100 episodes

Cultural and technical information for greenhouse professionals.

TECH ON DEMAND brought to you by GrowerTalks Bill Calkins

    • Business
    • 4.6 • 10 Ratings

Cultural and technical information for greenhouse professionals.

    Growing Lisianthus: Everything You Need to Know

    Growing Lisianthus: Everything You Need to Know

    In this comprehensive episode covering a key cut flower, Ball Seed’s cut flower business manager Joan Mazat and Sakata Seed America’s product technical manager Bob Croft join host Bill Calkins to discuss Lisianthus and share tips and tricks for selecting and producing top-quality crops.
     
    You’ll quickly realize that Bob has tremendous knowledge about and experience with Lisianthus, as he walks greenhouse growers and flower farmers through the ins and outs of the crop—from site preparation and proper classification/grouping to managing all factors of plant growth (light, water, nutrition, temperature and gas exchange) and controlling pests and diseases. Bob wraps up with harvesting protocols, post-harvest strategies and storage tips before he and Joan share some of their favorite series and why Lisianthus is a cut flower favorite.
     
    Resources:
     
    Ball Seed Cut Flower Programs: https://www.ballseed.com/cutflowers/
     
    Sakata Cut Flower Technical Sheets: https://sakataornamentals.com/resources/

    • 55 min
    Biosolutions in 2024 (Part Two) ft. Koppert’s Jeremy Webber

    Biosolutions in 2024 (Part Two) ft. Koppert’s Jeremy Webber

    In this conversational Tech On Demand podcast two-part episode, host Bill Calkins and his guest Jeremy Webber cover an extremely popular topic these days, biosolutions, in a way that showcases Jeremy’s experience as a grower and as a trusted biocontrols advisor who’s worked with greenhouses of all sizes (growing a wide range of crops from edibles to ornamentals to cannabis and more) to develop and implement biological crop protection programs. As crop team manager at Koppert US, Jeremy works with experienced teams in the field and in the lab and has a tremendous amount of knowledge and experience in modern integrated pest management (IPM) strategies that he shares over the course of two podcast episodes. Be sure to listen to Part One before hitting play on the second part because they go together.
     
    Bill and Jeremy start episode one discussing the history of Koppert and its 50+-year history of innovation, as well as the company’s vision for 100% sustainable agriculture, before moving on to why biosolutions are on just about every greenhouse professional’s mind and why more are considering bios every year. Then Bill jumps into some rapid-fire questions based on discussions with growers and some most asked questions—like when to use bios versus conventional pesticides and how costs line up between the two. Throughout the first part, Jeremy considers why he (as a former grower) feels biological approaches are critical for our industry’s future, the importance of trust when partnering with a biosolutions supplier, some examples of success moving the industry forward and why bios are a sustainable strategy for any greenhouse operation.
     
    In the second part, Jeremy and Bill dive into some more tactical topics like “gateway” pests to start approaching with biological controls, some favorite predators, unexpected lessons learned from the cannabis side of the industry and why “trials” is possibly not the best word to use when implementing biosolutions on a small scale. Since Jeremy has plenty of greenhouse production experience, Bill asks him for some absolute no-brainer ways that biocontrol strategies can be implemented into any greenhouse immediately—with just-about-guaranteed results.
     
    Before closing, Jeremy and Bill chat a bit about what biosolutions in horticulture will look like in the future and why the market is in the right place at the right time. Jeremy also shares a couple quick tips for application and release best practices for biocontrols from his article in the 2024 GrowerTalks Biosolutions Guide (find a link to the digital version below.)
     
