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2020 Hemp Virtual Field Day

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Welcome to the 2020 Hemp Virtual field day! Thank you for viewing our research updates. Below are YouTube links to video presentations and field demonstrations from faculty, staff, and graduate students in the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences as well as updates from the N.C. Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services. Our goal with this virtual field day is to give you a brief idea of the breadth of research activities pertaining to hemp at the university. You may view individual recordings or select the “Welcome and Introduction” to begin the playlist.

As research results become available we will post all of our findings on this web portal, so be sure to check back periodically. If you have any questions feel free to contact us at

We hope you and your family are safe and we look forward to seeing you in the field in 2021!

Welcome and Introduction

Floral Hemp Transplant Date by Density Study

Hemp is a short-day plant and will grow vegetatively until it receives less than approximately 12 hours of sunlight. Consequently, planting earlier in the season rather than later may lead to larger plants/increased biomass production. Studies conducted in Salisbury, Jackson Springs, and Kinston, NC were established to investigate the effects of planting date (between the end of May and beginning of July) and plant spacing (3′, 4′, 5′, and 6′ between plants).

Floral Hemp Harvest Date Trials

Trials were initiated in Kinston and Salisbury, NC to investigate the floral maturation process over a 12-week period starting at flower initiation. Cultivars investigated in this trial are Baox, Cherrywine, Sweeten, First Light 58, First Light 70, and TJs. We hope to develop a better understanding of the dynamics of CBD, THC, and biomass production over time and provide more concrete harvest timing recommendations.

Floral Hemp Cultivar Trials

NC State University continues to screen floral hemp cultivars across the state. This year’s trials were conducted in the Coastal Plain, Piedmont, and Mountains (see Western North Carolina Floral Hemp Variety Evaluations) with 11 cultivars. Total biomass, plant dimensions at harvest, and cannabinoid profile data will be collected from these trials. The 11 cultivars investigated are: Baox, Cherrywine, Cherry Citrus, First Light 58, TJs, Elektra, Matterhorn, Berry Blossom, Cherry Wine x Wulf, Sweeten, and Early Girl.

Western North Carolina Floral Hemp Variety/Strain Evaluations

Margaret Bloomquist and Jeanine Davis-Department of Horticultural Science

For the past several years, we have collaborated with our colleagues in the Department of Crop and Soil Sciences to conduct floral hemp variety/strain trials across the state. In this video, research associate Margaret Bloomquist describes the 2020 trial of 11 varieties/strains that is being conducted on a hemp farm in western North Carolina.

Floral Hemp Nitrogen and Potassium Fertilizer Rates

There are currently no agronomic recommendations for fertilizer application rates for floral hemp. Various nitrogen and potassium fertilizer rates were evaluated in four different locations across North Carolina to determine the effects on final yield and quality parameters, as well as on growth throughout the season. At three out of four locations in 2019 increasing the nitrogen rate increased the dry weight yield. This study is being replicated currently (2020).

Floral Hemp Foliar Nutrient Analysis

Foliar nutrient analysis is an excellent tool to monitor in‐season fertility and to identify nutrient imbalances. A state-wide survey is being conducted to fine-tune existing nutrient survey ranges tailored to North Carolina production. Most recently mature leaf (MRML) samples are being collected from commercial farms by NCDA&CS regional agronomists and NC State Extension agents, from N.C. A&T State University research plots, and from NC State University variety trials. Analysis of data will fine-tune nutrient sufficiency ranges and determine if growth stage, variety, production practices, fertility practices, and/or environment affect plant tissue analysis interpretations.

North Carolina Industrial Hemp Update 2020

Update From Paul Adams, Industrial Hemp Program Manager at NCDA&CS

The future of industrial hemp cultivation, and the industry at large, is uncertain at this time. Prices for hemp have dropped precipitously but interest and licensed greenhouse sq. ft. continue to rise. Rule changes brought about by the 2018 farm bill and USDA’s interim final rule will likely be a hardship for existing and new farmers.

2020 Certification Status of Hemp Seed and Clones

Hemp seed has been readily available since the introduction of the hemp pilot program; however, the quality and genetics behind that seed have been inconsistent and unpredictable at times. In all other crops, a variety offered for sale is almost guaranteed to be distinct, uniform, and stable. Is this the case for hemp seed? If not, why is this so and what should you do about it? Dr. Foote makes the case for purchasing certified seed and predicts the future direction of our hemp breeding programs.

2020 Hemp Law Update by Dr. Marne Coit

The North Carolina Industrial Hemp Pilot Program will likely be ending at the end of October 2020. This means a change in licensing and compliance testing. This presentation by Dr. Marne Coit provides information about what growers can expect with this transition.

Field Management of Floral Hemp in Western North Carolina

Margaret Bloomquist and Jeanine Davis-Department of Horticultural Science

Research associate, Margaret Bloomquist, describes some of the studies we have conducted over the past few years on plant spacing and mulch and some of what we’ve learned about insects and disease, weed management, fertility, sample collection, harvest, and drying.

Industrial Hemp Foliar Disease Management

Hemp foliar diseases have the potential to limit quality and yield of the crop when pressure is severe. In this presentation, foliar fungicides and foliar disease management with fungicides and strain selection are discussed in this presentation.

On-Farm Hemp Drying Observations and Preliminary Drying Studies Results

Industrial hemp drying information utilizing flue-cured tobacco bulk curing barns was collected at multiple on-farm locations during the 2019 season. Performance information related to material throughput, drying times, and energy usage was collected. The effect of drying temperature on cannabinoid concentrations was also evaluated utilizing electric heated drying chambers at the Central Crops Research Station.

Reviewed by Jeanine Davis on 7/19/2022.