Point of Purchase Education for Growers and Gardeners on Diseases Resistant Vegetable Transplants 2009
Project Leaders: E. Lamb, NYS IPM; L. Bushway, Department of Horticulture, Cornell University
Sales of vegetable transplants have been increasing in the last few years as more people try home gardening. This creates a need for education so that new gardeners will have a positive experience, and an opportunity to provide information that helps new gardeners use IPM in their gardens. While information on disease resistant vegetable varieties is available, not all home gardeners know where to find it and not all producer/retailers use it a factor in choosing the transplant varieties to sell. This project has two objectives: 1) to encourage producer/retailers to grow and market disease resistant vegetable varieties for home gardeners, and 2) to encourage home gardeners to choose resistant vegetable varieties for a successful gardening experience.
An initial survey of growers found that, while disease resistance is considered in choice of variety, it is less important than local adaptation and previous popularity of a variety. Only a third of growers felt confident in using disease resistance to market vegetable transplants but 82% of growers would be more likely to do it if marketing materials were available.
Based on this information, we designed and distributed posters, bookmarks and brochures as point of purchase materials to promote the use of disease resistant vegetable varieties by home gardeners, explain what disease resistance is, and promote the Cornell Vegetable Varieties for Gardeners website as a source of information on which varieties have resistance.