OFRF acknowledges the facility of tales to have an effect on change. We’ve got launched into a venture to gather and share the tales of researchers, particularly these whose work is embedded throughout the natural group. On this effort, we’re completely happy to introduce this primary Natural Researcher Highlight. Our Researcher Highlight Collection showcases present analysis being accomplished on a few of the hardest challenges confronted by natural producers throughout the nation. By means of a sequence of interviews, OFRF is sharing updates and outcomes from thrilling collaborative analysis tasks presently being funded by the Natural Agriculture Analysis and Extension Initiative (OREI) and the Natural Transitions Program (ORG).
Natural farmers constantly report that pests are one of the crucial difficult features of natural manufacturing, particularly within the south. For farmers producing small fruits like blueberries, blackberries, raspberries, and stone fruits like peaches or cherries, the Noticed Wing Drosophila (SWD), an invasive fly of Asian origin, has been inflicting injury to crops since its first documented presence in the US, in 2008.
Dr. Ash Sial, College of Georgia blueberry entomologist, has heard and seen this injury first-hand working with farmers within the area. To reply to this rising pest and to offer solutions to the best way to management the pest organically, Dr. Sial leads the “SWD Natural Administration” grant, collaborating with researchers throughout the nation and with farmers within the south.
This OREI-funded analysis focuses on understanding the life-cycle of this pest, and builds a groundwork of understanding of how the fly is (or shouldn’t be) surviving on farms. Working collaboratively with natural farmers within the area, Dr. Sial’s analysis is figuring out how sure cultural and bodily controls, like pruning methods and mulches, can successfully management this newly-introduced pest. Watch OFRF’s interview with Dr. Sial from early 2023: