UF/IFAS and FDACS Working to Bring Pesticide Licensing Online

Daniel CooperCitrus, Industry News Release, Pesticides


(UF/IFAS) — University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences (UF/IFAS) Extension and the Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services (FDACS) are working to identify ways to provide online testing for certified pesticide applicators while in-person testing is unavailable due to COVID-19. All in-person UF/IFAS Extension programs and activities, including pesticide testing, have been postponed or cancelled through … Read More

Sneak Peek: April 2020 Citrus Industry Magazine

Tacy CalliesSneak Peek

As everyone strives to stay healthy amid the coronavirus crisis, the April issue of Citrus Industry magazine focuses on another kind of health — young tree health. In the first of four articles focused on practices for planting new trees, University of Florida (UF) researchers Ozgur Batuman and Megan Dewdney give growers advice on what to watch for when receiving … Read More

California Citrus Mutual Recommends Letters for Essential Business Workers

Len WilcoxCalifornia Corner

town hall

As part of the state effort to control the Covid-19 (coronavirus) pandemic, California Governor Gavin Newsom announced a statewide stay-at-home order that went into effect immediately. The order does not apply to workers in essential businesses, which includes agriculture. In some parts of the state, the order is being aggressively enforced by local law enforcement. Reports are circulating that some … Read More

Rootstock Selection Made Easier

Ernie NeffRootstocks


The recently released fourth edition of the Florida Citrus Rootstock Selection Guide is “way more user friendly” than past editions, one of its authors says. University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences (UF/IFAS) researcher Rhuanito “Johnny” Ferrarezi says “a completely redesigned website” is what makes the guide so useful for growers. Ferrarezi works as an assistant professor at … Read More

All In For Citrus Podcast, March 2020

Taylor HillmanAll In For Citrus Podcast

The March episode of the All In For Citrus podcast covers how the University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences (UF/IFAS) Citrus Research and Education Center (CREC) is operating under COVID-19 restrictions and some of the research that continues. CREC Center Director Michael Rogers starts the episode with the impacts COVID-19 is having on the citrus research team … Read More

Even in Times of Crisis, Citrus Research Continues

Daniel CooperCitrus Greening, Industry News Release, Research


(UF/IFAS) —The coronavirus has upended daily routines, events and schedules. From work to schools to shopping, every aspect of life changed overnight and continues to change with each passing day. Even with a global pandemic, University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences (UF/IFAS) citrus researchers plow forward in their quest to find answers to fighting the devastating disease … Read More

FDOC Beefs Up Promotions

Ernie NeffFlorida Citrus Commission


At the guidance of state health officials in response to coronavirus (COVID-19), the Florida Citrus Commission met telephonically on March 18. At the meeting, commissioners voted to beef up Florida Department of Citrus (FDOC) efforts to promote Florida citrus products. “We agreed to allocate another $500,000 out of our fund balance for media enhancement to our current marketing and promotion … Read More

Effect of Planting Density and Enhanced Nutrition on Grapefruit

Tacy CalliesNutrition

By Rhuanito Soranz Ferrarezi, Dinesh Phuyal, Davie Kadyampakeni and Kelly Morgan The Indian River District is the world’s premier grapefruit production region due to a warm, ocean-facing humid climate and Flatwoods soils. The geographical location leads to the production of fruit with thin rinds and exceptional juice and color that has been a high-value export delicacy in Europe and Asia. … Read More

Public Field Hearings on Seasonal and Perishable Produce Postponed

Daniel CooperAgriculture, Florida, Food Safety, Georgia, Industry News Release

field heatrings

(USTR) — Consistent with recommendations of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the field hearings scheduled in Florida and Georgia on April 7 and April 9 by the U.S. Trade Representative and the U.S. Departments of Agriculture and Commerce will be postponed and rescheduled at a later date. Interested parties are still encouraged to submit written comments and information … Read More

Highlands Growers Hear Marketing Talks

Ernie NeffMarket

crop forecast

Aaron Himrod indicated he was cautiously optimistic about Highlands County Citrus Growers Association (HCCGA) members’ ability to grow fruit in the face of HLB at the association’s annual meeting on March 12. But Himrod, the outgoing association president, said the industry’s emphasis now needs to be on marketing. That and other activities at the meeting were described by association Executive … Read More

