REQUEST FOR INFORMATION FOR SPECIFIC SITUATION

WMILLER at PRISM.CLEMSON.EDU WMILLER at PRISM.CLEMSON.EDU
Wed Dec 16 11:33:00 EST 1992


I am a blueberry grower located in Pickens County South Carolina 
(western corner).  I am interested in switching to to 
agroforestry system for reduction in frost risk along with 
several other reasons.  The current system is grassed middles on 
a highly erodible site.  It is in it's 10 leaf.   

There is 5 acres of blueberries, we are adding 1.5 acres of 
blackberries over the next 2 years.  Will also add raspberries in 
the future.  We are a pick-your-own with limited chain stores 
sales for a secondary market.  We are a small family business.  
We are "sundowners".   The soils have a residual pH of about 5.2 
unlimed; range from poor to excessive internal drainage within a 
30 meters; have good surface drainage.  PHYTOPHTHORA CINNAMONI is 
present.  Rainfall about 1100 mm a year.  Low temp. about 5-10 f 
about once or twice a year.  Additioal information available on 
request. 

The gist of our thinking so far is frost is a significant risk 
factor.  Bushes protected form the north sky by trees 
consistently produce provided they have at 60% sunlight and root 
competition is not a factor.  Thoughts - consultation with local 
ag meteorologist suggests east west rows at about 100 to 120 ft 
intervals.  Some Soil Conservation Service information suggest 
50% porosity to wind and similar spacing and direction.  Clemson 
University Extension forestry suggest loblolly pine.  It is 
tolerant of pore drainage and and does not form epicormic shoots, 
therefore would limbing up to maintain air drainage under canopy 
and side limbing to keep it narrow.  Needles could be thrown to 
row middles as mulch.   

To be profitable, because of competition losses, there needs to 
be interim product(s) as well as terminal product and cyclic 
procedure. How about naval stores ie loblollyxlongleaf hybrids?  
How about nut pines (Korean?)?  Should they be grafted? Whitepine 
rootstock?  What about nursery sources of the above.  How about 
the blackberry psyllid.  Pines seems to make sense as they have a 
canopy during critical spring frosts but we have noted that 
hardwoods are effective also.  Have thought about chestnuts but 
wonder if they have the right tree shape(?) would not be to 
competitive in terms of root system(?) and also have problems 
with epicormic shoots. How about compatibility(ie alleopathy)?  
Loblolly is reported associate okay/well with ericaceous plants. 

I/we would love to here ideas and observations with supporting 
literature and references that will bear up under scientific 
scrutiny.  We are trying to make our production system 
sustainable economically, environmentally and socially.  We do 
use plant pharmaceuticals and are very conscious of their 
characteristics with regards to environment and safety to all. 

This maybe outside the intent of this reflector.  If so jsut give 
it the old DEL. 

Many thanks for your input.

2
Walker Miller, Wmiller at Clust1.clemson.edu 
 



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