Growers' Association haven't the nerve to come out and say the Thomas is a good variety. It has its faults. I know I am going to be wrong in a lot of cases by planting Thomas.

MR. CORSAN: But don't plant it outside the peach belt.

DR. CRANE: Well, the peach belt is an awful lot of territory. I know I am going to be wrong, but I know I am going to be safer with Thomas variety than I would be with some of the others.

Now, I think that it's time, and I think that the biggest thing that the Northern Nut Growers' Association can do is to give very serious thought and take action at this meeting some way looking towards the Association's giving consideration to methods and means whereby we can properly evaluate varieties that we have that are growing so that we can recommend and tell others the varieties that they should grow.

You know, here is the situation exactly. In the territory of the Northern Nut Growers we don't have a commercial industry at the present time. I doubt if there is a single family of the Northern Nut Growers who are here that depend on the sale of nuts for their living. Well, when your living depends on something, you take an awful lot of interest in it. And that has been true in the case of apples, for example. I don't know how many there are, but twenty years ago or more there have been fifteen or sixteen thousand apple varieties that have been described and have been planted and propagated, and you can name all of the commercial apple varieties grown in the United States almost on the fingers of your hands. That is, the important ones. Oh, the list has grown, would probably take in 200, but that 190 hardly make a drop in the bucket as compared to the ten big ones.

Well, the same thing is true with peaches. The Elberta peach just is completely outstanding. It's a big commercial peach. Now, in all of the Association here, almost every paper that is presented always has some commercial aspect mentioned in the paper, but we could never have any commercial industry as long as we are fooling with a lot of these varieties with nobody giving them the serious consideration that they deserve, in an effort to properly evaluate them.

This evaluation of a variety is our problem. I have given an awful lot of thought to it over the years and how to get around it, how to come up with the proper answers within the near future so that we can be of help to others and stop a lot of our amateurs, those who are attracted to the industry, from making mistakes and getting discouraged. That is the problem. And that is the thing that I want all of you to be thinking about tonight and help us with the suggestions.

Now, we could just start almost, I expect, in dogfights, if we were to conduct this round table to get to discussing the different qualities or desirability or other aspects among varieties, and each fellow would be right, because I know there wouldn't be agreement. It would make an interesting round table, but I don't know how constructive it would be. So I have tried in these preliminary remarks to get you to thinking about this problem, of evaluation.

Now, there is one other way that we could go about it. For years we have had in the Northern Nut Growers Association a group of officers that are known under the title of State Vice-Presidents, and I think if you judge by their performance in the past, the main reason that we have had these State Vice-presidents is that we were attempting to confer some honor on somebody, the honor being in having them so designated and their names published as State Vice-presidents in the proceedings. In many cases their performance hasn't warranted that honor, because, after all, a vice-president is supposed to be a working vice-president, not an ornament. The ornament is supposed to be the president, if we have any such thing. At least, that's what I have heard. I have never been president. And I have thought that if in the consideration of our State Vice-presidents we select the ones who are particularly active and very much interested in this variety problem and in the Northern Nut Growers' Association, that we might take up this variety problem and get us information by two ways.

One would be through surveys made in their states by contact with the growers, either personal contacts or by letters. Then those reports could be assembled, and we could have our variety committee over all, so the Association could attempt to evaluate. That would be one start.

Another thing would be that our State Vice-president in collaboration with the President, would appoint a state committee. Now, we have a lot of growers in some states that are vitally interested. In Pennsylvania, for example, and in Ohio and New York we have a lot of growers who are members of this or state associations that are vitally interested in this thing. You have a State Vice-president appointing a committee in collaboration with the president of the National to evaluate the variety situation as it exists in their state.

Now, we would expect them to do some honest work on this thing and come up with a report in which the different members could agree. Then we would be nearer getting unanimity of opinions. We have got to get this some way so that we can agree upon what we do with the answers to individuals better than we have been doing in the past.

There may be some error to this. Well, you see, I know that some of you must be familiar with the New Jersey Peach Testing Association. I am not sure just what the name of it is, but it's something like that.

A MEMBER: New Jersey Peach Council.

DR. CRANE: It has been a great power and a great help in regard to the selection and evaluation of peach varieties in the State of New Jersey. In New Jersey the experiment station has had a peach breeding program going for a number of years. They have done outstanding work, and they have brought out some very good varieties. Well, the station has selected the good ones and discarded the poor ones, or what they thought were the poor ones. They call in members of this Peach Growers' Council, and they have the peaches evaluated. They are passing them on to the fruit growers. "Do you think, in your opinion, that this would be a good peach for us to grow? Is it better? Does it have better flavor than other peach varieties?" They will, out of that group, select some of these new ones, maybe. Then the New Jersey Experiment station will see to it that the trees of these varieties are propagated, and they are given to the members of that Association in order that they can plant them under their conditions and grow them to fruiting and see how they do.

Well, then, this committee still continues to evaluate them, and if the members of the Association say, "Well, that's a variety we should grow," then they will grow it. If they feel it isn't as good as some they already have, they throw it away and that's the end of it. But they don't clutter up the variety situation with a lot of poor stuff. And they make profits, because always two heads are better than one, even though one is a sheep's head, as the old saying goes. Well, when you get four or five or more in a group and they agree, you can be sure that their opinion is far better than five individual opinions or judgments.

I am very anxious to see that tonight we agree in open discussion of this whole variety evaluation problem and that we start work some way, somehow, towards working out some means whereby we can properly and more effectively and more quickly evaluate our varieties than we have up to this time. Now, that's the end of my story. The talk and the rest of it is up to you folks.

Mr. Anthony and Mr. Sherman have been working over here in Pennsylvania. They have found a lot of new material known only to a few people. They are just wringing their hands over there to know how in this wide world this stuff can be evaluated, the good saved, and that which is not worthy of doing anything with, well, "just pass it up" and let it go. That's the way we make profits.

Their experience is no different from all the rest. We have nut growers with whom I have had correspondence in years past who want to propagate material that this Association should have flatly condemned years ago, because the majority of the group here knows it is worthless, but they just haven't done it. Now, it's time that we change this thing, or I will tell you frankly in a lot of ways the Nut Growers' Association has become a social institution, rather than one which we learn from and recommend practices to the new groups that are coming on to keep them from making mistakes.

Now, I have talked from the bottom of my heart tonight, and I want some of the rest of you here to express your opinions and give suggestions as to how we might do that.

MR. WEBER: Dr. Crane, I think I will start the ball rolling, and I think Ohio has taken the lead in the very thing you have been talking about. It's the Northern Ohio group. They have been very active in finding out the better nut varieties that were suitable to Ohio conditions, both the black walnuts and the hickories. They have conducted contests, both for black walnut and hickories. They practice what they preach. They have traded their information. They are up in the northern part, and I am down in the southern part, too far to be included with them, so I am not blowing my own horn; I am blowing it for the other fellows. And I think they are a worthwhile group, and if you look to the membership in this Association in Ohio, I think it has the largest membership. And you get that Northern Ohio group, they test out varieties, and a man will fight for a particular one in his group against the variety from another. And so they are not afraid to stand up and say what they think.

But having done that, we need the aid of our different state agriculture groups. You must have a place where they can go and put those trees on a testing ground so the people can go there and see them. You can go there to this Ohio experiment station and you will see this variety growing, or you go over to the other branch and see this variety growing, and then when they find the state has taken it up, it gives them confidence more than a fellow blowing his horn for one variety against another variety.

You have to get the members in their own states to form their own local organizations and carry out what you have been talking about here and find out in their particular states which are the best varieties. And then you get a starting point, and each individual state's agricultural experiment station should take it up, follow it up, if they have the funds. Where if one individual gives his mite and then his health fails or life fails, why, he has contributed his mite, and it will be perpetuated. But if it's on my place or someone else's place, the next fellow doesn't appreciate it, and if they need the wood handy, down comes that tree. It has no memories from then on, and it's not perpetuated.

So I think some of the Northern Ohio members—I think Mr. Smith is here, are there any other members? Silvis—deserve a lot of credit.

MR. McDANIEL: I would like particularly to hear if the Northern Ohio group has got together on a discard list. Have they agreed on any one variety they don't want to plant?

MR. STERLING SMITH: I am glad you brought out the black walnut. I am more familiar with it than with other species, and I have been personally thinking along your line for several years. We have in black walnuts probably over 200. I started to count them up one time. I got 196, and I know there were more than that, I don't know how many. And among those nearly 200 varieties of black walnuts I am confident there must be 150 at least that aren't worth being grown—that is, in Northern Ohio. They may be good in some other places, or they may be worthwhile for experimental purposes. But to grow them for commercial means or for home use, they are not good varieties. And I have suggested to different ones eliminating them, or trying to work out, say, maybe 25 or 50 and then from those 50 try to pick out ten. There has not much been done on it. There is a lot of difficulty in a situation like that.

DR. CRANE: That's right.

MR. STERLING SMITH: Here is one thing: What one person has varieties which correspond with what his neighbor or somebody ten miles down the road will have? We will take Grundy, for example, or Rohwer, some of those. Two or three of them might have that, but the ten or fifteen other members in the near vicinity won't have that variety. That's one of the difficulties.

And I have thought personally that there should be some sort of committee set up along the line you suggested, not necessarily on state lines, but more on zone or regional lines.

DR. CRANE: Yes, sir, that's what I mean.

