Person: Rick Hartmann

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In a Nutshell
• Two farmers planted strips of flowering
herbs – anise hyssop, borage, and
lemon basil – with cash crops on their
farms. Pollinators in prairie strips were
also observed.
• Farmers evaluated characteristics of
the herbs and assessed pollinator use
of the herbs by doing transect counts
of pollinators during bloom.
Key Findings
• Neither farm had successful direct
seedings of anise hyssop (McGary had
success with transplanting).
• Borage filled out and flowered earliest
though it became top-heavy, fell over,
and had late-season weed management
• Lemon basil (and anise hyssop, at Mc-
Gary’s) had healthy, upright habits but
required more early-season weeding
at Hartmann’s.
• Small native bees had the most individuals
counted among all pollinator
groups observed on both farms.
• Hartmann’s lemon basil had the most
pollinators; at McGary’s, borage had
the highest average count.

December 7, 2016 


In a Nutshell
• Six farmers compared three broccoli
varieties, Belstar, Gypsy and Imperial,
to determine which produces better
during summer months (harvest July –
Sept.) in Iowa.
Key Findings
• Imperial had the highest yields at four
of six farms, followed by Gypsy and
• At three farms, Imperial had statistically
higher yields than the other
• Plant spacing differed by farm, but
average yield per area was 0.28 lb/ft2
for Imperial, followed by Gypsy (0.27
lb/ ft2), and Belstar (0.22 lb/ft2)
• Following the indications of the data,
most farmers strongly preferred Imperial
as their summer broccoli variety.



Five farmers compared two bell pepper varieties, Olympus and Revolution, to determine which produces better in Iowa’s climate. Each farm planted four randomized pairs of research plots, each pair with 10-20 plants of each variety.

December 21, 2015 


In a Nutshell
• Five farmers compared two bell pepper
varieties, Olympus and Revolution,
to determine which produces better in
Iowa’s climate.
• Each farm planted four randomized
pairs of research plots, each pair with
10-20 plants of each variety.
Key Findings
• Pepper yield was significantly different
by farm, but treatment (variety) also
had a significant effect on yield. Revolution
yield was significantly higher
than Olympus when all farms were
analyzed together.
• Revolution produced more pounds
and number of peppers per ft2 and
per plant than Olympus at three of
five farms. The remaining two farms
saw no difference in yield between the
• Average plant yield of green bell peppers
across all farms was 4.3 lb/plant
for Revolution and 4.03 lb/plant for
• Plant spacing was different by farm,
but end-of-season yield for green bell
peppers ranged from 1.82 – 2.66 lb/ft2.

December 7, 2015 


Practical Farmers of Iowa’s 2015 fall farminar series starts Nov. 10For Release: October 28, 2015 Download PDF (557 kB) Topics range from high tunnel production to soil tests and grazing cover cropsAmes, Iowa — It’s that time of the year again: cooler nights, shorter days, harvest wrapping up – the perfect time to reflect on [...]

October 28, 2015 


Objectives: 1. Determine which pepper variety, Olympus or Revolution, produces more marketable fruits and total yield in side-by-side field trials in Iowa.

July 5, 2015 


Restoring farmland for native pollinators is focus of Practical Farmers of Iowa field day Aug. 3, near Minburn – RSVPs requested For Release: July 23, 2013 Download PDF (137 kB) View Fullscreen

July 23, 2013 


PFI Announces ‘Scheduling Crops for Storage’ Field Day July 17For Release: June 30, 2010 Download PDF (241 kB) View Fullscreen

June 30, 2010 


Season Extension Small Potatoes FarmPublished: February 3, 2010 Download PDF (269 kB) View Fullscreen

February 3, 2010 


Rick and Stacy Hartmann own and operate a small direct-market horticultural farm. Rick will take a version of the much used marketing formula, ‘the five p’s’ – product, placement, promotion, product and people – and apply it to their operation.

December 15, 2009