Farm Field Day showcases Pee Dee agriculture

By Peter Hull

TractorMore than 200 growers visited the Pee Dee Research and Education Center near Florence on August 10 for the annual Farm Field Day agricultural showcase.

The annual event is open to the public and featured tours of research projects, including Clemson’s long leaf pine restoration program, switchgrass use as a biofuel, muscadine grapes, soybean and cotton breeding, cotton insect management, peanut varieties and tobacco insect control.

Palmetto State farmers stand to benefit from an expected surge in demand for alternative fuels, particularly ethanol produced from switchgrass, a native perennial plant that is drought-tolerant and requires little care.

Afternoon speakers were S.C. Commissioner of Agriculture Hugh Weathers; David Winkles, president of the S.C. Farm Bureau; and Charlotte Krugler, emergency preparedness veterinarian with Clemson University Livestock-Poultry Health. In addition, U.S. Department of Agriculture soil scientist Ariel Szogi provided Certified Crop Advisor training for soil nutrient management.

The 2,300-acre center conducts research and extension programs on field crops of the Pee Dee region, as well as turfgrass and agroecology.



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