NDSU Horticulture Farm field day set for Aug. 17

Farm Forum

If you are interested in learning more about hardy landscape trees, high-tunnel production, hops, organic vegetable growing and fruit research, then plan to attend the North Dakota State University Horticulture Farm field day on Aug.17 near Absaraka. The field day will run from 3 to 7 p.m.

The 80-acre farm includes the 35-acre Dale E. Herman Research Arboretum, named after the NDSU professor emeritus of Horticulture and Forestry. The arboretum is the largest collection of woody plants in the northern Plains.

This family-friendly field day will showcase an arboretum tree walk led by Todd West, NDSU associate professor in woody plant improvement. He will discuss which trees thrive in North Dakota and current NDSU tree introductions.

Tours will be given of a recently constructed high tunnel.

“In North Dakota, high tunnels have become a popular way for hobby and commercial growers to extend the growing season for vegetables,” says Esther McGinnis, NDSU Extension Service horticulturist. “We are growing cucumbers, peppers, tomatoes and cut flowers in the high tunnel.”

Fruit research projects on hardy grape and raspberry breeding, blackberry overwintering practices and Juneberry cultivar trials will be featured. NDSU Department of Plant Sciences faculty also will give talks on lawn care, mower maintenance, tomato and potato problems, and tree care.

New this year, Don Carey, “The Bug Man,” will be on hand to entertain the kids. He will give presentations at 3 and 4 p.m. on Bugs!! and Weird Science, respectively. Last Bend Grill, a food vendor, will sell gyros, fries, cheese curds and beverages.

Directions to the NDSU Horticulture Research Farm are:

• From east/west: Take I-94 and turn north at Wheatland Exit 324. Follow pavement to the north, which curves to west shortly after passing through Wheatland. Turn north (right) on Cass County Road 5 (paved road). At Absaraka corner, the road changes to gravel at a slight curve. Go north about three-fourths of a mile (sign posted). Turn east (right) on field road and proceed one-half mile to Horticulture Research Farm, which is bordered by trees.

• From north: Take I-29 south to Argusville Exit 79. Go west approximately 20 miles on Cass County Road 4 (paved). Turn south on Cass County Road 5 (gravel, sign posted) for approximately four miles. Turn east (left) prior to Absaraka corner (sign posted) and proceed one-half mile to Horticulture Research Farm, which is bordered by trees.