Researcher Spotlights

Oleg Daugovish

Evalutaing blackberries (1)

Oleg Daugovish is a Strawberry and Vegetable Crop Advisor in Ventura County. He conducts research at Hansen REC.

What led you to become a strawberry and vegetable crop advisor?

Interest in working in applied research that addresses the issues of the production industry. The challenges and opportunities of working with a variety of people and issues, and learning and sharing in the process.  Strawberry and veg crops position was open and I got selected for it and never looked back for 20+ years.

ASD at hansen - plants without ASD (1)
ASD at hansen - plants (1)

What brought your work to Hansen REC?

Proximity to our office and ability to do small controlled studies that would be difficult to conduct in grower fields. At that time placing research plots at Hansen was rather inexpensive or free and it certainly was an attractive place to test things, make mistakes and discoveries before scaling up for commercial settings.

ASD at hansen (1)

What do you hope to learn from your research at Hansen REC?

This year (we are leasing back land to finish ongoing projects at Hansen) we are looking at how recently developed cultivars of strawberry respond to a variable density of soil-borne pathogens (we inoculate soil before planting) – this can show what cultivars growers can use depending on their pathogen species and levels in soil, and what to expect.  We have also been working and have a current project assessing carbon sources (by-products of grain industry) mixed in soil for anaerobic soil disinfestation (ASD) – a 3-4 week fermentation period where carbon source is used to change the physical, chemical, and microbiological composition of soil with the idea to suppress soil pathogens and weeds and improve fruit production of strawberry planted after beds are aerated.

What is your favorite part about conducting your research at Hansen REC?

Working, more or less on my own schedule and ability to do things that can otherwise compromise commercial production of high-value crops, which is important for learning

What is your favorite crop to work with and why?

As much as I like berry crops (we had studies focused on strawberry, blackberry, and raspberry at Hansen), trials in veg crops such as celery or lettuce are a lot easier and do not require long season management and continuous harvesting since they are harvested once, allowing to complete trials a lot faster.

25g Prime-Ark45 blackberry on hand (1)