The Dirt: A Blog.

Could Strike be Part of the Solution for Potato Wart?

Potato Wart was discovered in the United States in Pennsylvania in 1918, and then later in Maryland and West Virginia. It was eradicated in 1994 and has not been detected since. But for our neighbors to the north and around the world, certain regions wrestle and worry about this disease that can lead to the destruction […]

Meet Joy Youwakim, an Agroecology Scientist Researching Soil’s DNA

Last month we had the pleasure of hosting Joy Youwakim, an agroecology scientist at Biome Makers, at our Potato Expo booth. If you haven’t heard of Biome Makers, they are an independent, third-party genomics company that offers a proprietary DNA-sequencing program that uses the world’s largest taxonomic database of over 10 million microorganisms. Using this […]

Have you considered the biological impact of your soil fumigation program?

In a recent grower meeting, the grower was expressing frustration at the diminishing returns he was experiencing with his current soil health regimen. One of our sales representatives asked the grower if he had considered the biological impact of his soil fumigation program. The grower confessed that he had not. That led to our latest […]

Are potatoes following in strawberries footsteps?

In a recent article published in SpudSmart, I drew parallels between where we are in the potato industry today compared to where California’s strawberry industry was in the 1950s. Strawberries are very sensitive to verticillium – same as potatoes. With limited means to fight the disease, strawberry growers tried to outrun verticillium but ultimately had […]

STRIKE is Fast Becoming the Potato Industry’s Worst-Kept Secret

I recently had three of my articles get published on Spud Smart.  You can access the articles below on the Spud Smart website. Or, you can stay here and read the very latest article below. June’s Article “Am I Willing to Share? Heck No, It’s My Competitive Advantage” July’s Article Incremental Yield Improvement Is Good, But […]

Does Soil Fumigation Have a Place in Regenerative Agriculture?

SpudSmart recently published another of my articles titled, “Does Soil Fumigation Have a Place in Regenerative Agriculture?” You can access the article here: Does Soil Fumigation Have a Place in Regenerative Agriculture? ( or read on! DOES SOIL FUMIGATION HAVE A PLACE IN REGENERATIVE AGRICULTURE? Over the past handful of months, I’ve attended a whole pile of […]

Published in SpudSmart: Reduced Irrigation Yet More Yield and Better-quality Potatoes

In case you missed it, SpudSmart recently published my article titled, “Reduced Irrigation Yet More Yield and Better-quality Potatoes”. You can access the article here: or read on! REDUCED IRRIGATION YET MORE YIELD AND BETTER-QUALITY POTATOES My favorite part of my job is learning from producers who speak personally about real challenges and real opportunities in […]

Happy National Ag Day

Happy National Ag Day! We’re proudly celebrating this year’s National Ag Day. National Ag Day recognizes and celebrates the abundance provided by American agriculture. Farmers are innovators committed to feeding us all and leaving a healthy world for future generations. The family of TriCal Group companies celebrate our farmers and are proud to be helping […]