MR. STERLING SMITH: Because those suitable in Northern Ohio wouldn't necessarily be suitable in Southern Ohio, and so with any of the states along that tier of states. And I think there should be some type of committee set up to judge these different varieties as far as we can, and also to enlarge their testing plan.

Mr. Shessler, I believe, has somewhere in the neighborhood of 100 under test, maybe three or four of the same tree. For myself, I don't know exactly what I do have, somewhere between 40 and 50 varieties, but there are only about 10 or 12 of them bearing. And I have of late years started working on that line, having sort of a test orchard, having one or two trees of the several varieties so I can find out what to plant.

Not too many years ago I was in the position of the amateur who wanted to know what to plant. Should I plant Stabler, Ohio, Thomas? It was just like you spoke about concerning the inquiries that you have. I have earnestly read all the reports and have earnestly looked where I could get them in time for the current year. I read so I would know what the new varieties are and what different people's opinions on them were. And I think there should be a central committee, probably like you suggested.

And another suggestion I would like to make would be that before we permit, as far as possible, any further new varieties of black walnut to be mentioned or published, that they be passed upon by several of the members, oh, maybe ten of the members, at least, to learn what their opinion is before they are mentioned. Lots of times one or two persons have a good opinion of the nut, and immediately something is published about it, and as you say, immediately a half dozen fellows write for it, as in your Persian walnut contest. And it would be better if that nut weren't allowed to be named until it has been passed upon by a qualified group of, we will say, experts. And that same condition should be carried out with the Persian walnut and the hickories and northern pecans and other groups of nuts we are interested in.

MR. CORSAN: I'd like to suggest that we get started on this matter of varieties, because we can say an awful lot and then say nothing. I have tested a great many varieties of black walnuts, and as soon as I hear people talk about the Stabler walnut, I know they know nothing about nuts at all, because the Stabler has a crop on it only about once in twenty years, and then it's a small crop. It's a very good nut to eat and crack, but it's not for crops. As this gentleman says, the Thomas. We all know the Thomas. There is one point about the Thomas, you have got to keep it within just the northern limits of the peach belt where the peach will grow. There are years that come around when the Thomas will not mature. The frost will come on. It has a very thick outer shell, the hull, and the hull comes off the nut itself quite clean. And then we hear people talking about the Ohio. Now, what about it? Well, it's a monster nut when you look at it on the tree, but knock the thick hull off of it, the strong, sturdy hull, and there's only a little nut in it. Yet you have something that cracks well enough. The nuts I would condemn right away are the Ohio and Stabler. No doubt about it.

Now the Cresco, very, very rich! That tree will actually kill itself, just overbearing. You know a tree can kill itself. Some people kill themselves having 24 or 30 children, but that's about what that tree will do.

Then we have the nut that years ago I saw, the Snyder, and I said to Mr. Snyder, "Look, it's a sure nut." He said, "Never saw it." He looked at it, examined it, and it's a marvelous nut. I think I have the backing of our friend, Mr. Gilbert Smith. I think he'd back me in saying that that is one of the best nuts in the world, even with the Thomas.

But we don't quite want to reduce—comb down the list of varieties like the apple grower has. When you go to Boston and ask a peddler or hawker about "apples," he won't know what you are talking about. Apples?—they wonder what the word is. It is "McIntosh." They will go around the street shouting, "McIntosh, McIntosh." You won't hear the word "apple" in Boston, it's "McIntosh."

Now, let's get down to nuts, and let us know our nuts.

MR. CALDWELL: (New York State College of Forestry.) I suppose this is my first time at a meeting of this sort, and probably I should observe with a critical mind. But when you speak about a committee to pass upon varieties, immediately I start wondering exactly what you mean by a variety, and then I start wondering what your approach is in picking that so-called variety.

First of all, a "variety" that you use is not really a variety. It is just a vegetation of one particular tree that you happened upon. You decided by chance it was a tree you wanted to use and then passed it around to your friends and decided you want it.

DR. CRANE: I want to correct you, for one reason: It is truly a horticultural variety or clone that has just as much standing or identity as the botanist's or forester's "variety."

MR. CALDWELL: It is a clone, and I agree with you, but a variety seems—

DR. CRANE: You are speaking from the forester's point of view.

* * * * *

MR. CALDWELL: That's why I make this other statement.

DR. CRANE: When you have got something by controlled breeding, you don't know when you have got it. That's the whole story in a nutshell.

Now, I am going to tell you about using controlled breeding. We started almond breeding in California, where we have one of the biggest commercial nut industries in the country. We started almond breeding in 1920 with the best known almonds. In the 30 years of almond breeding we have introduced two varieties. We had a panel of 125 commercial almond growers who decided on those two varieties out of more than 20,000 known controlled crosses that were made of trees that were grown to fruiting. But it took a panel of 125 commercial growers to determine whether or not these two varieties, the Jordanolo and the Harpareil, were commercial varieties.

Those two varieties were planted. The nurserymen planted them, the grower took them over, and they couldn't grow enough trees to supply the demand. These two varieties have been introduced for commercial planting now for 14 years. Of the two, one has stood the test of time, and it stands now as probably the second most important almond variety in all the United States, has been taken to foreign countries and is being extensively propagated. One of them made the grade, the Jordanolo. The Harpareil is still in the running, but it is down with the 30 or 40 varieties that are of lesser importance.

MR. CALDWELL: Can you reproduce that result?

DR. CRANE: No.

MR. CALDWELL: Then you don't know what that is or the happenstance that got it.

DR. CRANE: Certainly, because you don't know about breeding nut trees.

MR. CALDWELL: That's what I say should be learned.

DR. CRANE: In the first place, the chromosomes are so small and there are so many, that you can't identify them, and you can't tell which genes, and they have got a heterozygous population, and the variety is self-sterile and has to be cross-pollinated, so there is only one way from a horticultural standpoint by which we can do anything, and that is through clones.

DR. MacDANIELS: I think we are getting a little bit off.

DR. CRANE: We are off, way off.

DR. MacDANIELS: How to get a new variety I don't think is what we are trying to decide this evening. As I have looked at this whole field of what we are trying to do, I think we have analogies that we can point to. I think any project of this kind in nut varieties goes through various stages. The first is finding what material there is that is available that you can use. The next is the evaluation of that material to see what's worth keeping, and setting up your standards of what you are trying to get, and then from then on out perhaps breeding that sort of thing.

Now, as far as we are concerned, it seems to me the Northern Nut Growers' Association made a pretty good stab at surveying the materials available. In other words, I think an additional nut contest is not going to turn up the perfect nut. That is, we have one contest after another, and the ones that win the first prizes as the best nuts we can find are not markedly better. There is no great difference away from the average that we have had in the others.

I think that's a valuable thing to keep going along so we don't miss a trick and let anything be lost. But the next thing is to take these things that we have selected and evaluate them, and it seems tome that's exactly where we stand at the present time.

I also think that we should not in this situation get ideas that are too big. That is, if you get something that's impossible, you are licked before you start. If you have got to wait before you do anything and make a complete study of chromosomes of any one of these nut trees, 99.44 percent of the Northern Nut Growers Association might as well quit doing it. I am not capable of doing it, and Dr. McKay is probably the only one that is capable of looking at these things from that standpoint. But we have, it seems to me, to use the machinery we have and take some definite action which will be of some value within a year or perhaps two.

I agree that this idea of putting the State Vice-presidents to work is a very good thing. I think each one could if we could find the right man—take his state and divide it into two parts, and also take in groups of growers of nut trees that are members, and all the others that we can find, and get their pooled opinions on what varieties are available, together with the record of these varieties in that particular locality.

Then I think on the basis of one of the committees we have, that is, our standards and judging subcommittee, we could set that up in such a way that they could evaluate things about which there is some doubt.

But before we do that, we have got to clear the decks and adopt judging standards, standards by which we wish to work or to evaluate different varieties. I don't know whether anyone else has done more judging than I have or not, but I know I have given this a lot of attention through the years.

We had one system of judging which was worked out some years ago and was based on previous judging systems, and they went to a point where it seemed to me and to the others who were working along with me that they just didn't have any real basis in the factual situation that warranted its continuance; that is, a system which was based on percentages of kernel and penalties for empty nuts or flavor, and other things which could not be effectively measured. And they quit with that system and started out on a new tack. And to do that we got Dr. Atwood, who is head of the Department of Plant Breeding Genetics at Cornell, to go through some extensive tests which he applied as a biometrical statistical method, to find out what is the sample which will give you specific results and then to measure the qualities that give you what you want. And I think we are nearer that than before. But I think the schedules are relatively simple and haven't been used to any great extent. They need further testing.

But it seems to me that the Association as such must decide whether we want that schedule, making it an official schedule and going ahead on that basis.

Now, a judging schedule for nuts will not tell you anything about the tree; it will just tell you the characteristics of the sample. That's the first thing you want to find out: Is the nut itself intrinsically the type of thing you want to deal with? Then whether the tree bears annually or whether it alternates, or what diseases it is subject to. Those are other matters.

So I think this is a way out, or at least I suggested the plan we could go along with of putting the vice-presidents to work and setting up a committee under the title of judging and standards and try to bring out a report at the next session. It seems to me that would be right practical.

