Master of Crop Science
Project: Augmenting Nutrient Acquisition Ranges of Greenhouse Grown CBD (cannabidiol) Hemp (Cannabis sativa) Cultivars.
Second Major: Master of Horticultural Science
Advisor / Co-Advisors: Keith Edmisten / Jeanine Davis
Jillian De Gezelle
Non-thesis Project on the growing interest in the production of hemp for the extraction of cannabidiol (CBD) due to reported therapeutic benefits. Recent policy reform has permitted state hemp pilot programs including the land grant research institutions the ability to investigate the potential of growing and harvesting Cannabis sativa plants (≤0.3% tetrahydrocannabinol) for these purposes in the U.S. There are vast gaps of knowledge regarding the fertility requirements of hemp cultivars grown in a horticultural production setting for floral attributes such as the cannabinoid constituents. Foliar tissue analysis provides an avenue to determine adequate ranges for nutrient uptake and estimating fertilizer requirements prior to visual symptoms of deficiency or toxicity. To facilitate a survey range of elemental nutrient acquisition in hemp cultivars propagated for CBD production, foliar analysis was executed using the most recently mature leaves (MRML) of mother stock plants. All plants were maintained in the vegetative stage for twelve weeks, prior to initiation of cutting for clone harvesting. A total of thirteen cultivars were utilized to broaden previously reported baseline survey ranges. Significant differences were found among all thirteen cultivars in accumulation of both micro- and macro- essential nutrients widening the range of the fertility requirements of Cannabis plants grown in this production model for CBD harvesting.
Research conducted by Dr. David Suchoff at the Piedmont Research Station on Hemp CBD variety trials allowed me the opportunity to build a variety web page on NC State’s Hemp Extension portal wherein researchers can add yield, chemistry, and pest disease information. I was able to observe and document phenotypic differences among 10 hemp varieties targeted for CBD production. In addition to photo documentation of plant architecture, leaf and flower samples from all varieties were culminated into voucher specimens for the NC State herbarium. Collectively these resources will aid researchers, agriculture extension agents, and producers in evaluating potential cultivation of hemp while contributing educational resources to enhance a knowledge base of the specialty crop.
Publications and Presentations:
- December 2018 Workshop on Innovation and Regulation in Agriculture: Peer Poster Presentation:
Prairie strips improve biodiversity and the delivery of multiple ecosystem services from corn–soybean croplands (Schulte et al. 2017).
- February 2020 STS 323Q Exploratory Studies: Seminar/Talk
Navigating Your Future & Finding Your Passion – Discussion on life as a college student and how to overcome the challenges of undergraduate and graduate life. Brief discussion on the botany of Cannabis, its history, future and why I have chosen this field.
I plan to use my degree to:
Become a valuable member of the scientific community and assist and educate crop producers on both a small and large scale. I love interacting with our local and state communities and plan to continue to engage in every opportunity possible in sharing my love for plants with our youth.
What I enjoyed most about my experience in Crop and Soil Sciences at NC State was:
The strong connections among faculty, students, and the NC State community as a whole. I always felt welcomed, supported, and encouraged in pursuing my dreams and aspirations.
While earning my degree, my greatest supporters were:
Family: My fiance David, son Jacob, son Aden, daughter Eve, sister Michelle, mother Lena, and recently deceased father Randy, and future in laws Wanda and Mark.
Faculty: Dr. Keith Edminsten, Dr. Jeanine Davis, Dr. Jillian De Gezelle, Dr. Brian Whipker, Dr. Bob Patterson, Angie Barefoot, and Rachel McLaughlin.
Now that I have graduated, I’m most looking forward to:
Continuing to learn through collaborations and engaging with other professionals that not only share my interests but can offer enlightenment on a variety of topics and specialties.