USAID Farmer-2-Farmer Onion Disease Project
Lindsey du Toit, Professor in the WSU Department of Plant Pathology, was invited by the Farmer-2-Farmer Program of the US Agency for International Development to work with onion growers on managing diseases and storage rots in the Sacapulas region of Quiche in the highlands of northwestern Guatemala. Lindsey spent March 12-26 in Guatemala on this project, working alongside Bill Buhrig, Extension Agronomist from Oregon State University. Bill provided training and outreach on irrigation management and postharvest practices. The two visited numerous small-scale farms in the extremely steep mountains of Sacapulas to learn about production practices, resources, transport, and markets; diagnose diseases, pests, and other problems affecting onion production and storage; and provide relevant training and outreach to USAID Technical Farms Assistants and farmers on disease management and storage practices. Lindsey is a Vegetable Seed Pathologist based at the WSU Mount Vernon NWREC, from which she runs a research, extension, and teaching program that serves vegetable and seed growers in western Washington as well as the Columbia Basin of central Washington.