Liz Maynard

Clinical Engagement Assistant Professor of Horticulture
Department of Horticulture and Landscape Architecture
Liz Maynard's website

103 articles by this author

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Purdue Extension publication PPP-110 ‘Options for Dealing with a Pesticide Drift Incident’ describes causes and effects of pesticide drift. It discusses actions a vegetable farmer (or anyone) might take if they suspect that herbicide drift may have injured their crop. The first step suggested is to find out what caused the symptoms. The publication explains that Purdue Extension educators can help in determining the cause of symptoms, but are not pesticide drift investigators. The Office of the Indiana State Chemist (OISC) investigates pesticide drift complaints. What happens once a complaint is filed is outlined step-by-step. There is also a list of the kind of information it is helpful to collect as soon as a problem is noticed. To order a free, single copy of the publication, call the Education Store at 765-494-6795. It may also be downloaded as a pdf at

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Purdue University is pleased to offer Indiana fruit and vegetable farmers a farm walk-through with a private food safety consultant. This opportunity is open to any farm that sells fresh produce and has attended a produce safety educational program. A consultant paid by Purdue will visit your farm to walk through and address your specific farm and packinghouse food safety questions. Growers who participated in the consulting program in 2015 reported it was very helpful. Funds for the consulting come from a grant from the Indiana State Department of Agriculture through the USDA Specialty Crops Block Grant Program. The grant also includes funds for audit cost-sharing for Indiana fruit and vegetable growers who receive passing scores on their third party food safety audits. The audit cost-share program will reimburse at least 40% of the cost of a third party food safety audit, up to a maximum reimbursement of $750 per farm.[Read More…]

Fruit and vegetable farmers, wholesale produce buyers, agency personnel, and others are invited to attend a Community Meeting to discuss the potential development of an Indiana Fresh Produce Food Safety Audit Service. This community event is a critical component of a study being conducted by New Venture Advisors and Liz Maynard to assess whether or not an Indiana Food Safety Audit Service should be developed and, if so, how it should be structured. This community meeting will be an opportunity for us to hear from fruit and vegetable farmers who would want to utilize an Indiana Audit Service and are interested in helping to shape the concept. We are also seeking ideas and feedback from wholesale produce buyers, members of state agencies and other stakeholders in Indiana. When: Wednesday, March 23, 2016, 1:00 PM – 5:00 PM Eastern Time Location: Third Floor, Discovery Hall, Indiana State Fairgrounds, Indianapolis RSVP by Friday March 18th: Liz Maynard,[Read More…]

​Beginning Farmer Tour. Saturday, November 7, 2015. 9:00 A.M. – Noon CST. Perkins Good Earth Farm, DeMotte, IN. Breakfast, networking session, lunch, tour. Soil health, cover crops, vegetable and high tunnel production. Sponsored by Purdue Extension and Local Growers Guild. For more information and to register contact the Purdue Extension Education Store at or 888-EXT-INFO. Southwest Indiana Melon and Vegetable Growers Association Technical Meeting and Variety Trial Showcase. Thursday, Dec. 3, 2015. 6:00 P.M. dinner, 7:00 P.M. Variety Trial Showcase. SWPAC, 4369 N. Purdue Rd., Vincennes, IN. RSVP by November 20 by phone 812-886-0198 or email Illiana Vegetable Growers Symposium. Tuesday, January 5, 2016. 8:00 A.M. – 4:00 P.M. CST. Teibel’s Restaurant, Schererville, IN. Registration and program available in early December. Contact Liz Maynard, 219-548-3674 or Indiana Horticultural Congress. January 19-21, 2016. Wyndham Indianapolis West, Indianapolis, IN. Contact Lori Jolly-Brown, 765-494-1296 or Midwest Women in[Read More…]

This is the final issue of the Vegetable Crops Hotline for 2015. Now is the time for subscribers who receive a paper copy in the mail to renew. A renewal form is included with this issue. Email subscribers will remain on the subscription list as long as the email address works. IVGA members will have their Veg Crops Hotline subscription renewed when they renew IVGA membership (form available here) and do not have to send in a separate renewal form for the newsletter. Your feedback about the newsletter: what was useful, what wasn’t, whether the online version was easy to use, etc., is helpful to us. Don’t hesitate to send me a note ( or 600 Vale Park Rd. Valparaiso, IN 46383), or visit to submit comments online. Thank you!

