Pistachio Information and Technology Groups – PIT Groups.
Pistachio Information and Technology Groups (PIT Groups) are an initiate of PGAI and partly funded by the Australian Government through Horticulture Innovation Australia (HIA), beginning in 2014 in pistachio production regions. PIT Groups are a valuable source of information on all aspects of production, from irrigation through chill hours to harvesting, pest and disease management – and just a great opportunity to catch up with other Pistachio growers.
On this page you will find all presentations (in PDF format) from each of the meetings and yearly symposia and relevant photographs as well a few videos and PIT Group Meeting report summaries.
Technology Transfer to Pistachio growers utilising regional grower group.
The outputs from this project will be:
- Establishment of Pistachio ‘Tech Groups’ for growers within three regional areas of the Riverland. Mildura/Robinvale and Swan Hill.
- Regular communications and interaction between growers within the specific regions.
- A program of a minimum of two ‘Tech Group’ meetings/field days in each of the regions at relevant times of the production cycle.
- The utilisation of Australian and/or International Pistachio experts/technicians in ‘roadshows’ throughout the growing regions to give presentations on their specific areas of expertise.
- Compilation of technical information from overseas and Australia and the presentation of the material in a range of formats that can be utilised by any grower within the pistachio industry.
- Maintenance of an industry consultancy/advisor list and the delivery of current and up to date industry information to ensure a consistent message is being delivered to all Australian Pistachio growers.
- Maintenance and expansion of the linkages between the Australian Pistachio Industry and the research and growing communities in the USA, Turkey, Iran and China.
PIT Group reports:
Click on the link below to take you to the PIT Group meeting in the series. To return to the menu click on the ‘Top’ button at the bottom right of each report.
- September 2018 PIT Group/PGAI Symposium – Robinvale – Presentations
- July 2018 PIT Group Pistachio Pruning Demonstration – Waikerie
- June 2018 PIT Group Meeting, Waikerie and Irymple – Presentations
- September 2017 PIT Group/Symposium and Field Walk
- August 2017 PIT Group Field Day
- June 2017 PIT Group Meeting
- November 2016 PIT Group Meeting/Orchard Walk
- September 2016 PIT Group, Symposium and Field Walk
- November 2015 PIT Group Field Day and Field Walk
- September 2015 PIT Group Meeting and Symposium
- July 2015 PIT Group Meeting and Orchard/Nursery Walk
- May 2015 PIT Group Meeting and Orchard Walk
- September 2014 PIT Group Meeting and Symposium
- August 2014 PIT Group Meeting
- September 2013 Spring Symposium
- KEYNOTE PRESENTER: Bruce Lampinen, PhD
UC Cooperative Extension Presidential Chair for Tree Nut Soil Science and Plant Water Relations, Integrated Orchard Management Specialist, Department of Plant Sciences, University of California
DESCRIPTION OF CURRENT RESEARCH/OUTREACH ACTIVITIES:
Bruce has worked on canopy management in fruit and nut trees, influence of training systems on canopy structure and productivity, influence of water relations on tree development, influence of canopy size on soil temperature and food safety risk, remote and proximal sensing for estimating canopy cover, and development of an iPhone app for assessing canopy growth.
Bruce is responsible for overseeing almond and walnut research and extension programs statewide. This includes coordinating research activities among UC campus-based faculty, UC Cooperative Extension Specialists and county-based farm advisors. Bruce has also participated in educational outreach in China, Chile, Spain, Portugal, Italy, Australia, and New Zealand.
- Developing the relationship between canopy light interception and yield potential in nut tree crops including almond, walnut and pistachio.
- Developed an iPhone app for estimating canopy cover and productive potential in almond and walnut.
- Developing the relationship between irrigation practices, tree growth and nut yield and quality in almond, walnut and more recently pistachio
- Improving pruning and training systems in almond, walnut and pistachio
- Assessing impacts of painting and particle clay films on tree winter chilling and carbohydrate dynamics in nut tree crops
The second round of the PIT Group Winter sessions was held in Waikerie at Richard Isaacson’s property. A beautiful, sunny late Winter’s day saw about 30 growers attend the PIT Group. Andrew Bowring from Kyalaite Pistachios, Phil Hewett from CMV Farms and Dr Ben Thomas gave an extended demonstration on the winter pruning of young and mature trees.
