Growers Have a Bigger Problem Than HLB

Ernie NeffHLB Management, Market

“A bigger gorilla by far than HLB, going into the future, is slumping market demand for citrus products from Florida and apparently from other producing areas in the United States as well,” declares Apopka citrus grower Chip Henry of McGuire Groves. He believes the decline in demand for Florida citrus products is related to HLB reducing fruit quality. “Consumers are … Read More

Citrus Youth Day Is Fun for Faculty, Too

Ernie NeffCitrus

Sixty-eight people attended the third annual Citrus Youth Day at Lake Alfred’s Citrus Research and Education Center (CREC) on June 27. Jamie Burrow, Extension program manager with the University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences, says the CREC faculty and staff “get, I think, just as excited as the kids. So we really have a good time, even … Read More

Psyllids, Yield and Weed Control

Ernie NeffPsyllids, weeds


Recent University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences (UF/IFAS) research shows that HLB-spreading psyllids can feed on weeds, and that good weed control can increase fruit yield. The research results were presented by UF/IFAS weed scientist Ramdas Kanissery, who works at the Southwest Florida Research and Education Center (SWFREC) in Immokalee. Kanissery said his work on psyllids feeding … Read More

UF/IFAS Helps Assess, Manage New Fruit Bug

Daniel CooperCitrus, Industry News Release, invasive, Pests, Research, Top


Researchers with the University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences (UF/IFAS) are already trying to help growers figure out how to effectively manage the problems created by an invasive pest  – confirmed last week in Highlands County — that could further erode citrus production at a time when growers are just beginning to turn the corner on managing … Read More

Pest Alert: Lebbeck Mealybug Found in Florida Citrus

Daniel CooperIndustry News Release, Pests

The Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services (FDACS) Division of Plant Industry issued an updated pest alert for lebbeck mealybug. Laurie Hurner, Highlands County Extension director, says this pest and its damage have been found in Highlands County citrus. “It has been misidentified as cottony cushion scale,” says Hurner. “It has been found in young trees under net and … Read More

PIECES OF THE PAST: Back When Bushel Baskets Were the Next Big Thing

Tacy CalliesPieces of the Past

By Brenda Eubanks Burnette While some things stay the same in citrus, others clearly do not. Today’s growers are experimenting with drones and other technology in the grove, but back in the 1920s, bushel baskets were making waves in the industry. Here’s an interesting excerpt from a March 1921 Citrus Industry article titled “Citrus Fruits in Bushel Baskets” by M.S. … Read More

Orange Grower: ‘Best Year I’ve Ever Had’

Ernie NeffProduction


Hardee County orange grower Kenny Sanders said at a grower roundtable meeting on June 25 that he produced 409 boxes per acre in the 2018–19 Florida citrus season. “This is the best year financially I’ve ever had in the citrus business,” Sanders said at the Wauchula gathering hosted by Peace River Valley Citrus Growers Association. “In 2012, I picked 500 … Read More

Voluntary Best Practices for California Citrus Growers’ Response to HLB

Daniel CooperCalifornia Corner, HLB Management, Industry News Release


Best Practices Developed by Grower-Led, Science-Supported Task Force To provide California citrus growers with a strong toolbox of science-supported strategies and tactics to protect their orchards from huanglongbing (HLB), the Citrus Pest & Disease Prevention Committee endorsed a set of best practices for growers to voluntarily employ in response to HLB in California. The recommendations — which were developed based … Read More

Getting HLB Material Into Phloem

Ernie NeffHLB Management


University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences (UF/IFAS) plant pathologist Ozgur Batuman discusses efforts to get materials that fight HLB into the citrus tree’s phloem, where it might be most effective. Batuman explains that bacteria that cause HLB “live inside the phloem of citrus. That is very difficult to reach to kill … by conventional methods, such as … Read More

Sneak Peek: July 2019 Citrus Industry Magazine

Tacy CalliesSneak Peek

Four articles on grove management will give citrus growers food for thought in the July issue of Citrus Industry magazine. The first article tells how one grower handles HLB. Del Murphy discusses production practices that have helped him cope with the disease. Bactericides, irrigation and nutrition management are among the topics he addresses. The second article is for growers who … Read More

