Freeze Damage Update on Texas Citrus

Ernie Nefffreeze

Citrus took the biggest freeze hit from recent Winter Storm Uri of any agricultural commodity in Texas, reported Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service. AgriLife Extension estimated citrus crop losses of at least $230 million. Other Texas commodities taking major freeze hits were livestock, with losses of at least $228 million, and vegetable crops, with at least $150 million in losses. … Read More

Texas Freeze Leaves Citrus Crop in Trouble

Ashley Robinsonfreeze

The historic cold snap that has frozen Texas this week has left citrus growers with little hope for saving their crops. “We’ve had the perfect trifecta this season,” says Dale Murden, citrus grower and president of Texas Citrus Mutual. “We’ve endured the lingering drought, Hurricane Hanna and now the St. Valentine’s Day Massacre — all on top of the pandemic. … Read More

Freeze Protection Measures for Citrus

Ernie Nefffreeze


Multi-county citrus Extension agent Chris Oswalt discussed historical and current freeze protection measures in a virtual Dec. 22 OJ Break. PASSIVE MEASURESSome cold-protection measures are taken well in advance of freezes; Oswalt referred to them as passive measures. They include grove site selection, crop selection and cultural practices. One site selection consideration is planting groves at higher elevations, which are … Read More

Citrus Growers Dodge Freeze

Ernie Nefffreeze

Lindy Savelle received numerous calls and texts from relatively new southern Georgia citrus growers prior to a mild freeze the morning of Dec. 2. “They were asking, ‘What should I do?’” said Savelle, president of the Georgia Citrus Association. The new growers were concerned because lows of 26 and 28 that morning were the coldest in the region in several … Read More

Helping Generations Cope with Freezes

Ernie Nefffreeze, Weather


Winter Weather Watch is a University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences Extension program that has helped generations of Florida citrus growers be prepared for freezes. “Back in the ’60s, we didn’t have the Internet. We had rotary dial phones,” says multi-county citrus Extension agent Chris Oswalt, who discusses the history and workings of Winter Weather Watch, which … Read More

Freeze Summary for Florida and Georgia Citrus

Ernie Nefffreeze

Temperatures dipped into the 20s in much of the Florida Citrus Belt on the morning of Jan. 18, but the state’s largest citrus growers association expected little, if any, freeze damage. Florida Citrus Mutual spokesman Andrew Meadows said there could be minor or moderate fruit loss in some low-lying pockets, “but absolutely no tree damage.” The coldest Florida citrus region … Read More

Irrigation Expected to Save Georgia Trees from Freeze

Ernie Nefffreeze


Most Georgia citrus growers believe microsprinkler irrigation will save their trees from a multi-day freeze that saw temperatures dip into the low 20s Friday morning, said Georgia Citrus Association President Lindy Savelle. “I think we’re going to do fine,” said Savelle, who ran microsprinklers virtually round-the-clock in her south Georgia grove because temperatures never got above 40 for five days … Read More