Cornell Vegetable Program Enrollment

Program Areas

  • Food Safety
  • Variety Evaluation
  • Market Development
  • Pest Management
  • Cultural Practices

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  • In-Field Educational Opportunities
  • On-Farm Research Trials

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Lettuce / Leafy Greens

Lettuce / Leafy Greens Two dozen or more types of leafy greens are grown in New York, primarily for fresh market production. According to the 2007 Census of Agriculture, 224 New York farms produced 1,398 acres of lettuce. Leaf lettuce is the most widely grown with 758 acres, followed by 381 acres of head lettuce and 260 acres of romaine lettuce. Lettuce is grown for local sales as well as large wholesale markets in the Northeastern, US.

Other popular greens are spinach (247 acres), collards (96 acres), escarole & endive (75 acres), kale (57 acres), mustard greens (36 acres) and turnip greens (16 acres). Additional types for which no statistical information is available include:  arugula, beet greens, bok choy, dandelion greens, radiccho, rapini, swiss chard and watercress.

Field-grown greens are available beginning from May through mid-October (depending on the type). However, the season can be extended by growing in tunnels protected from harsh winter temperatures. 

Relevant Events

Assess and Prevent Food Safety Risks in Leafy Greens Production

March 18, 2021

2021 NYS Dry Bean Meeting

Event Offers DEC Credits

March 19, 2021

Growing for Wholesale: Grading and Packing Guidelines by Crop

Last Modified: August 29, 2019
Growing for Wholesale: Grading and Packing Guidelines by Crop

Grading and packing guidelines are now available for 18 commonly grown specialty crops in NYS: romaine lettuce, acorn squash, broccoli crowns, Brussels sprouts, sweet corn, green peppers, cucumbers, green cabbage, red cabbage, savoy cabbage, cauliflower, eggplant, green beans, jalapenos, poblanos, Hungarian hot peppers, summer squash, and zucchini.


2018 Lettuce Variety Trial First Planting Results

Crystal Stewart-Courtens, Extension Vegetable Specialist
Eastern New York Commercial Horticulture

Last Modified: August 21, 2018
2018 Lettuce Variety Trial First Planting Results

This year's lettuce variety trial was conducted at Pleasant Valley Farm in Argyle, NY. It was planted on May 28th, and harvested August 1st. The main goal of the trial was to evaluate romaine varieties to see which would perform well in hot summer conditions and there were 17 days above 85 degrees. 


Lettuce Variety Trial, 2017

Last Modified: April 3, 2018
Lettuce Variety Trial, 2017

The CCE Eastern NY Commercial Horticulture Program evaluated 20 lettuce varieties in 2017. The outdoor production trial was conducted in Washington County, hosted by Pleasant Valley Farm. The lettuce was rated on disease susceptibility, taste, bitterness, and weight of one head.

Video: New York State Produce Auctions

Last Modified: March 8, 2018
Video: New York State Produce Auctions

Currently, there are 8 produce auctions in New York State. These auctions are aggregation points that allow local farmers to sell their produce in wholesale lots to buyers from across the region. To document the economic impact of produce auctions on agriculture, local businesses, family farms, and produce buyers, the Cornell Vegetable Program worked with Harvest New York to survey top sellers and buyers.

A new Cornell Vegetable Program video shares general information about produce auctions, how buyers and sellers use the auctions to expand their businesses, and how local communities benefit from them.


Organic Production Guides

Robert Hadad, Extension Vegetable Specialist
Cornell Vegetable Program

Last Modified: July 17, 2017
Organic Production Guides

Organic Production Guides for fruits, vegetables and dairy are available through the NYS Integrated Pest Management (IPM) program. They outline general practices for growing vegetable and fruit crops using organic integrated pest management techniques.

Cold Storage Chart and Reference Guide to Commercial Vegetable Storage

Robert Hadad, Extension Vegetable Specialist
Cornell Vegetable Program

Last Modified: December 13, 2016
Cold Storage Chart and Reference Guide to Commercial Vegetable Storage

Commercial vegetable growers will find a Cold Storage Chart by crop type with temperature and relative humidity recommendations. The maximum number of weeks that the crop can be held under ideal conditions is provided as well.