​There is still time to submit a proposal to this grant program. The 2016 Farmer Rancher Grant Program of NCR SARE offers grants for farmer-initiated projects of up to $7,500 for individuals, $15,000 for partners, and $22,500 for groups. Grant applications are due in the NCR SARE office on Thursday, December 3, 2015. To learn more about the grants and download a grant application, visit To receive a hard copy of the application, call NCR-SARE at 612-626-3113. Not sure how to get started? Purdue Extension’s October 7 webinar about how to write a grant was recorded and is available at’s+Personal+Room-20151007+1401-1_42105557/0_3nhrcqvc.  If you have additional questions about this grant program, please contact Roy Ballard, Purdue Extension Educator for Hancock County and Indiana SARE State Coordinator at 317-462-1113 or by e-mail at

​The Southwest Indiana Melon and Vegetable Growers Association will hold their technical meeting and variety trial showcase on Thursday, December 3rd at the Southwest Purdue Ag Center, 4369 N. Purdue Road, Vincennes, IN. The meeting will start at 6:00 P.M., dinner will be served. At approximately 7:00 P.M., the variety trial discussion will begin. Any grower interested in becoming a member is invited to attend. Membership dues are $15 per year and can be paid at the meeting. If you have questions or want to RSVP, please contact Barb Joyner or Dan Egel at 812-886-0198 or email RSVP are due by November 20th.

Photo of Dr. Amanda Deering

​Amanda Deering started her Extension/Research appointment July 1, 2015 in a new role as a Clinical Assistant Professor in fresh produce food safety. Amanda grew up on a farm in a small farming community located in the “thumb” of Michigan and joined the Food Science department in the fall of 2013 as a Research Assistant Professor. Amanda earned her bachelor’s degree in biology and master’s degree in plant biology from Central Michigan University. She completed her Ph.D. at Purdue University in food microbiology and food safety specializing in fresh produce food safety. Her research focuses on examining internalization of human pathogenic bacteria in plants, as well as routes of contamination that can contribute to plants harboring pathogenic bacteria. Amanda works closely with industry to develop and test novel sanitization treatments that can be used for fresh produce. She also has been involved in research and Extension activities related to preventing foodborne illness associated[Read More…]

Solid green stems on fully mature pumpkins make a quality jack-o-lantern. (Photo by Liz Maynard)

​Pumpkin season is here. Keeping up with best management practices through harvest and storage will help the year wrap up on a good note. The steps below are a reminder of actions that can make a difference. Handle fruit as little as possible. Harvest fully orange and healthy pumpkins. Half-orange pumpkins may turn orange but quality and storage life will be reduced. Use a sharp knife or loppers to cut pumpkins from the vine. Leave stems long enough for an attractive product. Carry the pumpkin like a ball, not by the stem, or ‘handle.’ Brush off soil that sticks to the pumpkin. If pumpkins are washed, include a labeled sanitizer in the wash water and dry pumpkins before storage. Place pumpkins carefully in crates, bins, or trucks, so that the stem of one pumpkin doesn’t damage the rind of another. Watch for and avoid (or pad) sharp edges that could[Read More…]

​Do you have an idea that might help your farm stay in business for the long run? Be a better place to work or contribute more to the community? Conserve or improve natural resources like soil and water? Reduce use of fossil fuels? The North Central Region Sustainable Agriculture Research and Education program (NCR SARE) of the USDA wants to fund ideas like these and others to make agriculture more sustainable – economically, socially, and environmentally. The 2016 Farmer Rancher Grant Program of NCR SARE offers grants for farmer-initiated projects of up to $7,500 for individuals, $15,000 for partners, and $22,500 for groups. Grant applications are due in the NCR SARE office on Thursday, December 3, 2015. To learn more about the grants and download a grant application, visit To receive a hard copy of the application NCR-SARE, at 612-626-3113. NCR SARE also offers Partnership Grants to fund on-farm[Read More…]