Where we go from there in production of new varieties I think should be a subject for a round table discussion sometime. I think the gentleman in forestry has a good idea. I think we will get a long way if you have proper control of the first elements of the first varieties, and from them we can build up. But it seems to me we have to be practical about things that we can do, then go ahead and do them.

DR. CRANE: Thank you, thank you.

DR. COLBY: I would like to add one point, that we must "zone" all these varieties. In a state as long as Illinois, over 400 miles long, growing conditions are different in the south than in the north. In the north we don't find that Thomas fills out very well and that's true also at Urbana in the central section of the state. Beck and Booth and some of the smaller nuts do fill out. The zones I mentioned may well run across several states where environmental conditions are similar.

I recall a little survey I made when I was honored by being president of your association several years ago, in which I tried to list all of the work that was in progress at the different national and state experiment stations, and most of those stations were carrying on some work in nut growing. I am sure that if you check that matter now, several years later, you would find that many more are carrying on investigations of that nature. They have expanded as much as their facilities will permit. For example, just the other day I visited the station at the University of New Hampshire, and there they were growing chestnut trees from seed that had been brought in from Korea. Little trees just two years from the seed were full of burs this year. Whether they are going to fill a place in New Hampshire remains to be seen. They were not as yet attacked by blight, but, of course, the trees were small, and there were no cracks in the bark as yet.

I am sure that most of the station workers know that you at Beltsville are extremely interested in testing new nuts as they become available. In cooperation with other workers it may be found that this variety is good in this zone and that variety is good in that zone. Nurserymen might well include maps of such zones in their catalogs.

DR. ANTHONY: Now that the experiences of the Northern Ohio growers has been brought up and you have mentioned many times your own experience as the Northern Nut Growers, I think the Northern Ohio group, a closely knit group, rather closely geographically related, has worked for almost twenty years, and hasn't gotten too far, and this organization has worked for 41 years and hasn't gotten too far. So that if we want to get anywhere, we must have a more closely knit organization with a better financial backing back of it and a better sense of responsibility back of it.

DR. CRANE: That's right.

DR. ANTHONY: You have mentioned the New Jersey Peach Council. We have been talking to our own Pennsylvania nut growers just as we have been talking to you today, telling them that they had a marvelous opportunity in all of these seedlings that we have been finding around the state. I think we have got them quite stirred up. But now they are considering the possibilities of organizing along the line of New Jersey Peach Council, a nut tester's council, which will be an off-shoot and part of the Pennsylvania Nut Growers Association.

Now, why have such a thing? Why have it in Pennsylvania? Why not have it as an organization of the Northern Nut Growers. The problem of varieties actually in its final analysis is a local problem. We have one area in Pennsylvania where on one side of the river it's McIntosh and the other side of the river it's Stayman. There are meteorological differences on each side of the Susquehanna River at Scranton-Wilkes Barre where the varieties shift. In the northern area we go from the northern hardwood with the beech-birch-sugar maple, into the oaks right in the state, with a third of the state in the northern hardwoods and the rest of the state in the oaks. We have no idea that any one variety of black walnuts or English walnuts or chestnuts will fill our needs any more than we know that any one apple will fill our needs, that one grape or one cherry will fill our needs, even one peach, not even the Elberta.

So it comes down to a regional problem, and for that reason I think that the state should be the logical center for your close knit organization to test your varieties.

There is another reason. I don't believe that any group of growers facing a problem of this magnitude can get very far unless you secure continuity by tying your organizations in some way to your state experiment station. I think you have got to have your continuity by making your tie-up there.

DR. CRANE: That's right.

DR. ANTHONY: I have said a number of times in our own group that one of the great disadvantages of our amateur nut growers in Pennsylvania is that most of them are 70 years old or older. That's fine for them, but it's hard on the industry, because just the time that they should be giving us the most valuable returns, they aren't there. So to secure the continuity you want, you are going to have to tie in your experiments with the experiment station. You are going to have to make a group, you are going to have to incorporate, because you are going to face the problem of propagation. You might have one good tree, and it's of no value for you, and you have got to plant it in more than one spot to know how good it is.

If the Delicious apple or Grimes Golden had appeared in our seedling blocks, we'd have thrown them away. I know we have thrown many things out at Geneva which in other places might have survived. We took a number of those and planted them in Pennsylvania and found them worthy of naming. That means you have got to propagate in more than one place and you have got to propagate in conditions where you know you have got the demand.

And all of that means that you have got to have a tight legal organization. Valuable as the Northern Nut Growers Association is, I don't think you are going to get it out of your present organization. I think you have got to find some way to condense your stuff into some tighter organization. In Pennsylvania I think it's going to be a nut tester's council, legally organized, financially responsible, tied up to the experiment station, if we can make it just as the New Jersey council is.

The New Jersey council was a success because they had the best possible tie-up between Morris Plains, 15 or 20 miles on the other side, and a good nursery in between. That's why they made a success.

The New York State Fruit Testing Association is a success because they have had continuity. Mr. King has been manager of that association for 25 years, I think, and you have a legal organization doing its own propagation where they know the material is true to name.

Use your vice-presidents all you can, use every committee that you have but you have to have something that's tighter.

DR. CRANE: Thank you. Just one comment that I want to make. You have suggested an awful big camel to get over. Now, we are trying to start. If we could just get a little start towards the end we could grow into it.

DR. ANTHONY: We have got to start.

MR. O'ROURKE: I am one of those unfortunate ones who is supposed to know everything when an inquiry comes in to the college. I happen to have the privilege of answering the nut inquiries at Michigan State College. The first thing people want to know is, "what varieties do I plant?" The second is, "Where do I buy them?" I am very sorry to say I can answer neither one of those questions at the present time satisfactorily to myself, nor to the people of the State of Michigan, and I feel that we do need action, and we need it quick in order that we can select a certain number of varieties that we can conscientiously recommend to the grower, and also a very few varieties to recommend to the nurserymen of the state so that they will propagate them and make them available to prospective customers.

MR. SLATE: I want to support Mr. Anthony's remarks that there are too many old men testing nut tree varieties.

DR. ANTHONY: Not too many, no.

MR. SLATE: And there are too many squirrels involved. If a man gets the idea that he is going to take up the nuts, by the time he accumulates a collection of nuts, when these come into bearing the squirrels get most of the nuts, and they don't seem to be very much concerned about evaluation. Then the man dies and the collection goes to pot. There must be some continuity, and as far as I can see, that will have to come through state experiment stations.

Now, just how you are going to get the experiment stations started in testing nut tree varieties, I don't really know. Many of the projects at the experiment stations are there because they are catering to the larger industries in the state, and sometimes the projects are there because somebody in an administrative position has an idea which he wishes to see developed.

Now, I would like to comment on the remark of our forester friend here, and I think he won't take offense at what I am going to say. It seems to me that the foresters are not in a good position to criticize the horticulturists. The forester's knowledge of variety improvement for a long, long time has been based upon the problem of lots of seed from certain geographical areas, and I feel sure that foresters as a class have only very, very recently become aware of the importance of the clone as we use it in horticulture.

Now, horticulturists, that is, pomologists, nut culturists, people who deal with ornamentals, have been keenly aware of the horticultural clone for a long, long time. There have been brought improvements into our cultivated plants through the hybridization of clones that all of the horticulturists are familiar with. The blueberry work done by the Department of Agriculture is probably the most striking example of this work, because it was all carried out during the lifetime of one man.

I feel that we will not get much further in searching for wild nuts. We have had contests for hickories and black walnuts, and I doubt whether we have made any very substantial increases. I feel certain, and I know there are a number here who will back me up, that future improvements, if they are to be really substantial—that is, if they are to be substantial advances over what we already have—such improvements will have to come through breeding work.

DR. McKAY: Mr. Chairman, I have been listening to these remarks, and I have been trying to think of some comment that could be made in connection with some practical suggestions that we could arrive at tonight, a starting point, perhaps, in connection with the chairman's remarks about doing something tonight at this meeting. I'd like to say that it seems to me that the thing we could probably do right now to start things off would be to have this regional committee or this group that represents a wide area, decide on, say, five varieties based on all the evidence that can be obtained as to which five would be most likely to succeed over a wide area.

Now, the chairman has commented at length on our lack of unanimity when it comes to varieties. I think most of that problem has come out of the fact that our information is all based on little, piecemeal bits of work done here and there, and it does not refer to variety testing over a wide area. Now with all due respect to Dr. Anthony's remarks about varieties being a local situation, we still have, as mentioned by the chairman, the apple situation. The varieties in the final analysis are going to be adopted over a wide area, and if our nurserymen and all our growers could know or understand that these five varieties have been selected by opinion of people that ought to know that those five varieties stand the best chance to succeed over a wide area, then we would have something definite to tie to.

The way it is now, we in our office feel that Thomas is probably the most widely adapted variety of black walnut we have, and probably the best performing variety. We are not sure, but that's our opinion. I might mention another variety, the Stabler. I think most people would agree that that is a variety that used to be thought well of, yet is no more, and so it is out of the picture. Those two varieties we have information about, based on a wide area of territory.

Now, it seems to me, coming down to something specific, what we could do here, or as soon as we can get to it, would be to have a large committee, a committee representing opinion over a wide area, come to some conclusion about the five varieties that will be the ones to test and to grow over a wide area and give our nurserymen or our growers something to tie to in the matter of selecting varieties to grow.