Understanding Glyphosate Formulations

Tacy CalliesResearch, weeds

By Ramdas Kanissery, Steve Futch, Brent Sellers and Camille McAvoy Glyphosate is a popular post-emergent herbicide among Florida citrus growers for its broad-spectrum of weed control under trees and in row middles. The use of glyphosate as a “burn-down” application alone, or in combination with other herbicides, is a standard practice in citrus groves. Various glyphosate-containing product formulations are available … Read More

Nelsen Reappointed to Advisory Committee

Len WilcoxCalifornia Corner

Joel Nelsen, former president of California Citrus Mutual, has been reappointed to the Fresh Fruit and Vegetable Agricultural Technical Advisory Committee. This committee advises the U.S. secretary of agriculture and the U.S. trade representative on a myriad of policy issues. Nelsen has served on this committee since the George W. Bush administration. He has been the committee chair for the … Read More

Technology: Consider the Costs

Ernie NeffTechnology

Tara Wade, a University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences economist, has some advice for growers considering new technology for the grove. “What we’d like growers to do is start to think about all the costs involved … do the math before they invest,” she says. “Growers have to constantly think about the trade-offs” of adopting new technology … Read More

Studying Citrus Greening with an Integrated Approach

Daniel CooperCitrus Greening, Diseases, HLB Management, Industry News Release, Psyllids, Research

citrus greening

While citrus growers continue to look for best management approaches to deal with the deadly greening disease, scientists will take an integrated look at how to protect young trees by using existing tools growers can use. Five scientists from the University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences (UF/IFAS) will compare insect management tools, including insect-proof netting. Researchers also … Read More

Florida Citrus Commission Approves Preliminary 2019-20 Budget

Tacy CalliesFlorida Citrus Commission

The Florida Citrus Commission approved a preliminary 2019-20 budget for the Florida Department of Citrus (FDOC) based on an estimate of 71.40 million boxes of oranges and 4.51 million boxes of grapefruit. Presented Wednesday, the department’s total preliminary budget is $14.82 million with an overall budget decrease of about $4 million over the previous year, which is largely due to … Read More

Jack Payne Announces Retirement

Daniel CooperAgriculture, Citrus, Citrus Greening, Research

After serving nearly 10 years as the senior vice president for agriculture and natural resources with the University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences (UF/IFAS), Jack Payne announced he will retire next year. His last day with UF/IFAS will be July 1, 2020. Payne has overseen Extension offices across Florida and its 12 research and education centers since … Read More

Study Shows Mandarin IPM Needs Work

Len WilcoxIPM, Pests

According to a study published in the Journal of Economic Entomology, current integrated pest management (IPM) techniques used in California mandarins may need to be adjusted to allow for differences between mandarins and oranges. The study suggests that following guidelines for oranges may lead to an overuse of pesticides in some situations. Almost all mandarins in America are grown in … Read More

Update on Brassinosteroids for HLB Management

Tacy CalliesHLB Management, Research

By Fernando Alferez, Christopher Vincent and Tripti Vashisth Brassinosteroids (BR), a relatively newly discovered class of plant hormone, regulate several developmental and physiological processes in fruit crops such as grapes, pears and cherries and in some non-edible plants. BR also induce disease resistance against different pathogens in a great number of crop plants. A form of BR (epibrassinolide) was shown … Read More

All In For Citrus Podcast, June 2019

Taylor HillmanAll In For Citrus Podcast

all in for citrus podcast

June’s All In For Citrus Podcast is filled with updates on University of Florida citrus research. First, Citrus Research and Education Center Director Michael Rogers discusses a recent visit by some U.S. Department of Agriculture administrators who make decisions on how millions of dollars in farm bill citrus research money are allocated. He explains that the visit was very valuable … Read More

Many Aspects of CUPS Addressed

Ernie NeffCUPS, Research


Arnold Schumann, University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences (UF/IFAS) professor of soil science, reports on his five years of research into citrus under protective screen (CUPS) for fresh fruit. He is one of the first researchers in Florida to do extensive, hands-on research into the system. His discussion is part of the current All In For Citrus … Read More