Adapted from the USDA Bulletin #66, The Commercial Storage of Fruits, Vegetables, and Florist and Nursery Stock, growers will find information on quality, grading, sizes, and packaging, chilling and storage, and post-harvest pathology of vegetables.


Video: Produce Washing Stations - How to Use a Germicidal Bleach

Last Modified: January 26, 2016
Video: Produce Washing Stations - How to Use a Germicidal Bleach

Good Agricultural Practices or GAPs are the steps taken in produce packing areas to reduce microbial contamination. One area where reducing micro contamination is critical is in the washing and cleaning of produce. This video shows you a set of standard operating procedures for using a germicidal bleach in a produce washing station. Learn what supplies are required and how to calculate the amount of germicidal bleach needed to sanitize the water.


Video: Farm Food Safety as if Someone's Life Depended On It

Robert Hadad, Extension Vegetable Specialist
Cornell Vegetable Program

Last Modified: April 3, 2015
Video: Farm Food Safety as if Someone's Life Depended On It

This video is an overview of Good Agricultural Practices (GAPs) through on-farm risk assessment. Cornell Cooperative Extension, along with the National GAPs Program and the New York State Department of Agriculture and Markets, has developed and implemented a nationally-recognized training program in GAPs to prepare New York growers for the marketplace's increased vigilance in food safety. You can learn more about that program through this video, as well as updates on the Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA), and economic information on the implementation of GAPs collected from growers through extensive interviews.


Wash Your Greens: A Low-Cost but Effective Washer/Spinner Design

Robert Hadad, Extension Vegetable Specialist
Cornell Vegetable Program

Last Modified: March 26, 2015
Wash Your Greens: A Low-Cost but Effective Washer/Spinner Design

Farm Food Safety practices not only reduces the risk of microbial contamination that can lead to food-borne diseases but can also improve the post-harvest quality of washed vegetables. There are many issues dealing with farm food safety and a lot of research going on. One area centers on low-cost but effective equipment options. Dr. Jay Neal from the University of Houston has designed a greens washer/spinner built from PVC and using a 5 gallon bucket with lid. One of our farmers has built a model and modified the instructions to make building and usage easier.


Winter Aphid Management Fact Sheet

Cordelia Machanoff, Program Aide
Cornell Vegetable Program

Last Modified: December 8, 2014
Winter Aphid Management Fact Sheet

Aphids can be a major problem in winter greens. This fact sheet outlines our experience with biological and biorational controls over four years of field research.

Copper Fungicides for Organic Disease Management in Vegetables

Last Modified: September 16, 2013
Copper Fungicides for Organic Disease Management in Vegetables

There are several different copper fungicides approved for use in organically-produced crops. Copper fungicides are important tools for managing diseases that cannot be effectively managed with cultural practices alone.

Extending the Harvest Season with Fall Production

Robert Hadad, Extension Vegetable Specialist
Cornell Vegetable Program

Last Modified: July 11, 2013
Extending the Harvest Season with Fall Production

Late season production starts in mid spring. For a successful crop, start with a detailed plan. Designate an area specific for late season production so that management can take place in one spot rather than all over the farm. This will make cultivation, pest management, using row cover, and harvesting more efficient to manage.