DR. CRANE: Thank you, Dr. McKay. There is one other comment that I want to make. I think that if we were to take a vote tonight in here, get an expression on the variety Stabler, we'd say, "Yes, it's a curious nut, it's a curiosity. Some trees sometimes bear single-lobe nuts in varying proportions. It is a fine nut when you get it, but they don't bear enough and they don't bear regularly enough. That is the criticism of the Stabler."

Yet we have nurserymen, lots of them, that are propagating Stabler and still selling them to people.

MR. McDANIEL: I know one nursery which has recently discontinued it. That's Armstrong, way out in California.

MR. CALDWELL: Why doesn't it produce a good nut? Can you answer that question?

DR. CRANE: It does produce a good nut when it produces.

MR. CALDWELL: If it doesn't produce all the while, why doesn't it? If you can solve that—

DR. CRANE: Why didn't you grow up to a six-foot-six guy weighing 250 pounds?

MR. CALDWELL: It would be physically impossible for me to do so with my constitution, which is what I am trying to apply to the nut trees.

MR. WILKINSON: Don't condemn it over all territories[6]. At my place, the Stabler produces nuts as regular as the Thomas, and in the nursery it outsells the Thomas two to one, if not more. I have handled nut sales for Mr. Weber's orchard, one of the largest black walnut orchards in the United States. When the people come there we will crack a Stabler walnut to make a customer out of them, and we have to get on to something else to keep them from buying all the Stablers first. And if I were planting a hundred walnut trees today, the majority of them would be Stabler. They have been bearing since 1918 when I started producing Stabler walnuts.

[6] The territory giving best reports on Stabler lies along the Mississippi and Ohio rivers from about Cincinnati to no farther south than Memphis.—J.C.McD.

DR. CRANE: That's what we are talking about tonight.

MR. CALDWELL: Yet your committee throws the thing out.

MR. CHASE: I'd like to say a few words. First off, I am in agreement with the idea of some sort of a regional testing set-up.

Now here we are getting into discussion about individual varieties, and that is not the purpose of this, as I understand, but all of you gentlemen have been propagating the various varieties simply because one has become available to you at a certain time, and you have grafted it. Our committee on varieties, of which I am a member, probably should be criticized, because we have not gathered that information from the folks who have grafted trees, and they are scattered over the region. We don't need the regional set-up, it's already set up. In other words, if we have varieties to be tested, we could have selected members in our group to graft it, if they do not already have it grafted. In a few years we can get some pretty definite information on a few varieties.

Now, in 1938, in our work we recognized the advisability of quickly doing something about the 100-and-some varieties existing in the proceedings, and finally we have culled that down to, I think, 43, which, on the basis of nut characteristics only, are very close together. Now, we started out in 1938 and established four or five test plantings containing the first ten varieties. Ten trees of ten varieties, a hundred trees in the planting. It took quite an area.

Since that time we have set out variety test plantings of 43 varieties scattered over seven states at various geographical locations within the seven states.

MR. KINTZEL: How many trees do you have in a planting now?

MR. CHASE: Twenty-five now. Twenty-five of five varieties. This work is being carried on at the state experiment stations in the Tennessee Valley. In fact, they have become more and more interested in the testing program which we have been trying to get them interested in, and we hope to have some information for our region on some of these varieties, the better varieties as we consider them.

But back to this problem. I think it is very simple to set out. I think the Varieties Committee—I believe Dr. Crane is chairman—

DR. MacDANIELS: You are chairman.

MR. CHASE: No. It has a job on its hands: first to find out what our members have. Certainly they are spread over the region we are interested in, aren't they? Well, it simply becomes a secretary's job to canvass our membership to find out which varieties we have, so that the Varieties Committee can go to work.

Let's be realistic. We are not going to influence all the experiment stations to do this work. It is not going to be practicable for them. They probably would very much like to do it, but it's not in the picture, as I see it now. Therefore, we are not going to wait, as our forester would have us wait, until we breed one. Let's get these good ones that we have got and cull them out so Dr. Crane can answer a letter without having a guilty conscience.

DR. CRANE: That's right. Folks, I want to make one comment on Mr. Chase's remarks—also Mr. Slate's remarks, about tying this work up to the experiment stations. There is one thing that, in my experience, we can't place too much dependence on. Of course, in the Department of Agriculture our main interests that we are likely to contend with are our four major nut industries in the country. That is pecans, Persian walnuts, filberts and almonds. In the case of those, we can get very little help from the experiment stations, with the possible exception of California.

MR. CORSAN: There is lots of truth in that.

DR. CRANE: They haven't got the interest in it. They haven't got the money, they haven't got the support. They depend more on the U. S. Department of Agriculture. Well, the Department of Agriculture can't carry it. Hence, it comes back to growers. The grower organizations, even in the great state of California, with all their great wealth and abundance, go to the California experiment stations more than to any other experiment stations in the United States. But the commercial growers out there have already set up organizations for the testing of these varieties and for trial plantings. You can't come back to the experiment stations and just as has been pointed out, many of the experiment stations have only one or two or, at most, three different kinds of nuts of their own. They have got to go out just the same as we do with the growers; we co-operate with them. And we have already got a lot of these experimental plantings. There is Sterling Smith with—I have forgotten how many he said—60 walnut varieties, and Mr. Shessler with a hundred, there in Ohio.

I'd like to know from Sterling Smith and Mr. Shessler which are the best five walnut varieties.

MR. KINTZEL: In that section?

DR. CRANE: In that section, that's what I want to know.

MR. CORSAN: That's what we are here for tonight. Let us talk it over.

MR. WEBER: Put the question to him, Dr. Crane, and let him tell you what he thinks to be his best five. Put him on the spot right now.

DR. CRANE: That would be just a waste of time, because that would be his opinion. It's just like what Mr. Wilkinson says, that if he were planting a hundred walnut trees they would be Stablers.

MR. WEBER: In his particular locality.

MR. CORSAN: And he may be quite right in that locality. I am not going to dispute it.

DR. CRANE: But we want to know how some other folks agree with him and study this situation over and find out why Stabler was doing its stuff right there.

MR. CALDWELL: That's what I asked you.

DR. CRANE: And how much evidence did he base his conclusion on? That's what we have got to discover.

MR. CORSAN: I base my conclusion on the experiment station that put out the Redhaven peaches. Dr. George Slate here has made a very big point, and it went to pot. Those words there are what we have got to be careful about, that our institution doesn't go to pot. I have started affairs that went with a fury, and when I let go of them, they just went to pot.

Take Michigan State College's Bird Sanctuary, the W. K. Kellogg Bird Sanctuary. What is it now? A colorless affair. It's gone to pot, and we want to see that the nut growers don't allow their institutions to go to pot.

DR. CRANE: That's right: You hit the nail on the head, there, but it's up to the nut growers to see that they don't. And how many experiment stations or their actions have been influenced by the Northern Nut Growers Association?

MR. CORSAN: I have built upon the experience of J. F. Jones and Neilson and Professor Slate and all of them. Now, here is what I did. I picked out a section of land that floods every spring, about four times the width of this room and has sometimes eight feet of water. Now, nobody is going to build houses on that and tear my nut trees down. They are there forever, and it will always be a nut haven, and nobody will be able to destroy it. Now I have got to be careful to see that it doesn't go to pot, as Professor Slate said, by selecting some brains to succeed me, to carry on. Is that right, Professor Slate?

PROFESSOR SLATE: (Nods.)

MR. SILVIS: We can't spend too much time thinking about the atomic bomb. We can't think too much about getting an organization to start this, it just takes somebody to go ahead and do it. We don't need experiment stations to develop the nut, either. The nut was here a long time before the experiment station was ever developed.

I wrote in a letter here two or three or maybe four years ago—I think it was after the Norris meeting, to every vice-president in NNGA that commercial possibilities of a nut must first be apparent before any experiment station is interested, because then money is involved, capital has been invested. Before capital can be invested must come coordination. Coordination is labor. That's grafting or flowering, or whatever you want to call it—back-breaking exercise.

I still think we have the organization here. We don't need to argue about any more organization. We have organization right here in our own State Vice-presidents. I tried to bring that out, the suggestion as to the fact that I thought maybe the State Vice-president would serve on a perpetual committee, if he lived into perpetuity, to get these zones within his state. If Illinois is 400 miles long and he has 16 zones of climate, let him get 16 plantings of the same kind of a nut in those 16 zones. The same way with Texas, the same way with Montana or Ohio.

MR. SHERMAN: I think both Mr. Stoke and Mr. Davidson thought that it might be a good idea to give somebody a job instead of an honorary position by naming a State vice-president for that sort of a job. Now, we have got to start somewhere, and that would be a good place to start: give somebody something to do, like some of these other dead people that will feed these nuts that Corsan was telling us about this afternoon.

But the commercial possibilities are always apparent. You can subsidize them, you know. If you can get enough money behind it, you can subsidize it. I think our problem still is the same as it was before: We are still trying to find out what the other guy has that's better than our own. And if we have got five nuts that are any good, I'd like to know about them myself.

DR. CRANK: That's right.

MR. SILVIS: I will make this statement in favor of the Homeland black walnut—if we are on black walnuts. I came in a little late on account of the mud here. The Homeland is growing in Massillon, and Mr. Stoke sent me the scions. All it did was produce staminate bloom. I gave some of the wood to John Gerstenmaier in Massillon. It is doing very well.

