NACOGDOCHES, Texas — Stephen F. Austin State University’s SFA Gardens will host the inaugural Kiwifruit Field Day with Dr. David Creech, SFA Gardens director, and Tim Hartmann, Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service employee, from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Sept. 30 at the Brundrett Conservation Education Building.

Through this introduction to growing kiwifruit in East Texas, Creech will lead participants on a journey through kiwifruit production practices in China, New Zealand, Nacogdoches and Alabama. He also will discuss best management practices from established growers across the world.

Hartmann will discuss the “nuts and bolts” of growing kiwifruit, including site selection, pruning, pest control, trellising, and pre- and post-harvest techniques. He also will discuss species and varieties that will grow best in the South.

“SFA Gardens is home to the very first production of green and golden kiwifruit in Texas,” Creech said. “While the verdict is not in, there’s plenty of room for optimism. With the right varieties, proper pruning and training, good irrigation, and a strong post-harvest and marketing program, this exciting fruit may be part of the Texas fruit picture.”

Research into the adaptation and feasibility of kiwifruit production in the state by the Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service and SFA has been made possible thanks to a Specialty Crop Block Grant through the Texas Department of Agriculture. 4 pesticide applicator CEU credits are available for the Field Day.

The registration deadline is Sept. 25. The field day costs $25 and includes lunch. To register, please fill out an online form: Kiwifruit Regisration Form, or contact SFA Gardens at (936) 468-4404 or [email protected].