     
    RESOURCES:
     
    2024 GrowerTalks Biosolutions Guide: https://www.growertalks.com/pdf/BioSolutions_Guide_0624.pdf
     
    Koppert U.S.: https://www.koppertus.com/
     
    Koppert Consultants & Locations: https://www.koppertus.com/about-koppert/koppert-consultants-and-locations/
     
    Koppert Crop Protection Products: https://www.koppertus.com/crop-protection/

    • 42 min
    Biosolutions in 2024 (Part One) ft. Koppert’s Jeremy Webber

    Biosolutions in 2024 (Part One) ft. Koppert’s Jeremy Webber

    In this conversational Tech On Demand podcast two-part episode, host Bill Calkins and his guest Jeremy Webber cover an extremely popular topic these days, biosolutions, in a way that showcases Jeremy’s experience as a grower and as a trusted biocontrols advisor who’s worked with greenhouses of all sizes (growing a wide range of crops from edibles to ornamentals to cannabis and more) to develop and implement biological crop protection programs. As crop team manager at Koppert US, Jeremy works with experienced teams in the field and in the lab and has a tremendous amount of knowledge and experience in modern integrated pest management (IPM) strategies that he shares over the course of two podcast episodes. Be sure to listen to Part One before hitting play on the second part because they go together.
     
    Bill and Jeremy start episode one discussing the history of Koppert and its 50+-year history of innovation, as well as the company’s vision for 100% sustainable agriculture, before moving on to why biosolutions are on just about every greenhouse professional’s mind and why more are considering bios every year. Then Bill jumps into some rapid-fire questions based on discussions with growers and some most asked questions—like when to use bios versus conventional pesticides and how costs line up between the two. Throughout the first part, Jeremy considers why he (as a former grower) feels biological approaches are critical for our industry’s future, the importance of trust when partnering with a biosolutions supplier, some examples of success moving the industry forward and why bios are a sustainable strategy for any greenhouse operation.
     
    In the second part, Jeremy and Bill dive into some more tactical topics like “gateway” pests to start approaching with biological controls, some favorite predators, unexpected lessons learned from the cannabis side of the industry and why “trials” is possibly not the best word to use when implementing biosolutions on a small scale. Since Jeremy has plenty of greenhouse production experience, Bill asks him for some absolute no-brainer ways that biocontrol strategies can be implemented into any greenhouse immediately—with just-about-guaranteed results.
     
    Before closing, Jeremy and Bill chat a bit about what biosolutions in horticulture will look like in the future and why the market is in the right place at the right time. Jeremy also shares a couple quick tips for application and release best practices for biocontrols from his article in the 2024 GrowerTalks Biosolutions Guide (find a link to the digital version below.)
     
     
    RESOURCES:
     
    2024 GrowerTalks Biosolutions Guide: https://www.growertalks.com/pdf/BioSolutions_Guide_0624.pdf
     
    Koppert U.S.: https://www.koppertus.com/
     
    Koppert Consultants & Locations: https://www.koppertus.com/about-koppert/koppert-consultants-and-locations/
     
    Koppert Crop Protection Products: https://www.koppertus.com/crop-protection/

    • 39 min
    Audio Files: Best Management Practices for Unrooted Cuttings

    Audio Files: Best Management Practices for Unrooted Cuttings

    BEST MANAGEMENT PRACTICES FOR UNROOTED CUTTINGS
    FROM THE NOVEMBER 2022 ISSUE OF GROWERTALKS MAGAZINE
    WRITTEN BY JULIE MARTENS FORNEY
    NARRATED BY BILL CALKINS
     
    EXCERPT: When delays are excessive, cuttings experience moisture loss, low carbohydrates and possible pathogen development. In some species, ethylene sensitivity increases as carbohydrate levels drop. If cuttings are stressed due to shipping delays, you might see dropping leaves, leaf yellowing or death, dead growing tips or disease.
     
    Read the digital edition of GrowerTalks Magazine—November 2022: https://www.ballpublishing.com/magazine/gt_22_11/index.aspx

    • 10 min
    Success with Poinsettias (Part 2)

    Success with Poinsettias (Part 2)

