Research station to hold field day

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, October 9, 2002

PORT SULPHUR – The LSU AgCenter’s Citrus Research Station has scheduled a field day Oct. 23 to report on the latest with several projects ongoing at the station.

Highlights of this year’s field day, which will begin at 1:30 p.m. at the station in Port Sulphur, include the introduction of new Satsuma varieties, the latest citrus research and vegetable research and a new termite research plot at the station, according to Dr. Pam Hodson, regional director for the LSU AgCenter’s Southeast Region.

The field day also will mark the official introduction of Dr. Wayne Bourgeois as the new resident coordinator at the facility, according to Hodson, who said Bourgeois has posted many years of research and educational work in the area.

“The new termite research we are conducting is one-of-a-kind in the continental United States,” Hodson said, explaining the only other area where such work is being conducted is in Hawaii. “What we’re doing is trying to determine what types of wood products work best in termite-infested areas.”

As part of the field day, LSU AgCenter professor and urban entomologist Dr. Gregg Henderson – a noted authority on Formosan subterranean termites and lead researcher on this project – will provide an overview of the termite research that’s taking place at the research station.

In addition, Bourgeois will discuss the two newly released Satsuma varieties that were developed through research at the station, as well as field testing of salt-tolerant citrus rootstock and subsurface drainage for relief of saltwater intrusion. Bourgeois also will provide an overall update on citrus research.

The two new Satsuma varieties, LA Early and LA St. Ann, are larger, earlier-producing varieties and have better quality than the older Early Armstrong, according to Bourgeois, who also said the new varieties produce medium-to-large fruit and significantly higher yields per tree than the Early Armstrong variety commonly grown in the area. In other reports during the field day, Dr. Seth Johnson, professor of entomology with the LSU AgCenter, will discuss rust mites, thrips, leaf-footed bugs, citrus leafminers and brown citrus aphids. AgCenter plant pathologist Dr. Ken Whitam will provide information on citrus diseases and control, and AgCenter entomologist Dr. Boris Castro will discuss the latest citrus insect control measures.

As in past years, greenhouse tomato production also will be discussed. And, along with tomatoes, there will be discussion of blueberry regional germplasm tests and fig evaluations.

The station is located on Louisiana Highway 23 and the event will begin with registration at 1:30 p.m.