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Organic Research

Today at the Clemson Coastal Research and Education Center Organic Research Farm (CREC ORF), multiple projects are ongoing to identify successful strategies for transitioning and existing organic growers. Vegetable crop rotations utilizing intercropping and poly-cropping of winter grains with understory plantings of legumes and brassicas are an intricate part of building healthy soils and controlling weeds and soilborne pathogens. Along with our grain trials, an active rice project is underway to identify strategies for successful organic rice production.

Precision fertility and cultivar trials take place annually at CREC ORF on a multitude of crops including onion, tomato, pepper, melon, broccoli, sweet corn, southern pea, and others. Specialty niche crops are investigated for repatriation and inclusion into vegetable rotations, including Ossabaw Island indigo, Sea Island cotton, and Carolina African Runner peanut.

Weed control is of special interest to organic growers. CREC ORF has recently acquired specialty three-point hitch-mount row flamers and a Rodale Institute-inspired, front-mount roller-crimper and a rear-mount precision air seeder for conducting "no-till-drill" vegetable production and weed control studies.