Industrial Hemp Varietal Trial 2020

Hemp is in the air at HAREC with our program conducting two experiments that are well under way and flowering beginning to initiate.

Our hemp varietal trial aims to identify cultivars suitable for CBD oil production in this region and consists of 14 different varieties. We’ll be tracking parameters such as germination, plant shape and growth rate, environmental stress and pest pressure, time to flower and flower yield, and finally CBD yield.

This trial was made possible through a collaboration of private industry and the OSU Hemp Innovation Center. Thanks to our horticulture team for all of their hard work to ensure the success of this experiment with such a novel crop.

Initial flowering stage (8-20-20)
From L to R: Logan Clark, Alex Gregory, Tim Gould

Corn Planting

Scott and Logan establishing our corn trial for the 2020 season. This trial is an industry funded experiment to evaluate the yield of different varieties and seed treatments.

Organic Blueberries in the Columbia Basin

We have been berry busy.

The Organic Transitions Program (ORG), a branch of The United States Department of Agriculture National Institute of Food and Agriculture (USDA NIFA) recently awarded assistant professor Dr. Scott Lukas from the Hermiston Agricultural Research and Extension Center (HAREC) and a team of collaborating investigators at Oregon State University (OSU), Washington State University (WSU), and The USDA Agricultural Research Service (ARS) a three year grant to conduct trials designed to identify and optimize nutrient and pH management strategies most suitable for organic blueberry production east of the Cascades. These trials began Spring of 2020 and are being conducted throughout the PNW for a three-year period.

Project Objectives:

  1. Provide a long-term strategy for quickly reducing and maintaining soil pH for organic blueberry
  2. Determine if composted grape pomace, alone or with an acidifying agent, and surface-applied or incorporated, is a suitable organic matter amendment for organic blueberry. 
  3. Determine if biochar produced from prunings is suitable and cost effective for increasing organic matter by raising carbon content in organic blueberry fields. 
  4. Complete a cost-benefit analysis to determine the economic impacts and viability of investigated practices.
  5. Develop region-specific educational programs related to planting establishment and nutrient management, including the dissemination of project information and evaluation of impact.

More to come on this project throughout the season and upcoming years.

Hemp Harvest

Horticulture and Agronomy students collecting growth and biomass data for our hemp field trials.

Hemp planting

We initiated the first of three planting dates for industrial hemp at HAREC.  We will be evaluating biomass production and the effects of planting date, density and crop manipulation (pinching).  Finally, the spring weather allowed us to get seeds in the ground.  More to come.


Welcome to the website of the Oregon State University, Integrative Horticulture Program!

In our lab, we focus on providing research-based solutions to high value irrigated crops, with an emphasis on optimizing production system outputs while reducing negative environmental impacts. Research crops currently include onion, blueberry, grapes, hops, sweet corn, carrot, watermelon, peppers, tree fruits, beans, broccoli,  peas, almond and saffron.  New crop introduction are also being evaluated to determine suitability for regional production.