Controlling HLB with Thermotherapy: What Have We Learned So Far?

By Reza Ehsani, Megan Dewdney and Evan Johnson In the last two years, many growers looked at thermotherapy as a way of keeping HLB-affected citrus trees in production until a more permanent solution could be developed. It has been shown that thermotherapy can kill HLB-causing bacteria under controlled environments. But the exact time and temperature is not known, and it … Read More

Citrus Black Spot Location and Management

citrus black spot

The citrus black spot (CBS) that emerged in Florida in 2010 apparently remains confined to Collier and Hendry counties, except for a single find in Polk County in 2013. “There’s a quarantine within those two counties (Collier and Hendry),” University of Florida researcher Jeff Rollins said in a Citrus Expo presentation. “The quarantine extends a little bit into Lee County, … Read More

Letter to the Editor: A Citrus Industry Ombudsperson

By Bill Castle University of Florida professor emeritus During a recent breakfast with an industry friend, I asked: What is your outlook on the future of our industry? His positive reply was direct and immediate. He expanded on that reply by revealing a realistic confidence in the ability of growers to plant and grow young trees as supported by his … Read More

Intensive Management of Grove Leads to Production Turnaround

citrus grove renovation

Citrus grower Paul Fabry discusses grove practices that led to a huge increase in production in a newly acquired Basinger grove in just a few seasons. The grove has approximately 750 net acres. “Two years ago when we first got the grove, it was in a shape that needed some renovation and I was advised by several prominent industry leaders … Read More

‘The King’ Promotes Fresh From Florida

promotes Fresh From Florida

The great Richard Petty was at PMA’s Fresh Summit for a partnership that promotes Fresh From Florida. Fresh From Florida has joined forces with “The King” to get Florida products in front of more consumers. Petty and Florida Commissioner of Agriculture Adam Putnam stopped by AgNet Media’s booth at the summit.

Root Nutrition Key in HLB-Infected Trees

HLB root nutrition

University of Florida researcher Jude Grosser focused on root nutrition during the Citrus Nutrition Day at the Citrus Research and Education Center on October 11. In this report, he says citrus roots impacted by HLB are missing the nutrients they need and discusses possible solutions, including what he calls “hybrid nutrition programs.” “We’ve gotten kind of too focused on what’s … Read More

Solace Found in Initial Citrus Crop Forecast

A bit of weight was lifted off of Florida citrus growers’ shoulders after hearing the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s initial 2016–17 Florida citrus crop forecast that calls for 70 million boxes of oranges. Citrus industry members gathered at Florida Citrus Mutual’s Political Action Committee Clay Shoot and Crop Estimate Luncheon to hear the live forecast from Southeast AgNet. The event, … Read More

2016 Citrus Expo Presentations Now Available Online

Every year, the Citrus Expo seminar program provides a wealth of new research information for growers. Thanks to the University of Florida/Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences, much of the information from the 2016 Citrus Expo program can now be found online. PowerPoint presentations from nearly all the speakers can be found on the Citrus Expo website made available through … Read More

First Florida Citrus Crop Forecast of the Season Shows Declines

Candi Erick, agricultural statistics administrator with the Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services’ Florida Agricultural Statistics Service, issued the initial citrus crop forecast of the 2016-17 crop season. Florida non-Valencia oranges are forecast at 34 million boxes, down from 36.1 million boxes at the end of the 2015-16 season. Valencia oranges were forecast at 36 million boxes, down from … Read More

Postbloom Fruit Drop Control: Timing Is Key

PFD control

Timing of fungicide sprays is the key to controlling the postbloom fruit drop (PFD) that caused many Florida citrus growers severe problems this year. That was a central message that University of Florida researcher Natalia Peres delivered at Citrus Expo this summer. In this interview, Peres discusses the keys to proper spray timing, starting with bloom. Peres says longer bloom … Read More

