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  • Almonds Begin to Thrive in Northern Parts of California

    Farmers in the Central Valley and San Joaquin Valley in California have been abandoning the growing of cotton and lettuce and planting almond orchards over the last 15 years because almonds are more lucrative and do not need to be replanted after each harvest. California's almond orchards now produce 80% of the world's almonds.

    The problem is that almond orchards require lots of water, but there is severe drought in the areas most populated with almond orchards. Read the full article >>

  • Research to measure use, effectiveness of Internet-based devices in growing pecans

    The United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) has awarded a grant to TekWear, LLC, Georgia Institute of Technology and the University of Georgia to evaluate the effectiveness of innovative wireless, web-connected technologies for monitoring and growing specialty crops such as pecans. Read the full article >>

  • The Return of the American Chestnut through Genetic Engineering

    For decades scientists have been using traditional hybridization methods to breed an American chestnut tree which is immune to the fungus that wiped out the American chestnut in the early 20th century.

    Plant scientists have found a new way to fight this fungus. They have used a gene from wheat to create a strain which produces a substance that neutralizes the fungus's lethal acid. This trait is passed along to seedlings.

    Experimental stands of these genetically modified trees have been planted by researchers. If permission is granted by the EPA and the Department of Agriculture, these American chestnut trees will be planted in the wild.

    In the meantime plant scientists continue to work on developing American chestnut trees with even more resistance.

  • Thousand Cankers Disease Continues to Spread

    Click here for a description of Thousand Cankers Disease and links to up-to-date news about the spread of this disease which kills black walnut trees.

  • Hershey's Nut Grove - A Demonstration Planting of Nut Trees, Pawpaw and Persimmons Trees

    With the help of Tucker Hill's grafting skills and the willingness of NNGA members to donate trees, 76 of the donated trees have been planted in Hershey Gardens.

    Alternately called a nut-tree "grove" or "forest," the nearly eight-acre work-in-progress will be home to over 100 nut-bearing trees of various species including black and Persian walnut, butternut, heartnut, shagbark and shellbark hickory, pecan, hican (a hybrid of hickory and pecan), hazelnut, chinquapin, American chestnut, pawpaw, persimmon, white oak and pinenut.

    Read the full article on Hershey's Nut Grove and see pictures.

    This article is reprinted from the November 2012 issue of the Harrisburg Magazine with permission of Harrisburg Magazine, 3400 N. 6th St., Harrisburg, PA 17110.

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Updated: January 7, 2015