A February Field Day? Love the Veggies!

My friends fall into two lots — those who hear the word field day and think of something that happens in the spring to get kids playing outside in a series of challenges from soccer drills to softball and those who are ready to look at acres of food, feed, fiber sources and hear what makes them different from the plant immediately next to them.

I’ve been to both kinds of field days and bet some of my friends have, but a February field day?  I went to my first while in The Philippines.  And as I sent some notes back to family & close friends, there were jokes about my being a farm geek and several self-identified they’d find it of great interest too.

I love field days! I love them so much I was psyched to have a chance to go to one on vacation. Granted, there is something extra special about someone else’s event knowing you don’t have to work…  And at a certain point, the tropical heat got to me so I didn’t make it the whole way around…  NEVERTHELESS, it was an awesome experience!

Some of the things that I totally enjoyed?

  • While I’ve seen vegetable plots & heard presentations during field days, this was the first dedicated veggie field day I had attended.
  • The Allied folks doing the breeding & testing were there as were several seed company partners that Allied works with from other areas of Asia & the world.  I was lucky enough to get to visit with many of them in the couple of days we were celebrating.  Great folks across the board!
  • Allied breeders are working on vegetables that are highly productive in the Philippines
  • There are some local differences in taste as well that breeders are working with.
  • Nutritional benefits are considered in the breeding process as well.

Since I’d never been to a field day that was solely devoted to veggies, I learned an incredible amount! Lots of crops to see!  As we drove up, I had to ask about the plants that were staked & vined to provide a canopy, like I’ve seen at some vineyards.  It was bittergourd.  A type of gourd/squash that people here enjoy.  Bittergourds are a type of produce that Filipinos like — they also prefer a distinctive taste in okra and pumpkin.  (By the way, I did bring a Fighting Okra baseball cap for Willy’s son Mark.)

Because of the production challenges in the tropics, in-plant virus and disease resistance are important characteristics as well.  I was so busy taking photos in the crops that I forgot to snag video out there.  But I hope this short video gives you a feel for it the place & day.  Then, I’m adding the photo gallery too!  Lots of visuals on this one!

This is the fourth in a series of posts on Phillipines ag info picked up during a recent vacation.

About Janice Person

I'm Janice & this blog is about my passions -- photography, travel, agriculture & whatever else comes to mind. Putting all those things together is intriguing to me…. I can spend a lot of time soaking it up! It's almost always a colorful adventure!

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10 Responses to A February Field Day? Love the Veggies!

  1. Rommel Lopez April 6, 2010 at 12:23 am #

    Hi Janice,

    Wonderful blog. Thanks for the kind words. We are happy you had a great time here in the Philippines. We hope to see you again.

    By the way, the barbecue night was truly a blast!

    • Janice April 6, 2010 at 11:46 am #

      Thanks Rommel! I had a great time and learned so much. And now, I can’t hear Guantamera without thinking about being on the patio! I have added some videos to my YouTube from the anniversary party. Still Need to get a few up from the BBQ! Please tell the Allied crew hello for me.

      • Rommel Lopez April 7, 2010 at 1:49 am #

        Will do. By the way, we are producing our next issue of the newsletter. Can I use your blog entry as an article featuring our Field Day?

        I love your video of the girls with the flags. The sight of Gilbert shooting the girls is a classic! I can think of a million things going through his mind while he is taking their photos. :)

  2. Janice April 7, 2010 at 8:09 am #

    Sure! Feel free to pick out whatever you like. And the photos are fairly high res when you click on them.

Trackbacks/Pingbacks

  1. How many kinds of rice do you know? « Ag – its not just a job, it's an adventure! - March 26, 2010

    [...] The fourth post was about veggies in the field we toured. [...]

  2. How many kinds of rice do you know? « Ag – its not just a job, it's an adventure! - March 26, 2010

    [...] The fourth post was about veggies in the field we toured. [...]

  3. World Food Day — Thoughts from Someone with a Full Belly « ag – a colorful adventure for this city girl - October 16, 2010

    [...] local companies are breeding crops like the bitter gourd in The Philippines are on that track (see past post) and there are also companies like my employer Monsanto working globally (here’s an overview [...]

  4. Lessons Learned in 2010 & Looking Forward to 2011 | ag – a colorful adventure - December 31, 2010

    [...] Incredible vacation in The Philippines. What a set of memories to relive! Just the thought of it makes me crave a mango shake! I had such an incredible time seeing the sights and getting to know the people there. And to do all that with my dear friends and expert guide Albert & Geeta… well, that will never be replicated. But it will be followed up by more travel overseas! (Since I saw some agricultural sights, there are some blog posts if you want to get caught up - farm geek while on vacation, public plant breeding, BBoy getting me a coconut, central plains of The Philippines andveggie field day). [...]

  5. Lessons Learned in 2010 & Looking Forward to 2011 | A Colorful Adventure - March 16, 2012

    [...] Incredible vacation in The Philippines. What a set of memories to relive! Just the thought of it makes me crave a mango shake! I had such an incredible time seeing the sights and getting to know the people there. And to do all that with my dear friends and expert guide Albert & Geeta… well, that will never be replicated. But it will be followed up by more travel overseas! (Since I saw some agricultural sights, there are some blog posts if you want to get caught up - farm geek while on vacation, public plant breeding, BBoy getting me a coconut, central plains of The Philippines andveggie field day). [...]

  6. World Food Day -- Thoughts from Someone with a Full Belly - a colorful adventure - October 6, 2013

    […] local companies are breeding crops like the bitter gourd in The Philippines are on that track (see past post) and there are also companies like my employer Monsanto working globally (here’s an overview […]

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