I also favor the Thomas black walnut, and I think the hickories and everything else have commercial possibilities. Just let somebody go ahead and correlate these factors. Life is very short. I have copies of these letters, four letters out of 50 or 60 that I prepared.

DR. CRANE: Mr. Jay Smith. We are going to have to limit this to not over three minutes' time.

MR. JAY SMITH: My experience is somewhat limited. I have a few seedling trees that are good, and I have a few named varieties that seem to be good. I just want to point out one reason why we should have a number of varieties. One of my choice varieties in my back yard has five nuts on it this year, and it has produced a good crop other years. And the answer seems to be that the pollen came out during a period of very rainy weather and the tree did not fertilize. Now, other trees apparently blossomed before or after, mostly after, but this one was a rather early blooming tree, and I have more nuts on other types of trees.

One of my good seedling trees has very few nuts on this year. Possibly that might be for a similar reason. So regardless of how good these varieties may be, we must have several varieties. Don't put all your eggs in one basket.

I have some good filberts that came from Geneva, and they have had trouble with wood damage due to the beetles laying eggs in the wood, and the beetles may possibly have come from nearby willows. And I have had some of the willow growing, too, because I thought it looked nice. Now I have cut down all of the willow, and there is some birch in the neighborhood, and I understand the birch harbors this same thing, some variety of Agrilus beetle,[7] and we have a lot of angles to work on in order to get rid of our drawbacks. And we have the matters of season and soil and elevation. It's quite a big problem.

[7] Agrilus anxius Gory, the bronze birch borer.

DR. CRANE: It is a big problem, but we will never settle it the way we are going. We have got to do better.

MR. STOKE: I don't know whether I have anything that is really pertinent to say. The thought I had in mind should have come sooner. That is: Why are we growing nuts? There are two angles from which we can approach that, two natural angles. Here is the angle of the amateur that wants to grow nuts to eat. After all, that's what I suppose they are for. There is the commercial grower who wants to grow them to make a profit, and I think we should approach our subject, evaluation of nuts, from either one of those two angles, or work along two different channels. I think that's very necessary.

You take the Elberta peach. If you want a peach in your back yard, you are not going to plant Elberta peaches to eat. If you want to make a commercial success, you are going to plant the Elberta, if you know anything about it. Are we commercial nut growers, or do we grow them for home consumption? Go downstairs and look at the nuts we judged last year and the eye appeal of some that didn't rate at all would sell those nuts ahead of the prize winner. But if you want to grow them to eat, those three prize winners are the best nuts down there.

And if we thrash over this field, I think we have got a definite idea of what we are after, and I think we should have had that to start with.

DR. CRANE: That's right, and there is one other point of view, too. There is a third reason for growing nut trees. That is simply for the ornamental value. That hasn't been dealt with.

MR. WELLMAN: I'd just like to ask a question. There has been some reference to apples here. I don't know very much about it, but I understand that the American Pomological Society got out a list of apples nearly a century ago, which they have kept changing and adding to and subtracting from over all of that time. Is there any analogy there that would help us in anything we can do? They made mistakes and put apples on there that they are sorry they put on and they have had to take off. People don't use those varieties in one part or another part of the country for some reason. Is there any reason why we shouldn't follow some suggestion such as that, stick our necks out and go ahead?

DR. CRANE: That is right, no reason in the world why you can't.

MR. SHERMAN: I'd like to do some commenting. You are doing here tonight what you have done at the last meeting. You have talked varieties. I thought the purpose of that was to get a committee appointed some way, some organization that will say, "Here are certain varieties that should be tested. Make arrangements to propagate those varieties and have them tested."

I made a demonstration right downstairs here; some of you witnessed it. You have got some black walnuts that you are cracking. I went out to the car and got some that would crack in four nice quarters that laid out. I tried it again. Sure, they cracked and cracked good. Where can I get some trees? There are a lot of you right here who would take them just that quick (snapping fingers), take them home and test them.

This meeting was to get an organization or discuss a means of getting an organization that will get those trees propagated and spread out for testing. Now, I think it's just as simple as A, B, C. It's a prolonged job. You have got to have an organization that's going to perpetuate itself for the next century, because if you start that organization right it will be here a hundred years from now, and you will be just as busy a hundred years from now as you are right now.

What that committee has got to be, whether it is a statewide or a nationwide, Northern Nut Growers or Pennsylvania Nut Growers or Ohio Nut Growers, is a committee of five—I will say five, you can make it 10 or 15—that will say, "Now, for Ohio here are ten varieties that we think should be tested. Get 50 trees of each of those ten propagated and spread out over Ohio and find out where they will grow." That will apply for some of Western Pennsylvania, too. It isn't just state lines, understand, but the main thing is to get that variety tested before your nurseryman is spreading it all over everywhere.

And how can you get it tested? You have got to have some trees propagated, and you have got to have some nurseryman who knows about the propagation. And I will say a lot of you nurserymen, and there are a lot of you here, take it or leave it, don't know how to propagate a decent black walnut tree. I have had them sent to me with a 6-inch sprout growing in the top of a club. I have had others two years old with a nice whip five feet high, one-year-old growth. You have got to have good trees. You have got to have a nurseryman who knows how to propagate those ten and send them out.

Now, the next meeting was to find out what sort of an organization you have got to have to get that done, not talk about a Stabler, whether this is good or that is good. That's what you have been doing for 40 years.

MR. SLATE: It takes more than a committee, it takes land, labor, tools, supervisory people.

MR. SHERMAN: I can point to 25 members that will take ten varieties that they will test—and pay for them.

MR. O'ROURKE: I would like to say, are we going to wait until we test all of those varieties? We have no information to answer all those letters that are coming in. We want something, not tomorrow, we want something today, that we can give them, information which, at least to the best of our knowledge of today is accurate. And the only way we can get that accurate information is to get a committee together in each region.

MR. SHERMAN: That won't take care of the future. That will answer our present questions to the best of our knowledge, but we want an organization that will take care of the future.

DR. CRANE: There is one other thing that I should mention. We in the Department of Agriculture have released a number of new varieties. We have got others coming on, not only your chestnuts, but filberts and others, pecans, and so on. But we haven't got any organization in any way, shape or form. We can put these out with the growers who test them, but gee whiz, we have put them out and put them out; and look what kind of information we get. We haven't got facilities or the money or anything else to follow up. We have got to have some organization some way, somehow, that could take this material and test it, at least give some idea as to how it performed.

Now, then, the question is what kind of an organization? If the Northern Nut Growers is not the one that should do it, what kind of an organization can be effective to do it?

MR. CORSAN: Now I'd just like to say one more thing tonight. That chestnut blight, I honestly believe, was a godsend to this country. I can remember way back when I'd go into a store and buy a lot of these Paragon chestnuts in New York City in the finest grocery store, and they were crammed full of weevils. Now, the chestnut blight came, and it has about annihilated the weevil, because there was no chestnut to weevil in. And I would like to have some report about the weevil.

MR. WILSON: They are in Georgia.

MR. McDANIEL: They are in Virginia and Indiana.

DR. MacDANIELS: Mr. Chairman, I suppose I should have the chair. This is a committee of the whole.

DR. CRANE: That's right.

DR. MacDANIELS: I have a right to speak,

DR. CRANE: That's right.

DR. MacDANIELS: I say we have always come down to the point, here we are, where do we go from here and what do we do next? There, in a word, "Here we are." Lots of discussion, much of it irrelevant. I will just propose, along the lines I spoke before, that what comes out of this is that We recommend to the incoming president to organize a survey and testing campaign along the lines that seem to meet with some agreement; namely, getting the state vice-presidents busy in finding out the regional evaluation of different varieties.

Supposing we try black walnuts; just one species for this year, and that he organize his state according to zones and come up with that information with regard to that state.

And the other thing would be that these findings be sent to the committee. We have a committee on surveys and one on judging and standards, and let that be compiled by them jointly or set up in some way that would seem to be effective and come up next year with this overall evaluation along those lines.

I'd make that motion.

DR. COLBY: Second the motion.

DR. MacDANIELS: Any discussions?

DR. ANTHONY: In Pennsylvania two of us have worked full time for a year, and I am not sure we'd be able to evaluate the black walnut yet.

DR. CRANE: We are not evaluating the black walnut, though.

DR. ANTHONY: You are asking one man to do that, your vice-president.

DR. CRANE: He is to appoint a committee.

DR. MacDANIELS: Any way he chooses to mark them out.

DR. ANTHONY: He is organizing a nut tester association.

DR. MacDANIELS: No, an evaluation association. As I would say, you have the Ohio Association already formed; that would be their problem to come up with an answer for their state. We have the Pennsylvania organization already organized. They will come up with some sort of evaluation: No. 1, Thomas, No. 2, whatever it is, No. 3, whatever it is. Now, in your other states we don't have an organization; do it some other way. I don't care how they do it.

DR. CRANE: There are some others in these other states, too, that are already formed.

Any other discussion?

(Whereupon, a vote on the motion was called for, and it was carried unanimously.)

MR. SILVIS: Just one thing. It was made with the express purpose that we start maybe just the black walnut. At the same time in certain areas you may as well raise a hickory or a Persian right along with the black walnut, or the filbert.

MR. McDANIEL: No objection, but this year we are surveying the black walnut named varieties only.

