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‘Goober’ Gathering

The Roanoke-Chowan area is famous for growing high-quality peanuts, including these “goobers” awaiting harvest last year on the Spruill farm near Como. File Photo

The Roanoke-Chowan area is famous for growing high-quality peanuts, including these “goobers” awaiting harvest last year on the Spruill farm near Como. File Photo

LEWISTON – For more than a century, the rich and fertile soil of northeastern North Carolina has produced quality peanuts that are shipped and consumed around the world.

But producing such a world-famous product does not come by accident. It takes proper planning and staying abreast of the latest farming techniques.

To that end, peanut growers in eastern ‘Carolina will get an opportunity to see and hear the latest research and Cooperative Extension information at an annual field day set for Sept. 5 at the Peanut Belt Research Station in Lewiston-Woodville.

Another field day is scheduled for Sept. 11 at the Tobacco Research Station in Whiteville.

The Sept. 5 event in Lewiston-Woodville is the “granddaddy” of field days, celebrating its 61st year in 2013.

According to the Southeast Farm Press (www.southeastfarmpress.com), both programs will feature peanut research and Extension specialists at North Carolina State University and leaders of the peanut industry and an update on this year’s crop from Bob Sutter, executive director of the North Carolina Peanut Growers Association.

Both programs are sponsored by North Carolina State University College of Life Sciences, the North Carolina Department of Agriculture and Consumer Affairs and a number of industry representatives.

After back to back outstanding growing seasons for peanuts in North Carolina, the 2013 season has been plagued by excessive rainfall and long periods of cool, damp weather in most areas of the state.

David Jordan, North Carolina State peanut specialist, Sutter, and others will provide statewide summaries of this year’s crop.

Registration for the Lewiston-Woodville field day begins at 8:45 a.m. and will be followed by four stops, beginning at 9 a.m.

“The tour focuses on selected areas of the Research Station. Other research projects along the tour route are identified by signs. You are welcome to visit these additional sites on your own,” Jordan says.

Tour stops include: #1 – Breeding and Variety Development with Tom Isleib, a peanut breeder in the Crop Science Department at North Carolina State University; #2 – Disease Management with Barbara Shew, a plant pathologist at North Carolina State; #3 – Insect Management with Rick Brandenburg, an entomologist at North Carolina State; and #4 – Agronomy and Weed Management, with David Jordan.

The field tours will be followed at 11 a.m. with a program featuring remarks from leaders of the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences at North Carolina State University, the North Carolina Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services, and the Peanut Belt Research Station.

Marianne Copelan, executive director of the Virginia-Carolinas Peanut Promotions Board, and Dell Cotton, manager of the Peanut Growers Cooperative Marketing Association, will give updates on the activities of their respective organizations.

Lunch, sponsored by Ag Carolina Financial, Bayer Crop Science, Cape Fear Farm Credit, National Peanut Board, PNC Bank, and Southern Bank, will be provided at 1 p.m.