The annual Brushy Mountain/Northwest Tree Fruit Meeting is Feb. 9 at the Wilkes County Center of the N.C. Cooperative Extension Service at the Wilkes County Agricultural Center, 416 Executive Drive, Wilkesboro .

Orchardists from North Carolina and surrounding states are encouraged to attend, stated a press release.

This year’s program will feature research updates from N.C. State Extension specialists and agents and a grower panel on labor. Exhibitors and sponsors present at the meeting. There also will be a meal.

The meeting is free and open to the public. Prior registration is required to obtain an accurate headcount for the meal.

People planning to attend are asked to register ASAP or by Feb. 4 on the Eventbrite Page or by calling the N.C. Cooperative Extension — Wilkes County Center at 336-651-7333 or 336-651-7335.

“This meeting is suitable for commercial growers and those who work with the commercial orchard industry. This will not address homeowner/backyard fruit production,” the release stated.

Pesticide recertification credits (N,O,D,X) will be offered for NC Pesticide Applicators, pending approval.

The tentative agenda is:

• 9 a.m., welcome and introductions;

• 9:05 a.m. “New Food Safety Regulations and Proposed Rules,” Elena Rogers, area specialized agent, fresh produce safety, N.C. State Extension;

• 9:35 a.m., “Going Back to Basics: Disease Management Considerations after a Relatively Management-less Year,” Dr. Sara Villani, extension specialist, N.C. State Department of Entomology and Plant Pathology;

• 10:05 a.m., “Life after Lorsban; and Who Has Stink Bug Problems?” Dr. Jim Walgenbach, extension specialist, N.C. State Department of Entomology and Plant Pathology;

• 10:35 a.m., “New PGRs to Manage Crop Load, Dr. Tom Kon, Southeastern apple research specialist, N.C. State Department of Horticultural Science;

• 11 a.m., “Tools to Predict Fruit Set Following a Chemical Thinner Application,” Jimmy Larsen, Ph. D. candidate, N.C. State;

• 11:30 a.m., “Economic Outlook for Apples,” Dr. Daniel Tregeagle, extension specialist, N.C. State Department of Agriculture and Natural Resource Economics;

• 12 — 1 p.m., lunch;

• 1 p.m., “Adding Niche Tree Crops to Diversify,” Craig Mauney, area specialized agent, fruit and vegetable crops, N.C. State Extension;

• 1:30- 2:30 p.m., “Labor Issues in Local Production,” grower panel;

The meeting is co-hosted by N.C. Cooperative Extension, Wilkes and Alexander county centers.

Contact Eli Snyder, horticulture extension agent in Wilkes County at (elina_snyder@ncsu.edu) or Cari Mitchell, horticulture extension agent in Alexander County, at cari_mitchell@ncsu.edu with any questions.

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