MR. SALZER: I am just a buck private in the rear rank, but we have been having little local meetings in New York, and they appointed me vice-president for the State of New York, the Empire State, and here Ohio has their organization, Pennsylvania has their organization. What am I going to do? I can work Western New York, but I have got to have someone to help me in Eastern New York.

DR. MacDANIELS: Take the membership list and take the men who can do it.

DR. CRANE: There are a lot of good men in Eastern New York.

Now, if there isn't anything else, I will turn the meeting back to Dr. MacDaniels.

DR. MacDANIELS: Thank you, Dr. Crane. I think these talks are good for the soul. We can let our hair down and know what we all think. And I do think it's important that we do make some progress on this particular problem. I think this is one way to do it. There may be a half dozen ways and other ways better, but at least you have to agree on something and go on from there.

Now, the meeting in the morning begins at nine o'clock, the full program.

If there is no further business, then, this session is adjourned.

(Whereupon, at 10 o'clock, p.m., the meeting was adjourned, to reconvene at 9 o'clock, a. m. the following day, August 29, 1950.)



TUESDAY MORNING SESSION

August 29, 1950

DR. MacDANIELS: I want to make the remark that this isn't church, you can sit up front if you want to.

The first paper this morning has to do with a nut tree disease that is bothering a good many of us, I think, particularly in Michigan, as you recall from Mr. Becker's paper, the Bunch Disease of Walnuts, by Dr. H. L. Crane and Dr. J. W. McKay. I don't know which one is going to give it. Dr. McKay?



The Bunch Disease of Walnuts

Discussion

(Manuscript too late for publication.)

(Drs. Crane and McKay reported that there had been little further development in knowledge regarding the walnut bunch disease since 1948, when G. F. Gravatt and Donald C. Stout of the U.S.D.A. Division of Forest Pathology reported on it with illustrations at the N.N.G.A. meeting (see our report for 1948 pp. 63-66.) Since then the state of California has prohibited the entry of all walnut nursery trees and scions from the Rocky Mountain states or farther east.—Ed.)

DR. CRANE: I'd like to make one additional remark. You see, we call this trouble "bunch disease" rather than "brooming," to distinguish it from other diseases that are caused by known parasites. We have a disease very similar to this one affecting walnuts and pecan and hickory, and that one has been studied more carefully than has the bunch disease. It is unquestionably caused by virus, and in our pecan orchards we have a situation that exists that is a parallel to what it is in the black walnut. The variety Stuart practically never has shown any symptom of the bunch disease. Yet it performs very much like a lot of our black walnuts do. They just don't bear; they don't have the proper foliage; they don't make the proper kind of growth. So we are not sure whether they are symptomless carriers, that is, in terms of the lack of expression of virus growth and this bunchy condition on them.

Really, we feel that all people that are interested in the walnuts and that are trying to grow them should make careful observations on these trees to study just what the situation is, how it develops, and note the performance of these trees that become diseased; because we feel that it's a much more serious thing than people appreciate at the present time.

In much of Eastern Shore Maryland and of the area around Washington and Beltsville and over in Virginia, a great majority of the trees are affected by it, particularly Japanese walnuts of all types and the butternuts. I feel it is so bad on Japanese walnuts and butternuts that they shouldn't be propagated in the area.

MR. McDANIEL: I had the bunch growth developed on a new species this year in my planting in north Alabama, a 12-year-old tree of Juglans rupestris. It is a growth that looks practically the same as the bunch disease on the Japanese walnut. I believe that's the first time it's been observed on that species. There are no butternuts or Japanese walnuts on the farm. There are dozens of black walnuts (seedlings and several varieties) none of which show the bunch symptoms. However, it is typically developed on some Japanese trees a few miles away.

At Whiteville, Tenn., Dr. Aubrey Richards has a suspicious looking tree among some two year old seedlings of Juglans major from Arizona seeds.

MR. CHASE: I'd like to add to that, too, Mac. In our walnut arboretum we had some rupestris, and I had been suspicious of its being diseased for a number of years. I finally have decided that it had the bunch disease, and those trees down at Norris have all passed out.

MR. McDANIEL: My tree came from Norris, 10 years ago.

DR. MacDANIELS: Juglans rupestris killed by the disease.

MR. STOKE: Just because this is a little contradictory to what you have heard, I want to say that my experience has been this: I have an old nursery—well, there is a butternut in the row and also heartnut—Japs. One of those Japs has had the bunch disease for six or eight years. None of the others has been affected. It was a variety I wanted to perpetuate. I took an apparently healthy scion from that and put it on another tree, and that grafted tree also had the disease. But there has been no evidence of contagion from this Jap to the other Japanese, butternuts and black walnut in the same planting in the immediate neighborhood—in fact, they crowd each other. That's a statement of fact.

I spoke a little while ago of an old black walnut tree that had that disease for a number of years and none other in that planting had it.

MR. O'ROURKE: Is there any correlation between the age of the tree and the expression of the disease?

DR. McKAY: It's been our observation that we haven't had it in our nursery to any extent. We have seen it in the nursery of J. Russell Smith on Persian walnut. It, to my knowledge, is the only place where we have seen it on nursery trees. It may be that our nursery happened to be free of the inoculum, because it's been about a mile from the orchards.

MR. O'ROURKE: Would you by any chance think it might be seed borne?

DR. McKAY: We have no information on that virus.

MR. GILBERT SMITH: I have one statement to put in at this time. Dr. Crane questioned whether the Japanese walnut should be grown. I wonder if the Japanese walnut might not be a safeguard in the area where they don't have the disease, in that you will detect the disease the quickest on the Japanese walnut, and in that way anyone would become wise to it, rather than if it was in the black walnut. It might be so insidious that it could be well spread before persons knew they had it at all. I wonder if the Japanese walnut, through its quickness in showing the disease, might not be a safeguard to the other walnuts?

DR. MacDANIELS: That's a technique that's used with some other plants.

MR. CORSAN: I go on the principle that a tree that's well fed might not resist every disease, but it will resist a great many diseases and most of the diseases, if it's well fed. Now, the feeding of trees is very important. I noticed that in going back and forth between Florida and Toronto. I examine the pecan situation every fall and spring, and just to think of Stuarts—you know the size of Stuart pecan—coming in good, big crop of nuts that size (indicating with fingers). Can you see that? And you know that is less than half the size the Stuart should be. It's a great nut for cracking by machinery. In fact, a lot of people grow nothing but Stuart. And last year they had such a crop. Last year I pointed to a farm right near the highway. "Do you see that? For years I have been trying to get you to put that sawdust, which is nearly 40 feet high in a pile, around your pecans and see the vast difference in your pecans." You know there was no rain down there all last summer, and the pecans were half the proper size. Now, that sawdust would keep the moisture in. I am a great believer in the use of sawdust. It's a tree product itself and it has some of the constituents of what the pecan should feed on.

As Dr. Waite told us one time in Washington—you will probably remember the remark he made about the pecan trees in an orchard which were absolutely fruitless year after year. He went through that orchard, and he saw a pecan here and a pecan there that had a good, big crop right among the empty trees. He examined them and found signs driven into the trees, and some of the signs were put up with zinc covered nails. Those signs that had the steel covered nails had no nuts on, but those that had zinc in had a huge crop. It excited the growth of the female blossom.

Now, we have got an awful lot to discover, as you gentlemen say in this nut culture, way beyond the imagination of the human mind.

DR. MacDANIELS: We had better limit discussion to this particular problem. Is there more comment?

MR. McDANIEL: On that problem, I have observed the brooming in the heartnut seedlings about three years old, which were seedlings of the Fodermaier variety growing at Norris in the late 30's. Brooming developed in some of them in either the second or third year from seed.

DR. MacDANIELS: That answers their remark about the young trees.

MR. SLATE: A plant that is well fed and making very vigorous growth may be more attractive to the insect vector. Therefore, a healthy tree might take it.

MR. McDANIEL: These trees were very vigorous.

DR. MacDANIELS: How many growers of nut trees have this bunch disease on their property?

MR. KINTZEL: Black walnuts?

DR. MacDANIELS: On anything at all. (Showing of hands.) There are at least a dozen.

When Mr. Burgart up in Michigan finds out that the limiting factor practically cleans him out, there is this question of bunch disease with witches'-broom resulting from ground deficiency. I know in the Wright plantings in the vicinity of Westfield they had brooming trees of the Japanese walnut which apparently recovered after treatment with zinc. And, of course, we know on the West Coast you get witches'-broom in the Persian walnut which cannot be cured by zinc.

Is there any other discussion on this point?

(No response.)

We will go on to the next paper.

MR. CORSAN: Anybody passing through Toronto can drop in and see my Japanese walnuts with 24 to the cluster and not a sign of bunch disease.

DR. MacDANIELS: Yes, you may not have the bunch disease near you. We hope you haven't.

The next paper is by J. A. Adams, who is from the Experiment Station here at Poughkeepsie. This experiment station is a branch of the Geneva Agricultural Experiment Station. I believe that's right, isn't it, Mr. Adams?

MR. ADAMS: That's right, and it is concerned primarily with the fruits down here in this region.

DR. MacDANIELS: His subject is "Some Observations on the Japanese Beetle on Nut Trees." Let me say Mr. Adams would like to show some slides, but it didn't seem feasible to close this window down.



The Japanese Beetle and Nut Growing

J. A. ADAMS

Associate Professor of Entomology, New York State Agricultural Experiment Station, Geneva and Poughkeepsie, New York

It is a pleasure to attend this meeting of the Northern Nut Growers. Association and to take part in your program. I shall discuss the Japanese beetle as it seems to affect nut culture, and outline our methods of control.