‘Come Home’ to UF-UF/IFAS Agriculture and Gardening Day, Oct. 15

Agriculture and natural resources interests are invited to come home to the University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences and see some informative exhibits during Agriculture and Gardening Day Oct. 15, outside The Swamp. “Come home” because it’s homecoming weekend at UF, and the Gators are playing the Missouri Tigers. People affiliated with agriculture and natural resources have … Read More

Post-Hurricane: Some Fruit Drop on River; Interior Mostly OK

Heavy winds from Hurricane Matthew Friday caused some fruit drop in the Indian River citrus area. But the amount of drop was “not catastrophic,” said Florida Citrus Mutual spokesman Andrew Meadows. “The fact that it stayed offshore helped tremendously,” Meadows said. Some Indian River growers and packers told Mutual that in addition to fruit drop, there will likely be some … Read More

Indian River Citrus Grower on Canker, HLB and Bactericides

canker, HLB, bactericides

Canker and HLB have made things very difficult for Indian River citrus growers, but outgoing Indian River Citrus League President Scott Lambeth is optimistic about bactericides. “For the last three years with the contraction of the industry, it’s very difficult to keep an open mind and stay positive when you see family farms that are third and fourth generation still … Read More

ACP Movement Shows History Repeating Itself

florida citrus

Research is looking at what we can learn from the Asian citrus psyllid’s (ACP) history, specifically ACP movement throughout Southern California. Psyllid finds in Central California are mimicking the insect’s history of spread. University of California, Department of Agriculture and Natural Resources held it’s California Asian Citrus Psyllid and Huanglongbing Research and Extension Summit at UC Riverside. The summit was … Read More

Hurricane Preparedness

By Bob Rouse and Mongi Zekri Little can be done to protect trees and fruit from hurricane velocity wind, but we can take steps to protect the people, equipment and supplies that will be needed for the recovery. Below is a checklist for citrus grove managers. Pre-Hurricane Preparation Checklist Personnel assignments: 1. Make a list of all tasks and make … Read More

Evaluation of Tree T-PEEs for Freeze Protection in Young Citrus

By Kelly T. Morgan and Stephen J. Futch Water has been used for cold protection in past freezes with mixed success. Low dew point temperatures and high winds can promote evaporative cooling when insufficient amounts of water are used. Various methods have been used to protect young citrus trees from frost and freeze conditions. Among these, the use of covers … Read More

Guest Workers: Past, Present and the Future

By Gülcan Önel and Derek Farnsworth The U.S. agricultural sector has a long history of dependence on foreign workers, and the Florida citrus industry is no exception. Even though mechanical harvesting systems saw increased usage between 1999 and 2006, the discovery of citrus greening in 2005 and its subsequent spread across Florida virtually eliminated mechanical harvesting efforts by 2015 in … Read More

Singerman on Orange Production Costs and CHMA Participation

orange production costs

Southwest Florida citrus growers are now spending about $2,327 per acre to grow oranges, University of Florida economist Ariel Singerman said in a Citrus Expo presentation in August. “This is a decrease in cost of about 4 percent compared to last year,” Singerman says in this report. He explains the reason for the production cost decrease: “It is no longer … Read More

Fruit Fly’s Genetic Code Revealed

An international team of scientists from the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) and other research organizations have sequenced the complete genome of the Mediterranean fruit fly, Ceratitis capitata. This pest attacks more than 260 fruit, vegetable and nut crops worldwide, causing billions of dollars annually in direct damage, export sanctions, lost markets, and other costs.

Adam Putnam: Citrus Industry ‘Still Blocking and Tackling’

putnam talks citrus

“We’re an industry who’s a group of fighters,” Florida Commissioner of Agriculture Adam Putnam says in summarizing his talk Friday at the Indian River Citrus League’s annual meeting in Vero Beach. “With all the challenges that we’ve seen here on the River – from canker to hurricanes and the devastation caused by greening – we’re still blocking and tackling and … Read More