Stephentown, NY — Growing strawberries in substrate (soilless media) can help prevent soil-borne diseases, increase yields, improve quality and reduce the costs associated with pesticides, fertilizer and water. To aid professional berry growers in learning about this valuable subject, the New York State Berry Growers Association (NYSBGA) has collaborated with Cornell Cooperative Extension to create the first In-Depth Strawberry Substrate Workshop at Moakley House in Ithaca on February 11 to 13. Space is limited to 35 participants. The cost is $195 for current NYSBGA members and $245 nonmembers, and registration can be completed online.
This three-day workshop will cover a wide range of topics, including:
- Strawberry-substrate culture and production systems
- Greenhouse vs. high-tunnel environmental control
- Cultivar selection
- Strawberry response to temperature, water, light, CO2
- Substrates and fertilizers
- Plant management
- Harvest and post-harvest
- Strategies for improving fruit quality
Speakers at the In-Depth Strawberry Substrate Workshop will include experts from Delphy, a worldwide leader in food and flower production based in the Netherlands, Cornell University, Cornell Cooperative Extension, and others. Read more details about the event.
“New York is at a pivotal point where our farmers have two critical components necessary for growing: land and water," said Elizabeth Madison, chair of the NYSBGA. "However, we have a short growing season. In the past few years, we have seen large international companies move into the upstate region, growing high-value crops completely under cover in a controlled environment, which allows for ... extending [the] growing [season]. The New York State Berry Growers Association jumped at the opportunity to work with the world-class experts at Delphy, who are successfully growing strawberries on substrate, and agricultural experts at Cornell. Our goal is to jump-start the industry and give independent growers the competitive edge they need to be profitable.”
Breakfast, lunch, and printed handouts are included in the registration fee. Accommodations are available at the Best Western University Inn in Ithaca; ask for a room for the New York State Berry Growers Association workshop. The Best Western provides a free hot breakfast and shuttle to the workshop.