The Japanese beetle evidently came into this country in the soil about some roots of plants imported to a nursery near Philadelphia nearly 40 years ago. Since 1916, its distribution, habits, and control have been closely studied by the federal Japanese Beetle Laboratory at Moorestown, New Jersey. The insect has become generally distributed in the coastal area, as far north as Massachusetts, as far south as Virginia, and as far west as West Virginia. Beyond these limits, it has established local colonies in New Hampshire, Vermont, Western New York, Ohio, Michigan, and North Carolina. In most of the states affected there is an investigator who, like myself, carries on local studies, more or less in cooperation with the federal laboratory. In New York we now have, in addition to the generally infested areas on Long Island and in the Hudson Valley, about 50 isolated infestations in the central and western parts of the state.

Might I have a showing of hands by those who have Japanese beetle already? (Showing of hands.) There is quite a sprinkling of you who have them. Many of you do not have them yet, but, since the insect is spreading every year, you can expect them some day, especially if you live in the Northeast. It is expected that this pest will not thrive in the drier central States, but it might become established in the Pacific States some day, unless prevented.

You can see these beetles anywhere in and around Poughkeepsie. From Poughkeepsie I have watched them spread in the past few years to Pleasant Valley and eastward. This morning as I parked my vehicle by this building I picked these specimens from the smartweed, Polygonum persicaria. (Passing of specimens.) These insects also feed on the flowers and foliage of purple loosestrife, Lythrum salicifolia, so plentiful and showy in our swampy fields. The most conspicuous damage is done to the foliage of wild grape vines. You will observe this when you visit Mr. Stephen Bernath's nut plantation. You will note the conspicuous defoliation of the vines on the fence rows. Willow is another host heavily attacked. I believe you have the beetles at your plantation at Wassaic, Mr. Smith?

MR. GILBERT SMITH: Plenty of them.

DR. ADAMS: You will also observe the damage at Mr. Smith's place. You will see that it is strictly a matter of skeletonization of the leaves.

A MEMBER: They eat the fruit, too.

DR. MacDANIELS: You have damage on fruit.

A MEMBER: They eat berries.

DR. ADAMS: Yes, but on nut plants the damage above ground is confined to leaf skeletonization. It varies widely, depending on the kind of nut plant. Before visiting Mr. Bernath's planting, I sought out the botanical names of the commoner nut plants in Dr. MacDaniels' Cornell Extension Bulletin No. 701, on "Nut Growing." Of the Juglans species, the black walnut, J. nigra, is sometimes heavily attacked. There are large black walnut trees near one of our peach orchards. I have seen hordes of beetles gather in these trees in July and August, skeletonizing the leaves until the defoliation reached 40% or more. Late in August the beetles seemed to leave the walnut foliage and descend upon the ripening peaches. The heart nut, J. sieboldiana var. cordiformis, was moderately fed upon at Mr. Bernath's nursery. The butternut, J. cinerea, is only lightly attacked, as a rule.

The hickories and pecans are not attacked to any appreciable extent, but at least some of the chestnuts are very attractive to this pest. I have seen shoots of Castanea dentata with their foliage reduced to lace. Some of the small Chinese chestnuts, C. mollissima, at Mr. Bernath's place, were about one-fourth defoliated in mid-August.

The hazels seem to be attractive to these beetles. When the Japanese beetle spreads to Prof. Slate's plantings of Corylus at Geneva, we may get more information on varietal preferences. I find that exposed foliage of C. americana, the common wild hazel here, is sometimes fairly heavily fed upon. I am holding up to the window a portion of a hazel bush; you can see that the leaves along one side are skeletonized. It is probable that the species, hybrids, and varieties of Corylus will show the same marked variation in susceptibility that is shown in so many other genera of plants.

Among the oaks, the pin oak, Quercus Palustris, and the English oak, Q. robur, are commonly one-third defoliated while the common white and red oaks are almost immune. Among the maples—to go farther afield from nuts—the Norway, Acer platanoides, and the Japanese, A. palmatum, are often severely injured, where the sugar maple, A. saccharum, is only lightly injured and the delicate-leaved red maple and silver maple, A. rubrum and A. saccharinum, remain untouched.

Since the Japanese beetle is here to stay, and to spread, these differences are worth considering where plant materials are being selected for new ornamental plantings. In our bulletin on Japanese beetle (Cornell Extension Bulletin 770) we have to warn the reader that planting chestnuts may bring him trouble with the Japanese beetle, trouble which he would not have with flowering dogwood, Cornus florida, or the common lilacs, Syringa vulgaris, which are immune to this pest.

It may be, however, that some of the chestnuts carry immunity factors. In the U. S. Department of Agriculture Circular No. 547, published in 1940, "Feeding Habits of the Japanese Beetle," by I. M. Hawley and F. W. Metzger, Castanea crenata, the Japanese chestnut, is listed with beech and chestnut oak as "generally lightly injured." I understand you consider the nut of this species poor, but if resistance factors are in the genus, there can be hope of finding or developing a chestnut resistant to Japanese beetle.

We might be able to do with chestnuts what has been done with poplars. The common poplars range from the Lombardy, Populus nigra italica, which is heavily damaged by the beetle, to the white, P. alba, which is immune. The forest geneticist, E. J. Schreiner, has written an article, "Poplars can be bred to order," which appears on pages 153 to 157 in "Trees," the Yearbook of Agriculture for 1949, published by the U. S. Department of Agriculture. Schreiner provides an interesting diagram of random planting of 102 poplar hybrids, in plots of 50 trees each, representing 30 parentages. He writes, "Japanese beetle infestation was heavy in 1947; as late as September 9 beetles were as numerous as 10 to 12 per leaf on the most susceptible plants. Although the insects were feeding everywhere on the sparsely scattered weeds growing under the hybrids, beetle feeding was found on only nine hybrids, representing four parentages. Three of these parentages include hybrids that were entirely free of beetle feeding during the entire infestation." Among five hybrids of P. charkowiensis and P. caudina, three were highly susceptible, one moderately susceptible and one was non-susceptible.

Japanese beetles, when infesting rows of plants of the same variety, usually occur unevenly on the individual plants. Some of the factors have to do with the vigor or color of the tree. In my observation on peach, I have repeatedly seen a sickly, yellow and half-wilted tree with thousands of beetles in it, while other similar but healthy trees in the same row averaged only a few hundred beetles. You can make one branch of a tree more attractive to the insects than the rest of the branches by partly girdling it or permitting borers or cankers to damage the base of the branch. This observation suggests that the increased sugar content raises the attractiveness of the leaf. It coincides with what is already known that extracts of plants preferred by the Japanese beetle have, in general, a higher sugar content, or more of a fruit-like odor than those not attacked. (Metzger et al, Jour. Agric. Research, 49 (11): 1001-1008. 1934. Washington, D. C.)

There are other observations you can easily make yourselves. The Japanese beetle avoids shade, except on the hottest days, and its feeding in dense trees shows up most in the tops; its feeding on uniform plantings tends to show up most in the edge rows. Nursery-size trees are more extensively defoliated than larger ones. At this point we must consider that the insect usually has to fly into a planting from the outside, for it breeds chiefly in lawns and meadows. If the foliage mass of the nut planting is small and the grass areas nearby are large, the beetles are likely to do heavier damage than where the planting is very large and grass areas negligible. A small planting in a suburban area, beside a large golf course, cemetery or dairy farm, is going to be more heavily attacked than a large one set in a clearing in the woods.

Control of the adult: The safest, most direct measure is to pick or knock the beetles off the plants, preferably in the early morning, when they are cool. They may be dropped in a pail with a little kerosene in it. Some plants can be shielded with thin nets which can be placed on them by day. We do not recommend Japanese beetle traps. These yellow traps, which are baited with geranoil and other essential oils, can draw beetles in from a considerable distance but we have found that, possibly because many beetles miss the trap, the population of beetles remains high near the trap, in spite of heavy daily catches. Although the use of one trap to the acre on a block 10 miles square would probably get results, the use of a few traps on a small nut planting is likely to be disappointing.

A MEMBER: Will birds or any kind of poultry eat them?

DR. ADAMS: Yes, poultry will eat them, as far as they can reach. Certain birds, of course, will feed on them to some extent, but birds, in summer, seem to have plenty of other things to eat, and they certainly leave plenty of beetles in plain sight uneaten. We can see that the birds are a fairly constant helpful factor, but are not to be relied upon to prevent injury occurring in a beetle outbreak.

Rotenone, which, I believe, is one of your main insecticides in nut culture, is fairly effective on Japanese beetles. It kills the beetles hit with the spray and gives protection for several days thereafter. If you apply it often enough, rotenone can take care of the plants so that they don't become disfigured by the beetles. Using cube powder, you may apply five ounces of 4% rotenone in 10 gallons of water. Of course, in many cases there is no objection to using DDT wetable powder or dusts, unless you are afraid of a mite problem arising after DDT is used. If DDT can be sprayed on the plants, it needs to be applied only about three times during a summer, or sometimes only twice. For plants that are growing very fast, the new growth, of course, has to be kept treated. You may prefer to spray once heavily over all the plants in July and then, after that, keep the beetles off by spraying or dusting the new growth, during August. For more directions see U.S.D.A. Farmers Bulletin No. 2004.

