August 22-24, Portland

US (OR): Farwest Show hosts workshops for nursery growers

The 2018 Farwest Show, August 22–24 in Portland, Oregon, has scheduled two seminars that touch on subjects of particular concern and interest for nursery growers. The seminars will deal with the timely issues of pesticide use around pollinators and emergent technologies for efficient irrigation programs.

Andony Melathopoulos, assistant professor at Oregon State University, will deliver his address, “Bees: A Four Letter Word, or an Opportunity for Landscapers and Nurseries?,” on Wednesday, Aug. 22, 9:45–10:45 a.m., Room B117. His talk, sponsored by GeoSeed, looks at concern around bee health over the past decade. He’ll share practical steps to safely use pesticides around pollinators and how to market services and products to capture this concern and turn it into revenue. The talk will also outline an Oregon initiative, the Showcase Farm and Oregon Innovators program, which showcases horticultural industries to consumers as bee-friendly.

Melathopoulos leads OSU’s efforts to design, implement and evaluate a statewide pollinator health program. He provides annual training to more than 1,500 pesticide applicators, hosts a weekly podcast on pollinator health (PolliNation) and works to educate homeowners and landscapers on how to manage pests while minimizing impacts to pollinators. He sits on the steering committee of the Oregon Bee Project, which coordinates pollinator health work across state agencies.

A second seminar, “Irrigation Scheduling Strategies,” to be jointly delivered by industry experts Travis Bates and Yassin Osroosh, is scheduled for Thursday, Aug. 23, 1:30–2:30 p.m., Room B117. This presentation will explain the importance of irrigation scheduling and provide information on various technology-based approaches to it. Bates and Osroosh will discuss using soil sensors, ag weather stations, plant sensors and thermal sensing methods for irrigation scheduling. They will also touch on important technologies for fruit loss management.

Bates is a technical sales and support specialist for METER Group Inc. USA, with an emphasis on developing tools that facilitate crop decision making processes in the agricultural sector for agronomists, consultants, and growers.

Osroosh, a research scientist at Washington State University, is affiliated with the university’s Prosser Irrigated Agriculture Research and Extension Center and currently contracted as a research scientist with METER Group Inc. His research is focused on precision irrigation, imagery-based crop sensing and management, and the agricultural “internet of things.”

Registration is required for both seminars and available online at Complete details on the 2018 Farwest Show can be found at

Water terminology in plant descriptions
The 2018 Farwest Show, August 22–24 in Portland, Oregon, has scheduled Lorence R. Oki, a specialist in water-related issues in horticulture, to speak on the descriptive differences between “low water use” plants and “drought tolerant” plants.

Oki, a cooperative extension specialist with the plant sciences department at the University of California Davis, will deliver his address, “Low Water Use or Drought Tolerant Landscape Plants: Are They the Same?,” Friday, Aug. 24, 9:45–10:45 a.m., Room B110. The terms “low water use” and “drought tolerant” are used to describe plants and their irrigation needs, but the terms are not synonymous. Oki will discuss the differences and plant characteristics that indicate how plants use water. He’ll briefly discuss the California landscape water conservation regulations and field trials used to assess landscape plant water use. The resulting information is used to assist with compliance and inform plant professionals how the tested plants may perform when exposed to deficit irrigation.

At UC Davis, Lorence studies water related issues in both production and landscape horticulture including biological water treatment systems, nursery hydrology, water management, nitrogen management, plant salinity tolerance, landscape plant water use, and residential runoff. He is a third-generation nursery person and was a greenhouse and nursery grower before coming to the university.

Registration is required for Oki’s seminar and available online at Complete details on the 2018 Farwest Show can be found at

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