Noel Garcia: Critical Growth Stages for Optimum Production

Noel Garcia

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Every crop has distinct growth stages during the season. It is at these stages that nutritional requirements can significantly change. The number of stages vary tremendously with the kind of crop – single-fruiting crops such as corn have fewer stages while continuous-fruiting crops such as melons have them as often as every week, and with the grasses, only once a cutting. Most farms today grow crops that yield nowhere close to their genetic potential. Plant sap analysis at the critical stages determines the nutritional status of the crop so that corrective measures can be taken using foliar feeding before the crop suffers loss in yield and quality. The speaker will cover a variety of crops and their key stages as well as common nutritional shortages exhibited during critical stages of the plants’ physiology.

Noel Garcia, CCA, joined Texas Plant & Soil Lab in 1991; he now serves as vice-president, operations and technical director. He is a Certified Crop Advisor under the American Society of Agronomy. His career started at the USDA-ARS, developing imagery acquisition software involving video and satellite images, image processing and geographical information systems. He was recruited by E.K. Chandler, the lab’s previous owner, to write computer programs to manage and report raw laboratory data. Garcia also conducted field trials on various pop-up fertilizers, humic/fulvic acids, hormones and other adjuvants with a variety of crops. He consults widely with farmers internationally on a wide variety of crops and on conventional, sustainable and organic operations.

Recorded at the 2014 Acres U.S.A. Conference, Columbus, Ohio, Saturday, December 6, 2014.

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