2024 Conference Schedule

**Schedule subject to change**

Monday, February 26th

11:00am – 5:00pm | Registration / Check-In Open – Wilmington Convention Center, River Concourse

Salon F – Wilmington Convention Center

1:00pm – 5:00pm | Fundamentals of Caneberry Production – A workshop for novice growers, potential growers, and anyone who needs a refresher on the basics of raspberry and blackberry production.

1:00pm – 1:35pm | Laura McDermott, Cornell University Cooperative Extension – Basics of Caneberry Production – Site Selection and Site Preparation

1:35pm – 2:10pm | Craig Mauney, North Carolina State University Cooperative Extension – Priority Topics of Pruning and Trellising

2:10pm – 2:45pm | Aaron Cato, University of Arkansas – Insect Management in Caneberries

2:45pm – 3:05pm | Refreshment BreakRiver Concourse

3:05pm – 3:40pm | Sara Villani, North Carolina State University – Disease Management of Caneberries

3:40pm – 4:15pm | Courtney Weber, Cornell AgriTech – Considering Raspberries – Production Issues and Cultivar Considerations

4:15pm – 5:00pm | Grower Panel – Advice for New Growers from Established NARBA Members

Tuesday, February 27th,

8:00am – 9:00am | Registration & Exhibitor Sessions – Wilmington Convention Center, River Concourse

Salons D/E – Wilmington Convention Center

9:00am – 9:10am | Conference Welcome – Amanda McWhirt, NARBA President

9:10am – 9:35am | Opening Remarks – Gina Fernandez, North Carolina State University 

Transition to breakout sessions.

Salons D/E

Breeding Session | Chair: Michael Hardigan

9:40am – 10:05am | Courtney Weber, Cornell AgriTech – Cornell Caneberry Breeding Update

10:05am – 10:30am | Margaret Worthington, University of Arkansas – Updates and New Releases from the Arkansas Blackberry Breeding Program

10:30am – 10:55am | Wendy Hoashi-Erhardt, Washington State University – Raspberry Breeding Update from Washington

10:55am – 11:20am | Ellen Thompson, Hortifrut – Breeding for Premium Berries

Salon F

Long Cane Production Management Session | Chair: Gina Fernandez

9:40am – 10:05am | Joshua Mays, TriEst Ag Group – Longcane Production – Fertility Management

10:05am – 10:30am | Lisa Rayburn, North Carolina State University – Evaluating Pine Bark as an Alternative to Coco Coir for Long-Cane Production of Raspberries in the Southeast – An Update

10:30am – 10:55am | Jamie Petchell, Global Plant Genetics – Long Cane Blackberry Production in Europe

10:55am – 11:20am | Dr. Brian Jackson, North Carolina State University (Presented by Brandan Shur, North Carolina State University) – Elevating Your Production: Substrates for Soilless Fruit Production

Salons D/E

11:30am – 11:55am | Keynote, Steve Troxler – North Carolina Agriculture Commissioner

12:00pm – 1:00pm | LunchSalons A/B/C

12:45pm – 1:15pm | Exhibitor Session & Poster SessionRiver Concourse

Salons D/E

Breeding Session (continued)

1:15pm – 1:40pm | Beatrice Amyotte, Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada – New Goals for Caneberry Breeding at Agriculture Canada

1:40pm – 2:05pm | Michael Hardigan, USDA-ARS – Caneberry Breeding Updates from Oregon

2:05pm – 2:30pm | Breeding Panel / Continued Questions & Answers

New Technology Session | Chair: Ryan Dickson

2:30pm – 2:55pm | Ioannis (Yannis) Tzanetakis, University of Arkansas – Clean Plants and Blackberry Leaf Mottle Virus Epidemiology

Salon F

North Carolina Caneberry Industry Session | Chair: Karen Blaedow

1:15pm – 1:40pm | Tom Kon, North Carolina State University – Enhancing Blackberry Canopy Light Distribution with Reflective Groundcovers

1:40pm – 2:05pm | Juan Carlos Melgar, Clemson University – Blackberry Responses to Light: How Much is Too Much?

2:05pm – 2:30pm | Lisa Rayburn, North Carolina State University – Long-Cane Raspberry Production in NC – Opportunities and Challenges

2:30pm – 2:55pm | Jamie Lanzalotto, North Carolina State University (Presented by Sara Villani, North Carolina State University) – Fusarium Wilt of Blackberry

2:55pm – 3:10pm | Refreshment BreakRiver Concourse

Salons D/E

New Technology Session (continued)

3:10pm – 3:35pm | Amanda McWhirt, University of Arkansas – Recommendations for Reducing Labor and Maximizing Yield on the Rotating Cross Arm Trellis

3:35pm – 4:00pm | Renee Threlfall, University of Arkansas – Using Marketability Attributes for the Initial Development of a Soft Robotic Gripper for Harvesting Fresh-market Blackberries

