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Wisconsin State Cranberry Growers Association / Wisconsin State Cranberry Growers' Association. Forty-seventh annual meeting, Wisconsin Rapids, Wisconsin, December 14, 1933. Forty-seventh summer convention, Wisconsin Rapids, Wisconsin, August 8, 1933

Chambers, E. L.
Why insect control problems are on the increase in Wisconsin,   pp. 26-33 PDF (2.2 MB)

Page 32

lustrate my point I wish to explain that when rice-growing was first
undertaken in California, the results were very erratic and, generall.
speaking, the growing of this crop was proving unsuccessful. Thc
Government sent one scientist after another to carry on the research
work in hopes that the missing link could be discovered. Finally
they decided to start from the scratch and bring in someone who knew
nothing about growing rice but who was a trained scientist skilled in
the art of getting at the bottom of things and recording the facts.
Consequently, they selected a man who had never seen rice grown to
this purpose. In his scientific way he turned out elaborate experi-
ments and as soon as his co-workers were trained to receive their in-
structions, he met with opposition. They advised him that the prob-
lem of the amount of water that should be used on the crop had al-
ready been thoroughly worked out and that nothing further need be
done on that particular phase of the matter. This trained scientist,
however, replied that maybe they knew but he did not. Carrying out
his original plan, he discovered that where three, four or five inches
of water were used on the rice field a very poor crop was secured, as
well as in plots where eight inches were used, but that there was one
point where the crop was unusually satisfactory, which I believe was
when the water was applied at a depth of approximately seven inches.
Using this depth as a basis for future plantings, their troubles dis-
appeared and they soon learned that the whole trouble lay in the fact
that they were not using the proper amount of water. Today th.
can grow rice in California even better than they can in China.
We have recently found that strawberry growers who have been
growing this crop for years have not known how to handle their crop
to best advantage. In our nursery inspection work we were find
that there was serious winter loss despite the fact that the growers
were mulching their strawberries. The result was that there was
very few salable plants in the spring and a very small crop of berries
harvested. At first the nurserymen felt that it was a fungous dis-
ease and asked us to assist them in solving the problem of its con-
trol. In our observations we found no evidence of a primary fungouq
disease and consequently arranged to have some experimental plots
carried on by Professor Roherst of the University of Wisconsin on
the question of mulching. The chart, which we have on the wall, in-
dicates the date of covering, the temperature and the yield. From
this investigation it was learned that the usual practice of wailir
until the ground was frozen sufficiently to permit driving on the bed,
was too late for the proper protection of the plants. You will note
that the plants covered the last of October yielded 108 crates to the
acre, while those that were covered on the tenth of November yielded
106 crates. Again you will notice that when the mulch was placed
on the plants the fifteenth of November the yield was 138 crates and
where it was not put on until the last of November the yield dropped
to 79. Those covered on the fifth of December yielded only 51 crates
per acre. The result in this experiment where no covering was use '
you will notice, was only 33 crates to the acre. From these figures it
is evident that covering the plants too soon reduces the crop by pr"-
venting proper plant growth and that covering too late does not give
ample winter protection during the first early cold spells when appar-
ently the most danger results. The point that I wish to make is that
some of you cranberry growers have been growing cranberries a lo-v
time and since some of you have been having difficulty in solving win-
ter injury problems, it occurred to me that it might be possible that
you did not have sufficient information on your winter covering to
permit you to handle your crop to best advantage. We have, there-
fore, prepared this chart showing that the temperature last winter
here in Wisconsin Rapids fell to zero on the fifteenth of November and

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