Attendees will learn about a host of experiment station-funded research projects at the 360-acre research farm, including those on squash and pumpkin breeding, melon grafting, forage crops, oyster farming, and invasive plants. A reception will follow to celebrate UNH’s sesquicentennial and the history of agricultural research conducted at the university since shortly after it was founded in 1866.
Kingman Farm is a 360-acre research farm on Route 155 in Madbury and a facility of the NH Agricultural Experiment Station.
“Agricultural research tailored to New Hampshire needs and growing conditions is a cornerstone of the University of New Hampshire—our state’s land-grant university. The twilight meeting at the Kingman Research Farm will demonstrate how today’s faculty and staff are taking that tradition in new directions,” said Lorraine Merrill, commissioner of the New Hampshire Department of Agriculture, Markets and Food.
“Over the years the NH Agricultural Experiment Station has hosted ground-breaking research in dairy cattle nutrition, composting methods, season-extending, high-tunnel growing systems, and more. From developing new vegetable varieties and growing techniques adapted to northern New England, to research into native pollinators and invasive plant species, NH Agricultural Experiment Station researchers continue to conduct unbiased research geared to the needs of the people and environment of our region,” Merrill said.
Janel Martin, graduate student of plant biology, will discuss grafting melons to squash hybrids to overcome disease pressure, extend the growing season both by earlier planting dates and extended harvest, and determine proper irrigation regimen for efficient water use.
The twilight meeting and research field day, which will be held from 4 to 6 p.m., is sponsored by the NH Agricultural Experiment Station at the UNH College of Life Sciences and Agriculture and Celebrate 150 Series. It is free and open to the public. Guests should expect to walk about a mile during the tour. Light refreshments will be served after the farm tour.
During the tour attendees will hear from:
- Brent Loy, emeritus professor of plant biology and genetics. Loy will discuss melon breeding, and breeding and genetic research with the three major classes of fresh market squash: acorn, butternut, and buttercup/kabocha.
- Rich Smith, associate professor of agroecology. Smith will discuss his research on alternative forage crops and intercropping.
- Andrew Ouimette, research scientist at the Earth Systems Research Center and a doctoral student in the Natural Resources and Earth Systems Science. Ouimette will discuss his research that investigates greenhouse gases, radiation, and energy fluxes across four different land cover types.
- Janel Martin, graduate student of plant biology. Martin will discuss grafting melons to squash hybrids to overcome disease pressure, extend the growing season both by earlier planting dates and extended harvest, and determine proper irrigation regimen for efficient water use.
- Andrew Ogden, doctoral student in sustainable agriculture. Ogden will discuss his research that investigates grafting in squash and pumpkins to promote flowering and increase understanding of late-season flowering.
- Tom Lee, associate professor of forest ecology. Lee will discuss his research on methods to control the highly invasive glossy buckthorn plant that competes with some of the state’s most valuable trees.
- Ray Grizzle, professor of zoology. Grizzle will discuss his oyster farming research aimed at increasing production of New Hampshire’s rapidly growing oyster aquaculture industry and restoring wild oyster populations that are important to the ecology of Great Bay.
- Todd Guerdat, assistant professor of agricultural engineering. Guerdat will discuss his new integrated aquaculture farming system project to be built at Kingman Farm.
- Steve Eisenhaure, land use coordinator. Eisenhaure will discuss progress of the American chestnut plantation at Kingman Farm that includes nearly 400 blight-resistant American chestnut trees.
Brent Loy, emeritus professor of plant biology and genetics, will discuss melon breeding, and breeding and genetic research with the three major classes of fresh market squash: acorn, butternut, and buttercup/kabocha.
The NH Agricultural Experiment Station at the UNH College of Life Sciences and Agriculture was founded in 1887 and is UNH’s original research center. As an elemental component of New Hampshire's land-grant university heritage and mission, the experiment station stewards federal and state funding, including support from the USDA National Institute of Food and Agriculture, to conduct a broad array of agricultural scientific research at the local, state, and national level. The scope of the research includes soil and water conservation and use; plant and animal production, protection, and health; processing, distribution, safety, marketing, and utilization of food and agricultural products; forestry, including range management and range products; multiple use of forest rangelands, and urban forestry; aquaculture; home economics and family life; human nutrition; rural and community development; sustainable agriculture; molecular biology; and biotechnology.
Ray Grizzle, professor of zoology, will discuss his oyster farming research aimed at increasing production of New Hampshire’s rapidly growing oyster aquaculture industry and restoring wild oyster populations that are important to the ecology of Great Bay.
“The New Hampshire Agricultural Experiment Station is a problem-focused research unit created in 1887 as a full partner in the tripartite mission of the land-grant university system. Our many ongoing accomplishments contribute to maintaining efficient, economically viable, and environmentally sustainable food, forest, aquaculture, and farming systems for New Hampshire and beyond,” said Dr. Jon Wraith, director of the NH Agricultural Experiment Station, and dean of the UNH College of Life Sciences and Agriculture.
The experiment station maintains the Woodman and Kingman agronomy and horticultural farms, the Macfarlane Greenhouses, the Fairchild Dairy Teaching and Research Center, and the Organic Dairy Research Farm. Additional properties also provide forage, forests and woodlands in direct support to research, teaching, and outreach.
For more information:
NH Agricultural Experiment Station