Photo Gallery for the July 2018 PIT Group meeting.
The June 2018 round of PIT Groups were held at the Loxton Research Centre and Irymple Research Centre (AgVic). 28 growers and Industry people attended the meetings. Dr Ben Thomas spoke on the winter pruning of mature trees, Dr Cathy Taylor gave an excellent presentation on Carpophilus beetle and the devasation it has caused in the almond industry and the vital importance of orchard sanitation. Blair Grossman continued the theme with Carob Moth, Chris Joyce described the new APPC benchmarking data set and Craig Feutrill describe how to navigate the PGAI PIT Group website.
- Ben Thomas: Winter pruning of mature Pistachio trees – Link: P2018-06-27pruning-BT
- Dr Cathy Taylor: Carpophilus beetle, problems in Almonds and the need for orchard sanitation – Link: PIT presentation Carpophilus and carob moth_CT_BG
- Blair Grossman: Carob Moth damage in almonds and orchard sanitation – part of the presentation above.
- Chris Joyce: Understanding the new APPC benchmarking data. – Link: Benchmarking 2018_CJ
- Craig Feutrill: Navigating the PGAI PIT Group website – online demonstration
- Report for this Pit Group Meeting can be found here: June_2018_PITGroup_Report
Photo Gallery for the June 2018 PIT Group meeting.
The September 2017 PIT Group Meeting, due to time constraints was combined with the Annual PGAI Symposium. Approximately 45 growers and Industry people attended to meeting and field walk which demonstrated central/single leader pruning and new Croplands spray technology.
- Dr. Ben Robinson: Sirora leaf analysis (Presented by Dr. Zhang) – Link: Field Day leaf analysisJZBR
- Chris Joyce: Season update – Link: Industry information 2017 2017 Market Update CJa
- Abigail Hickman: Safe Ag Systems – WHS on the farm – Link: Managing safety in agriculture_Aug 2017_v3
- PGAI: Update of R&D activities going forward
- Dr Jianlu Zhang: (Research Scientist – PGAI), Update on research from 2016/17 – Link: Pistachio Industry Technical Development
- Craig Feutrill: IPM in Pistachios – Link: Pistachio IPM 2017 Symposium CF (2)
- Ben Thomas: Taking Care of Young Pistachio Trees – Link: BT PGAI presentation 2017
- David Crawford/Phil Hewett: Modified Central Leader Pruning – Link: Modified Central Leader Presentation
Photo Gallery for the September 2017 PIT Group/Symposium and Field Walk:
August 2017 PIT Group Field Day Robinvale: Link: 3rd August 2017 PITgroup Report
The 5th (August 2017) round of PIT groups meetings were held in incredibly wet conditions. The PIT Group meeting was held in a marquee set up at CMV Farms south of Robinvale. The spray demonstration meeting was intended to have a talk by Geoff Furness on calibration and spray application followed by a spray plant demonstration with fluorescent dye. After dinner – it was a late afternoon meeting – the 35 growers would assess the application with black lights The outside part of the meeting had to be cancelled as the torrential rain precluded any spraying. Geoff’s presentation however, highlighted the importance of spray coverage of all the bunches within the canopy with oil to achieved the desired results.
- Geoff Furness: The Importance of Coverage when Canopy Spraying in Pistachios – Link: Canopy Spraying – Geoff Furness
Photo Gallery for the August 2017 PIT Group Field Day:
June 2017 PIT Group Meeting: Link: June 2017 PITgroup Report
The 4th (June 2017) round of PIT groups meetings were held in better conditions than the last two meetings. The meeting was a video conference featuring Bob Beede from California. 32 growers from all regions attended the meeting.
Farm Advisor Emeritus: Bob Beede has lived and worked in the San Joaquin Valley of California his whole career. He earned BS and MS degrees focusing on Plant Science, Agrarian Studies, and Postharvest Physiology at the University of California (UC) at Davis. For 35 years Bob worked as a UC Cooperative Extension Farm Advisor working out of Kings County. Although he is now retired, Bob continues to advise on a broad range of topics including pest management, entomology, plant pathology, cultural practices, plant physiology, herbicides, irrigation practices, soils, and water. His goals are to extend knowledge to farmers and agriculturalists through educational programs, publications such as APG eNews, farm calls, and to perform research related to his areas of expertise.
