2011 Agricultural Research and
Teaching at the UVM Horticulture Research Center
University of Vermont Horticulture Research Center (UVM Hort
Farm) is a 99-acre facility supported by the College of
Agriculture and Life Sciences and Vermont Agriculture Experiment
Station which serves as a field laboratory for numerous applied
agriculture research projects. Infrastructure at
the Hort Farm includes
field plots with irrigation access, a fleet of tractors,
tillage, and planting equipment, produce coolers and drying
ovens, field laboratory and classroom space.
2011, the following supported projects are active on the farm:
Apple Research and Outreach.
Hort Farm has supported applied apple research and outreach
since it was purchased by the University in 1952. Current
projects include 4.6 acres of observation and demonstration
Integrated Pest Management (IPM) orchards that provide ecology
data for publication in industry newsletters; assessment of
high-density tall spindle training systems; and evaluation of
rootstocks and varieties.
addition, the Organic Apple Research and Demonstration
(OrganicA) project, comprised of 2.6 acres in four orchards, is
a long-term project that assesses the horticultural and economic
feasibility of adoption of organic apple production in the
Wine and Table Grape Research
research is conducted in the 0.4 acre research vineyard
associated with the national coordinated NE-1020 Multi-state
Evaluation of Winegrape Cultivars and Clones trial. This
vineyard also supports a U.S. EPA Pesticide Environmental
Stewardship Program Project grant which helps grape grower
develop best pest management practices in their vineyards.
Common Ground Student Run Educational Farm
by the UVM Student Government Association, this club manages a
three-acre vegetable farm and community supported agriculture
(CSA) program whose mission is to provide the UVM community with
fresh, local, organic produce through education and hands on
experiences for students and the community.
Farmer Apprentice Program
five-month, full-time certificate program run through UVM
Continuing Education began in 2011, with a one-acre plot at the
HRC supporting its vegetable CSA farm. The goal of the program
is to create small farm business owners, teaching the concepts
and practices of diversified agriculture production. This
program will provide an intense, supportive experience where
participates leave with a deeper understanding of agriculture
management and small –scale farm business within the local
community, and the entrepreneurial skills to start their own
operation. Participants will be prepared to enter the world of
small, organic, sustainable farming as farmers, activists,
educators, and policy makers impacting our food system in a
Small Grain, Biofuels, and Agronomy Projects
Sid Bosworth uses about five acres of the farm for several
research projects involving agronomic crops including spring
wheat disease management, switchgrass production for biofuels,
and other turf and forage plant assessment. Sid also uses the
farm for his courses in Weed Ecology, Turf Management, and
Branch Out Burlington Community Tree Nursery
Skinner manages this plot in conjunction with arborists from the
city of Burlington as a nursery to provide street trees to the
city and surrounding community.
National Elm Tree Evaluation
research project is cooperative between 15 different
sites/regions of the United States with the University of
Vermont representing the New England region. The study is
evaluating 19 Dutch elm disease resistant elm species/hybrids
for: resistance to other diseases and insects, geographic
adaptation, meteorological tolerance, growth rate, form and
ornamental features, over a 10 year period. A poster,
summarizing the results to date, was presented at the Vermont
Division of Forestry's Urban and Community Forestry workshop,
"Return of the American Elm to the Community Forest" held at
Marsh-Billings-Rockefeller National Historic Park, Woodstock, VT
on September 24, 2010.
American Chestnut Germplasm Conservation Orchard
project is a collaboration between the American Chestnut
Foundation and UVM.
Students in PSS 138 Commercial Plant Propagation learn grafting
techniques using American Chestnuts and then the plants are
planted at the Hort. Farm for long-term germplasm evaluation.
The Hort Farm also hosts Apple Sales on Fridays in the fall.
Proceeds from fruit sales are the primary source of operational
funding for the facility.