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Mike Wallis, executive director of the BC Cranberry Association, says there is no comparison in planting a commercial bog to planting a research bog. ‘Everything at the research farm must be done in detail and every move recorded. While this makes it a very time consuming task, the long term benefits make it all worthwhile.â€? Overall the research farm has five bogs. Each bog is about two-and-a-half acres in size and is serviced by an underground water distribution system. At present water is being pumping from a well in Delta through an irrigation canal to the farm, but that will change once electrical power is installed and a pumping station and storage pond are built on the farm. Current experimental plantings include some varieties from Rutgers University in New Jersey, which were planted last June in small test plots. In another bog four different local varieties are planted in much larger, quarter-acre plots. It takes about three years before a test plant produces a cranberry. There are plans to hold field days at the farm over the next year or two, where growers can see what progress the different types of cranberry varieties are making in the Lower Mainland climate and growing conditions, what their yield potential is, and whether any new diseases have emerged. The cranberry crop in B.C. is valued at over $23M with 2,500 acres planted. About half of that is monitored and controlled by IPM (Integrated Pest Management) consultants. While there are several different diseases to be found in North American crops, only viscid rot and phtyophthora are of any concern in B.C. at this time. Control measures are in place for both. The research farm will also do fertility work, pesticide research, pesticide screening and nutrient management planning on the different varieties. Growing conditions were excellent for B.C. cranberries this year and estimates suggest the 2013 harvest could be as large as 95 million pounds, the largest ever. Now, with a dedicated cranberry research farm, the future for the industry looks even more promising. â–

40 Year End 2013

Orchard and Vine Magazine Year End 2013  

Year-in-Review: what happened in grapes, wine, apples, cherries, berries and more! Land, Labour and Liquor Laws. Pacific Agriculture Show S...

Orchard and Vine Magazine Year End 2013  

Year-in-Review: what happened in grapes, wine, apples, cherries, berries and more! Land, Labour and Liquor Laws. Pacific Agriculture Show S...

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