- Chris Joyce: 2017 Season Report – Link: Chris Joyce Presentation1
- Chris Joyce: Insect and Fungal programs
- Dr Jianlu Zhang: Winter Oil Trials – Link: Review of the winter oil and chill as
- Dr Jianlu Zhang: Winter Chill – early predictions – Link above
- Bob Beede: USA Pistachio Industry and Short Course – Links: Beede Short Course – Pruning Beede Pruning Presentation 2
- Mark Heyward: Phytech – Link: Phytech Pistachio Conference Presentation
Photo Gallery for June 2017 PIT Group Meeting:
November 2016 PIT Group Meeting/Orchard Walk: Link: PIT Groups_November_2016 – report
The 5th round of PITgroup meeting occurred in November 2016 in weather much more conducive the meeting held the same time last year. 21 growers attended the two meetings – the first on Thursday November the 3rd at the Nangiloc Football Clubroom then onto Rodney Hands property for an orchard walk and demonstration of Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAV) and the second meeting at Bob Hodgson’s property the following day Friday the 4th, at Renmark. I thank all the growers who took the time to attend these presentations and orchard walks. I also sincerely thank hosts’ Bob Hodgson and Rodney Hand for allowing the use of their properties for the meetings or orchard walks.
- Phil Lyons: The Use of Drones to Assist Farming Decisions (Falcon UAV Australia) – Link: Phil Lyons UAV Aerial Imaging
- Darren Cribbes: Orchard Sanitation (Soil and Crop Agronomy, ConNexus Global) – Link:Darren Cribbes – Orchard Floor Hygiene and Soil Health
- Chris Joyce: Chill Problems 2016 – Link: Chris Joyce – Update on Chil PIT Presentation – November 2016
Photo Gallery for November 2016 PIT Group Meeting and Orchard Walk:
Video of Drone at Nangiloc Pistachio Property – Falcon UAV Australia
- Chris Joyce: 2016 Season Report – Link: 2016 Season CJ
- Dr Jianlu Zhang: The Importance of Potassium in Pistachio Crops – Link: Jianlu_K Review
- Ben Thomas: Understanding Soil Analysis – Link: BT PGAI presentation 2016
- Dr Jianlu Zhang: Update on research from 2015/16 – Link: Jianlu_FieldDay
Photo Gallery for 2016 PIT Group Meeting and PGAI Symposium
The 4th round of independent PITgroup meetings occurred in November 2015 in weather much more conducive than the July meetings – in fact you could say it was hot! 28 growers attended the two meetings – the first at Bob Hodgson’s property at Renmark on Tuesday 17th November and the combined Sunraysia/Swan Hill meeting at the Kyalite Pub, on Wednesday 18th November prior to an orchard walk at Kyalite Pistachios. I thank all the growers who took the time to attend these presentations and orchard walks, particularly considering the heat in the orchards! I also sincerely thank hosts’ Bob Hodgson and Chris Joyce for allowing the use of their properties for the meetings or orchard walks
- Ian Atkinson: Managing Water Availability During Drought Conditions – Link: Managing irrigation during times of shortage
- Ben Harrison: 2015 California Trip Reflections – Link: Pistachio PIT Presentation
- Craig Feutrill: PGAI Website Updates – Link: Orchard Systems Puzzle
Photo Gallery for November 2015 PIT Group Meetings
- Chris Joyce: 2015 Season Review of Pistachio Production – Link: 2015 Season Review – Chris Joyce
- Dr Ben Robinson: What have We Learned in 25 Years of Pistachio Production? – Link: Ben Robinson presentation 2015 Field Day
- Dr Jianlu Zhang: Update on research from 2014/15 – Link: FieldDay JZ
- Ben Thomas: Practical Nutrition Management for Pistachios – Link: BT PGAI presentation 2015
- Trevor Slugget: Pistachio, Project Planning, Irrigation Systems and Management – Link: Pistachio Project Planning and Irrigation Design and Management 2015
- Jarrad (Peats Soils): Bring Your Soil to Life – Link: Jarrad Pistachio presentation_Sept 2015 (2)
Photo Gallery for September 2015 PIT Group Meeting and PGAI Symposium
No Photos – if you have any and would like them displayed, please send them to Trevor or Craig.