Now, there are new chemicals that will kill Japanese beetles very quickly. Parathion will kill them, but its toxicity necessitates great care in handling and, on peaches, we find it protects the plants for only a few days. Chlordane, which has a very important use in connection with these insects in the grub stage, is not recommended above ground; it is too brief in its action. Methoxychlor may be used instead of DDT. It is less effective, but much less poisonous, and should be applied more frequently.

Now, the other aspect of control is to try to reduce beetle production over the whole area so that you don't have so many beetles flying in to the plants during the summer and you don't have to spray so frequently, if at all. This is the phase to which I wish to give particular attention, after we consider the life history.

Life history: The Japanese beetles in the adult stage are in evidence here from late June to late September, or, roughly, for the summer season. The adults lay their eggs in the soil, mostly in lawns, mowed grassy fields and pastures. The adults die but the eggs give rise to tiny, bluish-gray larvae which feed chiefly on grass roots. The larvae grow through the fall and spring, and, if more numerous than about 40 to the square foot in September, or about 25 in April and May, can cause severe lawn damage.

MR. CORSAN: That's the stage when the pheasants and starlings eat them.

DR. ADAMS: Yes, in the grub stage.

MR. CORSAN: I see thousands of starlings gorging themselves.

DR. ADAMS: Yes, scratching birds, crows and skunks can take them out; the starlings make a hole the size of a pencil point to do so. In our survey areas grub populations sometimes seem to drop rapidly in May, when the birds are feeding their nestlings. In June, the surviving larvae mostly change into pupae, and by July they are appearing as beetles. From the lawns and grassy fields they readily fly to weeds, shrubs, grapevines and trees. They fly at least a few hundred yards, if need be, to find their host plants. Well kept, sunny, lawns with good, moist soil, which carry 40 grubs to the square foot in the fall may still have plenty at transformation time in early summer. A lawn of 5,000 square feet could thus produce 100,000 beetles. Yards, roadways and pastures commonly produce as many as six beetles to the square foot, which means a quarter million to the acre.

Chemical control in the grub stage: In New York we suggest that on a home property the more valuable sections of permanent lawn be grub-proofed with chemicals as soon as there are 5 to 10 grubs to the square foot. This grub-proofing has two effects: (a) it stops beetle production from that lawn, and (b) it prevents the lawn grass being damaged by the grubs of this and other annual grub species and by the birds and animals, including moles, which damage grubby turf. For grub-proofing I prefer to use chlordane. It may be applied in a spray, at 8 ounces of 50% wettable powder to 1,000 square feet, or it may be purchased in the more bulky 5% form and applied dry with a two-wheeled lawn fertilizer spreader. For each 1,000 square feet I take 5 pounds of 5% chlordane and, since it tends to clog the spreader, I mix it in a cardboard drum with 5 pounds of a dry, granular material such as the activated-sludge fertilizer known as "Milorganite." The ten pounds of mixture is then spread on the 1,000 square feet, half east and west, half north and south.

If applied in the fall or early spring there will be no beetles coming out in July and no grubs for several years. DDT at 6 pounds of 10% DDT to 1,000 square feet will give an even longer grub-proofing effect. Our plots so treated in 1944 are still grub-free. The possible trouble with DDT is that it is too nearly permanent, and if you should plow up a piece of lawn treated with it and try to raise tomatoes or strawberries, you might find the soil too toxic.

Biological control in the grub stage: The chemical grub-proofing of the sunny parts of the front or main lawn on a property is desirable for the reasons stated, but it does not usually stop more than a fifth of the beetle production around the property, because there are usually plenty of neighbors' lawns, pastures, public grounds, and other beetle-producing turf areas nearby. How are you to reduce the beetle crop on these places, mostly on ground you don't control? Here is where biological control comes in, something which I feel will appeal to you in this group. The parasitic insects known as spring Tiphia, imported from the Orient and well established on hundreds of estates, golf courses, and cemeteries around Philadelphia and New York, may be introduced in your vicinity when grubs reach about 5 to the square foot. The parasites, which are like flying ants, appear above ground in spring and feed on honey-dew. The female burrows in the soil and attaches her eggs singly to Japanese beetle grubs. A maggot hatches and consumes the grub. I have charge of the distribution of these parasites in New York. I like to liberate at least one colony in each village or town division. Some of you may help me plan the liberation for your vicinity, possibly on a cemetery near your place. The colonies enlarge to about a square mile in 10 years, and may cut beetle production by 50%.

Another biological agent which can be added to grub-carrying turf is the bacterium causing Japanese beetle grubs to turn milky white and die. A powder is made from diseased grubs and talc and this milky disease spore inoculum is applied with a teaspoon in dots or spots over the turf. The important point is that the spore powder must be used on a plot where there are grubs to get the disease, and not on chemically grub-proofed soil. Milky disease spore powder is sold under three brand names, "Japidemic," "Japonex" and "Sawco-Japy." One-half pound, suitably applied, will cost you about $2.50 and be an act of good citizenship, for the disease slowly spreads to any grubby soil in surrounding properties. I can supply addresses of the producers and detailed reprints of my studies.

Discussion

MR. McDANIEL: Does this disease affect any other beetles we have in America, besides the Japanese?

MR. ADAMS: Yes, one other species; it causes some sickness in the grubs of the turf pest known as the Oriental beetle.

MR. McDANIEL: How about the green June beetle?

DR. ADAMS: No, unfortunately, it doesn't work on that beetle, which is a pest on Long Island and in the South.

A MEMBER: How much area would a (1/2-pound) can like that treat?

DR. ADAMS: It depends. You can apply a half-pound to a quarter acre, or any smaller space you want to put it on. If you want to put spots down closer together, say every three feet, it will treat about 1,000 square feet. It suggests on the label that you do. But if you treat a plot on a large field, I'd recommend you put it out at about a teaspoonful every ten feet. In other words, I wouldn't put less than a half-pound on the plot set aside for it on my place. The application is just a starter to introduce the disease in the area, and it doesn't matter too much whether you spot it at 10-foot intervals on a pasture or put it at fairly close intervals on an area about the size of this room. The point is that it mustn't be broadcast, because that spreads the spores too thin. Grubs don't get the disease if they eat only a few spores. We assume that where you put the spots down on the ground the grubs under those spots will get the disease and wander off and die. When a grub dies, it multiplies the number of spores up to many millions. That portion of soil becomes infective, and more grubs going through the infective portions carry the disease to intervening areas until the whole piece of turf is unhealthful to these grubs. Droppings of birds feeding on sick grubs spread the disease.

MR. FRYE: One application is all that's needed?

DR. ADAMS: One application is all that's needed. Control is slight at first, but increases with the passage of the years.

MR. CORSAN: Quail feed on them. Why can't we have quail around the farms instead of shooting them?

DR. ADAMS: I would be for that, but we have to find other methods for a lot of people. Besides, we need something that will intercept some of the grubs in the fall, before they get big. After all, by the time the quail are interested in them, they have already done some damage in the ground. In the ground the grubs can do two kinds of damage. They can make turf loose so it can be rolled back like a rug. Second, if you should plow up a piece of sod that has many grubs in it and try to plant row crops or nursery stock, they may eat the roots off the planting in the spring.

DR. McKAY: I'd like to ask what effect low temperature has on them and how far north you think will be their limit?

DR. ADAMS: The soil temperature at which the grubs begin to die in hibernation is 15 degrees, and I have never seen the soil temperature that low here under turf. (I operate a soil thermograph on my lawn.)

A MEMBER: How far down do they go?

DR. ADAMS: They hibernate at 4 to 8 inches in the ground. It's rare to have it drop below 27 degrees at these depths.

MR. STERLING SMITH: What do you mean, Fahrenheit?

DR. ADAMS: That is Fahrenheit.

A MEMBER: That's frozen solid. That's at 32 degrees.

DR. ADAMS: The deeper soil will drop only a few degrees below freezing. The soil here usually remains no lower than 32 degrees, except within an inch or two of the top.

A MEMBER: Do you think soil temperature is going to be a limiting factor?

DR. ADAMS: I think the limiting factor northward is the coolness of the summers. In Northern Japan their life history gets altered because of the shortness of the summer, and I think in the Adirondack area they won't be serious for that reason.

MR. WEBER: Will this spore powder kill other kinds of grubs that are in the sod?

DR. ADAMS: Not to any practical extent. It does not control the grubs of the "June bugs," or brown June beetles, or what are called "white grubs."

MR. LOWERRE: Would the DDT kill the parasitic wasps?

DR. ADAMS: Turf treated with chlordane or DDT is grub-proofed and is not of any use to the flying parasites as a place to lay eggs, or for bacteria to multiply. So we don't want to put chemicals on top of biological control plots. For instance, on an average home property I would treat the front lawn, the more valuable piece, with chemicals so that it would be 100% grub-proofed to protect the turf and to take that much turf out of beetle production. Then on the back lawns or grassy fields adjoining, I would apply at least a half-pound of this milky disease material, and in that way provide a complete treatment; the parasites can be added on some large public turf area nearby. And don't think you are going to stamp the Japanese beetle out just by spraying all the adult beetles you see each summer on the cultivated plants, because there are lots more on the shade trees, weeds and vines.

Previous Part     1  2  3  4  5  6     Next Part
Home - Random Browse