Hemp Advice: Start Small, Be Cautious

Ernie NeffAlternative Crops

There are numerous challenges facing potential growers of industrial hemp in Florida, said Jerry Fankhauser at the recent Florida Agricultural Policy Outlook Conference. Fankhauser is assistant director of the Florida Agricultural Experiment Station and lead oversight manager of the University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences (UF/IFAS) Industrial Hemp Pilot Project. Researchers involved in the project are looking … Read More

North Florida Meeting Addresses Citrus Production Practices

Tacy CalliesProduction

By Clint Thompson Citrus was the focus of an annual meeting held in Quincy, Florida, on March 12. Growers from Florida and Georgia converged at the North Florida Research and Education Center to learn about various citrus management practices for the region. GROWER-GUIDED AGENDA Danielle Sprague, University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences (UF/IFAS) Extension agent in Jefferson … Read More

Keeping Fresh Fruit Marketable

Ernie NeffFresh


Mark Ritenour with the University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences (UF/IFAS) discusses research efforts to keep Florida’s fresh fruit marketable. Ritenour is a postharvest horticulturist at the Indian River Research and Education Center. Ritenour begins with maximum residue limit requirements for chemicals in fresh citrus for export. A UF/IFAS website provides pesticide residue limits by various major … Read More

Root Hair Enhancement With Low Phosphorus Concentrations

Tacy CalliesNutrition

By Laura Waldo and Arnold Schumann It has been the accepted belief for many years that citrus varieties and rootstocks do not develop root hairs. However, research has shown that root hair growth can be stimulated when soil phosphorus (P) concentrations are extremely low. It is possible that in Florida, citrus roots could fail to produce root hairs due to … Read More

March Citrus Crop Forecast Sees Slight Decreases

Daniel CooperCrop Forecast

crop forecast

Mark Hudson of the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s National Agricultural Statistics Service (USDA/NASS) reported the latest update to the 2019-2020 citrus crop forecast on March 10. Non-Valencia Oranges The Florida non-Valencia forecast is lowered 1 million boxes to 30 million boxes. The row count survey conducted Feb. 25-26 showed 98 percent of the early-midseason rows are harvested. California remained at … Read More

Florida Citrus Hall of Fame: Inductees and More

Ernie NeffAwards, History

Florida Citrus Hall of Fame Executive Director Brenda Eubanks Burnette names the latest inductees and discusses the organization. Citrus Industry magazine editor Tacy Callies interviewed Burnette at the 2020 Florida Citrus Hall of Fame induction ceremony on March 6 at Florida Southern College in Lakeland. Burnette says this year was “the first time that I can remember … that all … Read More

Now Is the Time to Watch for PFD

Ernie NeffPFD

With bloom breaking out in Florida citrus groves, plant pathologist Megan Dewdney recommended growers keep an eye out for postbloom fruit drop (PFD). Dewdney works for the University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences (UF/IFAS) Citrus Research and Education Center (CREC) in Lake Alfred.  “We have actually observed some diseased flowers,” Dewdney said March 3 at an OJ … Read More

Fried Addresses Citrus Issues

Ernie NeffLegislative


Florida Agriculture Commissioner Nikki Fried delivered the keynote address at the Florida Citrus Hall of Fame induction ceremonies in Lakeland on March 6. She also discussed citrus issues with Citrus Industry magazine editor Tacy Callies. Fried says the Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services (FDACS), which she directs, is working with the state Legislature on a variety of budget … Read More

Advice for Psyllid/HLB Control

Ernie NeffHLB Management, Psyllids

Even with the virtually 100 percent level of HLB infection found in Florida citrus trees, reducing Asian citrus psyllids improves tree health and yield, entomologist Lukasz Stelinski says. Stelinski is a University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences (UF/IFAS) professor at the Citrus Research and Education Center.   Stelinski reports that trials the late UF/IFAS researcher Phil Stansly … Read More

Viruses Might Help Control Asian Citrus Psyllids

Daniel CooperCitrus Greening, Industry News Release, Psyllids, Research


(UF/IFAS) — University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences (UF/IFAS) researchers are working toward establishing a new biological method that may help growers control the insect that transmits the deadly greening disease into citrus trees. Greening is present in about 95 percent of the citrus trees in Florida, so by using a virus that may kill the insect, … Read More