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Observations from a New Grower Using Plasticulture in Strawberry and Vegetable Production. Mike and Dianna Wilson Lily Lane Farms. Our story. Lily Lane Farms – started in 2012 21 acres located in Enfield, IL We grow strawberries, tomatoes, peppers, sweet corn, greens, cucumbers, and squash
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Observations from a New Grower Using Plasticulturein Strawberry and Vegetable Production Mike and Dianna Wilson Lily Lane Farms
Our story • Lily Lane Farms – started in 2012 • 21 acres located in Enfield, IL • We grow strawberries, tomatoes, peppers, sweet corn, greens, cucumbers, and squash • Sell mainly at farmers markets locally and in St. Louis, also in local restaurants and from the farm
FIRST YEAR WITH STRAWBERRIES ON PLASTICULTURE • LAYING PLASTIC • 19 rows, 275 feet long • 28 inch wide, 3-4 inch tall ridges • 4 foot black plastic • Observations: • Make sure closing wheels are set correctly to get adequate dirt back over the plastic so that plastic does not come loose • Work soil finely before starting, the beds will form a lot better • Lay ridges first, then lay plastic • Borrowed a mulch-layer, took a while to set up
FIRST Year with strawberries on plasticulture • PLANTING STRAWBERRIES • Planted 8,000 Chandler plants • Staggered 14 inch spacings • Took 8 hours to plant them • Observations: • Good to have a holding tank to quickly fill setter water • The spike we used was too big • Pressed in plants behind setter
First year with strawberries on plasticulture • ROW COVERS • 1.5 oz per yard • 36 foot wide • Used concrete blocks every 15 feet to hold down • Covered low of 38 degrees • Observations: • Make sure you use the correct oz/yard, it does make a different • Can be re-used if stored properly
First year with strawberries on plasticulture • PRODUCTION • 5762 total quarts picked • Picking season May 1st to June 26th • Seven days picked more than 300 quarts per day • Highest production day May 17th • 726 quarts picked • Observations: • Picked from 6 am to 10-11 am each day • Plastic kept berries out of mud
First year with vegetables on plasticulture • LAYING PLASTIC AND PLANTING • Bought our own mulch-layer and setter • 4 foot plastic • Tomatoes • Cherry tomatoes • Peppers • Yellow squash • Cucumbers • Zucchini
First year with vegetables on plasticulture in high tunnel • LAYING PLASTIC AND PLANTING • Plastic was laid by hand • Time consuming • Hard to keep tension • Mid-June high tunnel came down
First year with vegetables on plasticulture • PRODUCTION • 210 yellow squash • 649 cucumbers • 1727 peppers • 1685.5 pounds tomatoes • 102 pints cherry tomatoes • 218 zucchini • Observations: • Not as much cracking in tomatoes • Easier to pick
Contact information Michael mobile: (618) 926-5302 Email: email@example.com Facebook: Lily Lane Farms