New Florida Ag Hall of Fame Members Include Citrus Industry Contributors


Florida Commissioner of Agriculture Adam H. Putnam and the Florida Agricultural Hall of Fame Foundation announced the new hall of fame inductees for 2019. The induction ceremony will be held at the Florida State Fair’s Agricultural Hall of Fame Banquet on Feb. 12, 2019. More information is available “Agriculture is Florida’s oldest industry, and it continues to support our … Read More

Lemons: What’s Available and What’s Coming


Lemon varieties now available for planting in Florida and varieties that may be available in the future were discussed at a recent lemon workshop in Lake Alfred. Fred Gmitter, a University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences researcher, summarizes his presentation. “The currently available varieties are Bearss and Eureka,” Gmitter says. “Bearss is a heavy-bearing tree; it produces … Read More

Citrus Tree Covers Keep Deadly Psyllids Away


University of Florida (UF) scientists are finding that by covering new citrus trees with mesh, they can keep disease-carrying insects from harming the plants. That could be a big step toward stemming the deadly citrus greening disease, UF Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences (IFAS) researchers say. Asian citrus psyllids can infect the citrus trees with greening, also known as … Read More

Revamping Communication with Citrus Growers

Florida citrus growers now have a one-stop shop for everything citrus research coming out of the University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences (UF/IFAS). A new website, monthly enewsletter and monthly podcast were announced by UF/IFAS last month during Citrus Expo. Jack Payne, senior vice president for agriculture and natural resources with UF, says this “All In for … Read More

Hands-On Training Scheduled at UF/IFAS Citrus Workshop


Florida citrus growers will learn about the latest research from the University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences and test new technology at a workshop in Sebring, Sept. 25-26. UF/IFAS Extension Highlands County is working with statewide UF/IFAS Citrus Extension faculty to bring the latest in scientific studies and a hands-on learning experience to growers. Faculty will cover … Read More

Application Now Open for Florida Citrus Tree Recovery Program

As of Sept. 18, citrus producers can apply for the Florida Citrus Tree Recovery Program (Block Grant) through the Department of Emergency Management (DEM) contractors co-located with Farm Service Agency staff at U.S. Department of Agriculture service centers in Bartow, Kissimmee, Wauchula, Okeechobee, Moore Haven, Fort Myers and Fort Pierce. Click here for contact information. A requirement of the Block … Read More

Stansly’s Parting Shot at Psyllids


Less than a month before his death, the late Phil Stansly offered Citrus Expo attendees advice for coping with psyllid resistance to neonicotinoid insecticides. Stansly was a University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences entomologist based at the Southwest Florida Research and Education Center. He was among those credited with organizing Florida’s first psyllid- and HLB-fighting citrus health … Read More

CUPS Protects Citrus from HLB and Storms


A system designed to protect citrus trees from the deadly greening disease withstood the ravaging winds of Hurricane Irma last year, University of Florida scientists say. With reinforcements installed after the storm, they’ll likely withstand even more dangerous storms. Using citrus under protective screening (CUPS), growers can keep the Asian citrus psyllids away from their trees, said Arnold Schumann, a … Read More

Could HLB-Tolerant Mandarins Be Used in Florida Orange Juice?

new york times

By Laura Reuss, Fred Gmitter and Yu Wang Sweet orange and mandarin fruits are the most popular citrus crops worldwide. Although often mistakenly considered one and the same, oranges and mandarins are different species with specific distinctions. For instance, mandarins are smaller and easier to peel than oranges. Additionally, mandarins are primarily eaten as fresh fruit, whereas most sweet oranges … Read More

Citrus Block Grant Application Workshops Scheduled for Growers


The Florida Division of Emergency Management (DEM) announced the successful receipt of $343,221,216.73 in federal Florida Citrus Tree Recovery Program funds to help Florida citrus farmers recover from the devastating effects of Hurricane Irma. Four workshops will be held to assist growers in applying for the funds. This outcome was accomplished through a partnership with the Florida Department of Agriculture … Read More

Why Citrus Growers Should Keep Spraying for Psyllids

For several years after HLB was detected in Florida in 2005, most citrus growers and researchers agreed that it was essential to spray aggressively for the Asian citrus psyllids that spread the disease. In recent years, however, many growers have questioned whether it still makes sense to spray for psyllids when 100 percent of groves are infected, as is the … Read More

Ag Industry Mourns Loss of Phil Stansly

Philip A Stansly, age 74, of LaBelle, passed away Sept. 12, 2018 in Fort Myers, Florida. Stansly served the agricultural industry as a member of the UF Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences (IFAS) Southwest Florida Research and Education Center team for 32 years. Stansly was a frequent contributor to Citrus Industry magazine and was featured as the “psyllid slayer” … Read More

Speeding Up Citrus Greening Research


Clewiston, FL – U.S. Sugar, in a partnership with Texas A&M AgriLife Research, announced a significant step forward in research efforts fighting diseases impacting food crops, including citrus greening. Early-stage research has demonstrated promise in rapidly culturing and propagating fastidious pathogens and microbes, including those that cause citrus greening, and enabling testing a broad range of antimicrobial solutions. “This cutting-edge … Read More

A Grower’s Perspective on Marketing Lemons in Florida

Interest in lemon production is increasing among Florida’s citrus producers. This was evident by the strong turnout of growers who attended a lemon workshop at the Citrus Research and Education Center on Sept. 11. Approximately 80 growers and industry members attended the event, hosted by University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences Polk County Extension. George Hamner Jr., … Read More

Fruit Drop and HLB

By Tripti Vashisth and Lisa Tang Fruit drop is a natural, physiological phenomenon that occurs in all citrus varieties. However, pre-harvest fruit drop often causes grower distress and concern as it can result in significant yield reduction as well as loss of tree resources into non-harvested fruit. THREE PERIODS OF FRUIT DROP In general, citrus trees bloom profusely in spring, … Read More

New Monthly Podcast for Citrus Growers


The University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences (UF/IFAS) and Southeast AgNet are partnering to provide the latest news on citrus-related research in a monthly podcast. The podcast, “All in for Citrus,” will launch the last week in September and will feature short interviews with scientists working to find solutions to citrus greening and other devastating citrus diseases. … Read More

A Day in the Life of a UF/IFAS Extension Citrus Agent: Steve Futch

steve futch

Steve Futch’s official office is located in Lake Alfred at the University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences (UF/IFAS) Citrus Research and Education Center. But most days you’ll find him working out of his other office — his car — driving from grove to grove in his four-county area. “I go to meet or work with citrus growers … Read More

Combating Citrus Greening with Fungus


By Breanna Kendrick The University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences (UF/IFAS) is testing an insect-killing fungus to combat the Asian citrus psyllid (ACP). Pasco Avery, biological scientist at the UF/IFAS Indian River Research and Education Center in Fort Pierce, is researching the use of fungus-oil sprays and assessing the effects on ACP, the insect that transmits the … Read More

Florida Ag Water Challenges


At the Citrus Expo general session in August, Rich Budell of the Budell Water Group addressed water supply and quality challenges facing Florida agriculture. He summarizes some of the eye-opening statistics he presented. Budell says in a part of Central Florida, the 20-year water demand is estimated to be 250 million gallons per day more than what the anticipated natural … Read More