4:00pm – 4:25pm | Lars Jensen, Blackmore Company – Ellepot/Air Tray Technologies for Berry Crops

4:25pm – 4:50pm | Matthew Bertucci, University of Arkansas – Blackberry Weed Management – New Chemistries and New Technologies

4:50pm – 5:15pm | Dr. Muneer Rehman, University of Florida – Integration Of Chitosan Emulsion and Silicon to Extend the Shelf Life of Blackberry Fruit

Salon F

North Carolina Caneberry Industry Session (Continued)

3:10pm – 3:35pm | Karen Blaedow & Frank Louws, North Carolina State University – NC Caneberry Association Annual Business Meeting

Pest & Disease Control Session | Chair: Aaron Cato

3:35pm – 4:00pm | Sara Villani, North Carolina State University – Problems in Ponca? Case Studies on Recent Cane Dieback

4:00pm – 4:25pm | Cesar Rodriguez-Saona, Rutgers University – Role of Climate Variation on the Population Dynamics of Spotted-Wing Drosophila

4:25pm – 4:50pm | Aaron Cato, University of Arkansas – Evaluating Broad Mite (Polyphagotarsonemus latus) Sampling Techniques in Blackberry

4:50pm – 5:15pm | Fumi Takeda, Research Horticulturist (USDA-ARS, Retired) – Ultraviolet Light: Non-Chemical Disease and Pest Management

5:15pm – 5:35pm | Exhibitor Session & Poster SessionRiver Concourse

WedNEsday, February 28th

8:00am – 8:15am | Exhibitor SessionRiver Concourse

Salons D/E

8:20am – 8:25am | Day 2 Welcome

8:25am – 8:50am | Dr. Daniel Tregeagle, North Carolina State University – 2023 Raspberry & Blackberry Pricing Survey Preliminary Report

8:50am – 9:10am | Elena Rogers, North Carolina State University – Food Safety Update – Timely Topics and Reminders

9:10am – 9:30am | Grower Spotlight – Cal Lewis, Lewis Nursery and Farms, Inc.

9:30am – 9:45am | NARBA Annual Meeting – NARBA Executive Council Officers Report

9:45am – 10:05am | Refreshment Break & Exhibitor SessionRiver Concourse

Salons D/E

Plant Management Session | Chair: Lisa Rayburn

10:05am – 10:30am | Timothy Glotfelty, North Carolina State Climate Office – The Potential Impact of Climate Change on Chill Hours in North Carolina

10:30am – 10:55am | Sarah Strauss, University of Florida IFAS Southwest Florida Research and Education Center – Below the Plastic: What Happens to Soil Microbes After Fumigation

10:55am – 11:20am | Joshua Mays, TriEst Ag Group – Fumigation Programs for Rubus – Discussing Soil Pest and Soil Health Impacts

11:20am – 11:45am | Penelope Perkins-Veazie, North Carolina State University – Does Location Affect Fruit Composition of Raspberry and Blackberry?

Salon F

Pest & Disease Control Session (Continued from Day 1)

10:05am – 10:30am | Elizabeth Cieniewicz, Clemson University – Survey of Known Viruses and Discovery of New Viruses in Blackberry and Wild Rubus in South Carolina

10:30am – 10:55am | Dr. Hannah K. Levenson, North Carolina State University – Incorporating Biological Control into IPM Programs for SWD in Caneberries

10:55am – 11:20am | Alfredo Diaz-Lara, Tecnológico de Monterrey – Adoption of a Standardized Virus Diagnostic Protocol for Blackberry and Raspberry in Mexico and Later Validation Through a Field Survey

11:20am – 11:45am | Pest & Disease Panel / Continued Questions & Answers


11:45am – 12:15pm | Boxed Lunch PickupRiver Concourse

12:30pm – 8:00pm | North Carolina Farm & Industry Tour

The NC Farm Tour buses will leave promptly at 12:30pm on Wednesday, February 28th. It is very important you are ready to depart at that time. We will start loading the buses as early as 12:15pm.

NOTE: This add-on ticket is SOLD OUT. If you wish to be added to the waiting list for last minute cancellations, please email info@raspberryblackberry.com

  • A boxed lunch will be provided at 11:45am after the conference is finished, to be picked up outside the conference rooms.
  • The tour will visit 3 locations:
    • STOP 1: Castle Hayne Horticulture Crops Research Station, North Carolina State University
    • STOP 2: The Carolina Berry Group
    • STOP 3: Lewis Nursery and Farms for a tour, low country boil and BBQ
  • Plan to wear layers of clothing appropriate to tour fields and be outside for the entire afternoon, including dinner, weather permitting.
  • The group will arrive back at 8:30pm to the Embassy Suites.

2024 NARBA Conference Poster Session