July 2015 PIT Group Meeting and Orchard/Nursery Walk – Link: PIT Groups – July 2015 – report
The July 2015 round of PIT groups meetings on grower properties held in cold, blustery
conditions had 28 growers braving the conditions to attend the two meetings – the first at Jay
Ruediger’s property at Renmark on Monday 13th July and the combined Sunraysia/Swan Hill
meeting at the Binjara Nursery at Euston courtesy of the owner Justin Turner, on Tuesday
15th July. I thank all the growers who took the time to attend these presentations and
orchard walks, particularly considering the weather! I also sincerely thank hosts’ Jay
Ruediger and JustinTurner for allowing the use of their properties for the meetings.
- Chris Joyce: Pistachio Chill Requirements – Link: July 2015 Chill presentation
- Barbara Hall: BUDMON, ONFIT and their use for Pistachio Disease Monitoring – Link: pistachio BUDMON 2015b
- Dr Prue McMichael: Fungicides and Options for Control (Michailides Presentation) – Link: Themis_Michailides_Presentation
Dr Themis Michiailides Fungal Diseases Video:
Photo Gallery for the July 2015 PIT Group Meeting and Orchard/Nursery Walk
May 2015 PIT Group Meeting and Orchard Walk – Link: PIT Groups – May 2015 – report
The May 2015 round of PIT groups meetings on grower properties was a definite success with 40 growers attending the three meetings – one at Martin Simpfendorfer’s property at Renmark on Wednesday 13th May, the next at Rodney Hand’s property at Colignan on Thursday 14th May and the last at Colin and Lois Caelli’s property at Vinifera on Friday 15th of May. I thank all the growers who took the time to attend these presentations and orchard walks.
- Chris Joyce: 2015 Pistachio Crop Progress Report – Link: PIT Group May 2015 presentation CJ
- Dr Jianlu Zhang: Winter Pruning of Pistachio and Orchard Sanitation – Link:
- Craig Feutrill: PGAI Pistachio Information and Technology Groups – Link: PGAI_Mildura_Feb_15a_CF
Photo Gallery for the May 2015 PIT Group Meeting and Orchard Walk
- Dr Jianlu Zhang: Update on research from 2013/14 – Link: Pistachio Research presentation – September 2014
- Trevor Ranford: Pistachio Farm Biosecurity – Link: Pistachio Biosecurity – Sept 2014
- Chris Joyce: 2014 Pistachio Chill Presentation Report – Link: 2014 Chill presentation
- Geoff Furness: The Importance of Pistachio Tree Spray Coverage – Link: PGAI Conference – Geoff Furness
- Dr Steve Sykes: The Origins of the Australian Pistachio Industry – Link: Sykes PGAI Symp 2014
- Dr Jianlu Zhang: Disease Management in Australian Pistachio Orchards – Link: Disease Management In Australian Pistachio Orchards
- Dr Louise Ferguson: Pistachio Tree Botany and Physiology – Link: MIldura_Botany and Physiology Nov
- Dr Louise Ferguson: Pistachios in Australia – Link: Renmark_Ferguson_2014_08_12
- Dr Louise Ferguson: Clonal UCBI Rootstock Problem – Link: UCBI_Clonal _2014_04_17
- Bob Klein: Food Safety Challenges Facing the Pistachio Industry (USA) – Link: Food Safety
- Chris Joyce: 2013 Pistachio Crop Progress Report – Link: Market Update CJ (2)
- Dr Jianlu Zhang: Update on research from 2012/13 – Link: RFO FieldDay Report – September 2013
- Chris Lee: Pistachio Yields and Returns for the 2013 Season – Link: Yields and Returns presentation – September 2013
- Dr Themis Michailides: Controls of Aflatoxins in Pistachio Trees – Link: Aflatoxin- Pistachio Day Jan 2013 (Australia-3)
- Dr Themis Michailides: Foliar and Fruit Diseases in Pistachio Trees – Link: Foliar and Fruit Diseases of Pistachios – 74186
- Dr Themis Michailides: Branch, Foliar and Fruit Fungal Diseases in Pistachio Trees – Link: Fungal Pistachio Diseases Australia-1