Ethnic Greens Trial, 2012

Robert Hadad, Extension Vegetable Specialist
Cornell Vegetable Program

Last Modified: January 23, 2013
Ethnic Greens Trial, 2012

Interest in growing ethnic vegetables has been increasing in our region. In response, the Cornell Vegetable Program conducted a two-year ethnic vegetable variety and marketing trial. The focus of the trial was to see how well assortments of vegetables that represent some different nationalities perform in WNY under our wildly fluctuating weather conditions and also to see how growers can market these new vegetables, how customers respond to them at the market, and what is needed to reach targeted communities perhaps. Funding was provided by the Western NY CCE Association group.


more crops
Asparagus

Asparagus

Beets

Beets

Broccoli

Broccoli

Brussels Sprouts

Brussels Sprouts

Cabbage

Cabbage

Carrots

Carrots

Cauliflower

Cauliflower

Cucumbers

Cucumbers

Dry Beans

Dry Beans

Eggplant

Eggplant

Ethnic Vegetables

Ethnic Vegetables

Garlic

Garlic

Horseradish

Horseradish

Kohlrabi

Kohlrabi

Leeks

Leeks

Lettuce / Leafy Greens

Lettuce / Leafy Greens

Melons

Melons

Onions

Onions

Parsnips

Parsnips

Peas

Peas

Peppers

Peppers

Potatoes

Potatoes

Pumpkins / Gourds

Pumpkins / Gourds

Radishes

Radishes

Rhubarb

Rhubarb

Rutabaga

Rutabaga

Snap Beans

Snap Beans

Squash - Summer

Squash - Summer

Squash- Winter

Squash- Winter

Sweet Corn

Sweet Corn

Sweet Potatoes

Sweet Potatoes

Tomatoes

Tomatoes

Turnips

Turnips

more crops

Upcoming Events

Managing Soil Nitrogen in Winter High Tunnels

March 5, 2021

To meet the year-round demand for locally produced food, vegetable farmers have embraced protected agriculture to extend their growing season, improve yields, and enhance crop quality. However, a statewide survey found that after several growing seasons, farmers struggle to maintain productivity due to challenges in long term soil health and fertility management. Cornell Cooperative Extension is exploring practices that high tunnel growers can adopt to better manage soil fertility and improve soil health.

Grab your lunch and join us for a virtual conversation on Friday, March 5, 2021 from 12:00pm - 1:30pm to hear our project updates and research results.

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Assess and Prevent Food Safety Risks in Leafy Greens Production

March 18, 2021

This training will provide an overview of possible sources of contamination related to soil amendments, wildlife, water, post-harvest handling, transportation and more. This training will emphasize specific risks that leafy greens growers may experience, identify tangible corrective actions that can be taken, and provide participants the opportunity to work through example scenarios as a group.

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2021 NYS Dry Bean Meeting

Event Offers DEC Credits

March 19, 2021

Join the us for the annual Dry Bean Meeting! There will be presentations covering the latest research in NY dry beans. Topic areas include market updates, white mold management, Western bean cutworm and soybean cyst nematode management, herbicide resistance management, dry bean variety testing, and incorporating NY dry beans into schools. This meeting is sponsored by Genesee Valley Bean Company, and Bayer CropScience.

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Announcements

Essentials of Farm Food Safety for Farmworkers

Call to Schedule a Tailored Training for Your Farm Workers
This is a training is brought to you by the CCE Cornell Vegetable Program. Workers will learn the importance of farm food safety and the ins and outs of how it works on the farm and field.

This training aims to cover many of the required worker training topics set forth by GAPs (Good Agricultural Practices and FSMA (the Food Safety Modernization Act), or other 3rd party auditing programs. This training series primarily focuses on training farmworkers in the produce industry. Because Food Safety is a company-wide responsibility, we invite all farm employees to participate in this training. Each farm has unique operating practices but the basics of food safety are critical skill set needed for workers to have if a smoothly operating food safety program is going to work on your farm. Topics covered include:
  • Understand the role of worker training in ensuring food safety on your farm
  • Cover all the important points required for training
  • Identify challenges to consider when training workers and discuss solutions
  • Cover required records for training
  • Introduce resources available to managers to assist in training
  • Why is farm food safety important?
  • How does produce become contaminated?
  • What are the signs that you or a coworker are ill?
  • How can you minimize food safety risks on the farm?
  • What should you do if you see a risk you cannot reduce or eliminate?
  • And much more
We can provide a tailored training for your workers through an online program before the season starts or combine workers with another farm to do a larger training. Contact Robert Hadad for more information.

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