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Enrollment Up, Vogel Building, Benaroya Hall, IPM Award

Posted by | September 12, 2007

It’s a Fact

Enrollment is up across the entire WSU system. With a record number of freshman arriving in Pullman this August, the College of Agricultural, Human and Natural Resource Sciences has seen a 22 percent increase in the number of enrolled students in its majors.

On Solid Ground is a weekly, electronic newsletter for the friends and stakeholders of the Washington State University College of Agricultural, Human, and Natural Resource Sciences (CAHNRS), WSU Extension and the WSU Agricultural Research Center.

You’re Invited to the Vogel Building Naming Ceremony

WSU’s plant biosciences building officially will be named the Orville A. Vogel Plant Biosciences Building at a public ceremony scheduled for 3 p.m., Saturday, Sept. 15, inside the northwest entrance.

The $39 million building, completed in 2005, houses the research programs of scientists from four departments in CAHNRS and the USDA-Agricultural Research Service as well as the plant transformation core laboratory of the Center for Integrated Biotechnology.

Scheduled speakers include WSU President Elson S. Floyd; Harold Cochran, Walla Walla, a member of the WSU Board of Regents; Bernardo; Steve Jones, WSU wheat breeder; and Robert Allan, retired USDA-ARS wheat geneticist.

Vogel Building

The Vogel Plant Biosciences Building is located at the corner of Wilson Road and Stadium Way. Photo by Dennis Brown.

WSU at Benaroya Hall and the Music of Partnership

Nearly 400 WSU alumni, friends, faculty and staff attended “WSU at Benaroya Hall: In Concert with Communities” on Thursday in Seattle. Special guests included WSU President Elson S. Floyd, Ph.D., as well as members of the state Legislature.

More than 50 WSU faculty members participated, and each brought a community partner—an agricultural producer, non-profit or government agency representative, or small business owner who collaborates with WSU. Displays at the event showcased the vital role that WSU plays in developing our economy, sustaining our natural resources, and building strong communities.

A CAHNRS and WSU Extension news team was on hand, conducting videotaped interviews. We’ll soon be posting those videos on a Web site near you, so watch this space for the link. And, too, we’re already planning next year’s event, which has become an annual “WSU in Seattle Week” tradition, so we’ll keep you posted as plans develop. In the mean time, your comments and suggestions are welcome—just click reply and let us know what you thought of “WSU at Benaroya Hall: In Concert with Communities.”

For more upcoming alumni events, please visit:

WSU-Industry Team Win IPM Award

A team of WSU researchers and their wine-industry collaborators are the winners of the 2007 Integrated Pest Management Team Award. The award is given each year to the team that successfully implements an IPM solution to an agricultural pest problem. The Pacific Northwest Vineyard IPM team, led by entomologist Doug Walsh, and based at WSU’s Irrigated Agriculture Research and Extension Center in Prosser, devised an innovative technique that virtually eliminated cutworm bud damage on grapevines.

The vineyard solution saves growers about $5.5 million a year and has resulted in an 84 percent reduction in pesticide use.

Previously difficult to control, Walsh said that cutworm “wakes up hungry in the spring” and immediately sets out to devour the buds where grape clusters form. Before Walsh and his team approached the problem, treatment consisted of an organophosphate insecticide “with negative environmental consequences,” Walsh said. The organophosphate insecticide also killed beneficial insects.

“The growers started using this solution,” said Walsh “and it was a real cost savings to them. Growers were using very little insecticide and getting very good control. The grower response within two years was universal. At this point I think every grower around here has adopted this practice in some form.”

In addition to Walsh, the team was composed of WSU researchers Holly Ferguson, Ron Wight, Tim Waters and Sally O’Neal Coastes. Industry collaborators were Len Welch of Valent USA, an agrochemical company, Leif Olsen of Olsen Wine Estates, Kevin Corliss of Chateau Ste. Michelle Wine Estates, and Sally Halstead of the EPA.

This is the second IPM Team Award for WSU in as many years. For more information, please visit:

WSU entomologist Doug Walsh describing his team’s winning IPM effort in a vineyard in Prosser. Photo by Brian Clark.