    You may or may not know that before this podcast, Bill Calkins hosted another one called STEM: Insider Tips for Greenhouse Pros and although the technology was different,  the topics were important and the guests were top-notch. Every now and then, he’ll jump back in time and re-release a STEM episode. In this Tech On Demand Podcast Rewind, we’re wrapping up a 2-part Rewind miniseries on poinsettias. You’ll recognize the guests—now-retired Ball Seed Technical Manager Dr. Will Healy tackled the early stages of poinsettia production in part one and now we’ll hear from Dr. Todd Cavins (former Ball Seed tech guru, now taking his talents to PanAmerican Seed) to take everyone’s favorite seasonal crop to the finish line.
    Dr. Todd Cavins is back to finish up our two-part episode on poinsettias. Part 1 kicked off the topic last episode focusing on nutrition, explaining that when it comes to poinsettias, if you have the nutrition right, most of your problems will be greatly reduced. If you haven’t listened to that episode yet, we suggest stopping this one and going back in the archives to Success with Poinsettias (Part 1). If you have listened, great! Todd is going to pick up where Will left off and wrap the topic up by covering tools for height measurement and management, as well as pest monitoring and control strategies. Somewhere around weeks 39 or 40 are critical junctures for this important crop and as Todd tells us, it’s transition and adjustment time and he’s going to share knowledge, tips and tricks to help you make the most of your poinsettia crop, how to use a new graphical tracking tool available from Ball Seed, determining your optimal PGR regime and even some postharvest tricks to maximize sell through at retail. We have a lot to cover this time and Todd certainly lives up to the challenge.
    Resources: 
     
    EC Monitor: https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B000VVVEUI?pf_rd_p=2edffb5d-036e-4cd0-bc77-99980e2d4856&pf_rd_r=0BYNK2B0GCMMRYBKW6K9 
    Selecta One Poinsettia Catalog (Culture Guides on Page 43): https://www.selectanorthamerica.com/documents/SEL_2024_Poinsettia_Catalog_23620850.pdf
     
    Ball Seed Poinsettia Growth Tracker Tool: https://www.ballseed.com/CatalogsBrochures/#digital-tools  

    • 40 min
    Success with Poinsettias (Part 1)

    Success with Poinsettias (Part 1)

    You may or may not know that before this podcast, Bill Calkins hosted another one called STEM: Insider Tips for Greenhouse Pros and although the technology was different (old school mic, Skype, all sorts of file converting …) the topics were important and the guests were top-notch. Once every couple weeks, we’ll jump back in time and re-release a STEM episode. In this Tech On Demand Podcast Rewind, we’re kicking off a 2-part Rewind miniseries on poinsettias. You’ll recognize the guests—now-retired Ball Seed Technical Manager Dr. Will Healy tackles the early stages of poinsettia production in this episode and hands it off to Dr. Todd Cavins to finish the crop in part two.
     
    In this first part, Dr. Healy takes a deep dive into Nutrition. As he explains, when it comes to poinsettias, if you have the nutrition right, most of your problems will be greatly reduced. We start with an overview of the importance of monitoring EC and pH and quickly get into the nitty gritty details of how to approach feeding your crop, the benefits of front-loading fertilizer and even why withholding feed is a bad strategy. Will does a great job explaining how your feeding decisions impact the EC of the crop, as well as how feed leads to excellent or poor crop presentation at retail. If you are wondering what to do if EC starts to creep up, be sure to listen all the way to the end. 
     
    We also spend time on pH and what can be gained by staying in the optimal 5.8 to 6.2 range. One of the most applicable parts of this episode is Dr. Healy’s explanation of how to determine crop needs based on the size of leaves on the plant and how you can effectively measure them using your two hands! As we wrap the episode up, Will talks about watering and shares some poinsettia specific watering strategies. As mentioned before, you are going to want to listen this one all the way to the end. And also, share it with your entire poinsettia team because when you’re all on the same page, good things will happen. 
     
    Resources: 
     
    EC Monitor: https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B000VVVEUI?pf_rd_p=2edffb5d-036e-4cd0-bc77-99980e2d4856&pf_rd_r=0BYNK2B0GCMMRYBKW6K9 
    Selecta One Poinsettia Catalog (Culture Guides on Page 43): https://www.selectanorthamerica.com/documents/SEL_2024_Poinsettia_Catalog_23620850.pdf
     
    Ball Seed Poinsettia Growth Tracker Tool: https://www.ballseed.com/CatalogsBrochures/#digital-tools  

    • 53 min

Customer Reviews

4.6 out of 5
10 Ratings

10 Ratings

OldBluuue ,

Great podcast for all greenhouse growers

I am glad Bill Caulkins is back doing a podcast. He brings in very experienced and educated people that speak on important topics for all professional greenhouse growers and growers in training.

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