field day

Field Day Features Mechanical Citrus Harvest

Daniel Cooper Events, Technology

By Frank Giles A recent field day showcased how technology might help citrus growers with two of their biggest challenges: sourcing labor and fighting HLB.  The event was held at Lost Lake Groves in Lake Placid, Florida, and featured machine harvest of citrus trees in an experimental super-high-density grove. The grove has 908 trees per acre and has been topped …

New Center to Accelerate HLB Solutions

Tacy Callies Breeding, Technology

By J. Scott Angle, jangle@ufl.edu, @IFAS_VP My job is to help you make money. By changing the way the University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences (UF/IFAS) does business in pursuing citrus solutions, I hope to change your business for the better. We’ve just launched a UF/IFAS Crop Transformation Center (CTC). It has the potential to speed delivery …

New AgTech Expo Looks at Rapidly Moving Sector

Tacy Callies Events, Technology

The Gulf Citrus Growers Association and the University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences (UF/IFAS) Southwest Florida Research and Education Center presented the Florida AgTech and AI Expo in Punta Gorda on Dec. 14. The event showcased emerging trends in technology and how some farms are putting ag technology to work in the real world. In addition to …

data

Enhancing Smart Irrigation With Centralized Data

Daniel Cooper Irrigation, Technology

By Sandra M. Guzmán Efficient irrigation management is crucial in optimizing tree growth and promoting sustainable management practices in modern agriculture. This article introduces IrrigMonitor, an Internet of Things data visualization platform developed at the University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences (UF/IFAS) Indian River Research and Education Center (IRREC) Smart Irrigation and Hydrology Lab. IrrigMonitor is a …

Brazilians Learn About Mechanical Harvesting

Josh McGill Labor, Technology

Representatives of Fundecitrus and the Brazilian citrus industry went to Seville, Spain, to participate in a meeting about mechanical harvesting of citrus. The key objective was learning about different tools and machines designed for the mechanization of citrus handling. One example of machinery is the mechanized harvesting equipment used for densely cultivated orange groves. In one of their visits, the …

Soil Moisture Sensors Improve Irrigation

Josh McGill Irrigation, Technology, Tip of the Week

By Davie Kadyampakeni, Sandra M. Guzmán and Ajia Paolillo Using soil moisture sensors for irrigation scheduling can reduce water stress in citrus trees. Sensors that are easy to calibrate and maintain, specifically designed for managing irrigation and fertigation on Florida’s sandy soils, are the preferred choice. These tools enable growers to use their water resources wisely and efficiently. There are …

Fundecitrus App Aids Psyllid Insecticide Rotation

Josh McGill Brazil, HLB Management, Technology

The Fundecitrus app, launched in February, has a new feature to help citrus growers properly rotate insecticides to manage the psyllid that spreads citrus greening disease. The new feature helps growers choose insecticides with different modes of action. The use of insecticides with the same mode of action in sequential applications can result in an increase in the frequency of …

Drone Sprays for Psyllids Effective in Brazil

Josh McGill HLB Management, Psyllids, Technology

Using drones to apply chemical control for HLB-spreading psyllids in Brazil proved effective against adult insects, a Fundecitrus researcher reported. The researcher, Marcelo Miranda, said psyllid mortality was above 80% as a result of drone applications. Miranda’s work was pioneering in 2021. There was no record of the use of drones for the chemical control of the psyllid in western …

Determine Tree Health With Canopy Assist

Josh McGill HLB Management, Technology, Tip of the Week

By Amit Levy and Tripti Vashisth Many Florida citrus growers are currently injecting oxytetracycline, spraying gibberellic acid (GA) or treating trees with enhanced nutrition. A new program offered by the University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences (UFIFAS) Citrus Research and Education Center (CREC) can help growers determine if these treatments are improving tree health and leading to …

Using Artificial Intelligence to Address Ag Challenges

Tacy Callies Agriculture, Technology

Far from his roots in a small town in northwest China, Changying “Charlie” Li is now the University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences (UF/IFAS) artificial intelligence (AI) administrative coordinator. He’s also a professor of agricultural and biological engineering.  Li joined UF/IFAS last year to focus on agricultural AI with research, teaching and administration appointments. He wants to …

Canopy Assist: A New Way to Measure Tree Health

Josh McGill All In For Citrus Podcast, Technology

Tripti Vashisth, University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences (UF/IFAS) associate professor, joined the March episode of the All In For Citrus podcast to discuss a new smartphone application growers will be able to use soon to measure tree health. Plant growth regulators like gibberellic acid, 2,4-D and brassinosteroids have demonstrated the ability to improve tree health and …

Drones for Pest Control Effective in Some Situations

Josh McGill Pest Management, Technology

Technological advancements in recent years allow drones to perform precise agricultural work efficiently. One of the tasks in greatest demand is the application of phytosanitary products in a quick and timely manner. Drones can be used for extensive applications in a short time and are ideal for ultra-low-volume interventions. With drones, very specific sectors, such as sources of disease or …

Investing in Artificial Intelligence

Josh McGill Breeding, Technology

By J. Scott Angle, jangle@ufl.edu, @IFAS_VP University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences (UF/IFAS) breeders produce new citrus plants more quickly than they can figure out if consumers like how the new fruit varieties taste. In the race to create versus evaluate, creators lead evaluators by hundreds of individual plants at a time. It takes a post-doc a …

Artificial Intelligence to Assess Crop Damage

Josh McGill hurricane, Technology

University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences (UF/IFAS) researchers plan to use artificial intelligence (AI) technology to quantify damage to fruits and vegetables caused by extreme weather events. One such extreme weather event was Hurricane Ian, which struck Florida on Sept. 28, 2022. The storm’s damage to all crops, livestock and aquaculture products was initially estimated at up …

New Advancements in Herbicide Spraying

Josh McGill Technology, weeds

By Ramdas Kanissery, Yiannis Ampatzidis, Mahesh Bashyal and Shea Teems Weed control is vital for profitable citrus production since weeds compete for nutrients and water, can harbor diseases and pests, and get in the way of equipment and workers. Without proper management, weeds lead to reduced crop yield and economic losses. Chemical weed control using herbicides is the most common …

Sneak Peek: November 2022 Citrus Industry

Josh McGill hurricane, Sneak Peek, Technology

While irrigation and technology were meant to be the focus of the November issue of Citrus Industry, the aftermath of Hurricane Ian, combined with the low initial crop forecast that does not even account for the storm’s damage, proved to be the much bigger story. Editor-in-Chief Frank Giles provides early details on the hurricane’s damage to Florida’s citrus industry and …

Process Produces Safe, Fresh-Tasting Satsuma Juice

Josh McGill Mandarins, Orange Juice, Technology

Fresh-tasting satsuma orange juice with a commercially feasible shelf life is the goal of University of Georgia (UGA) Food Product Innovation and Commercialization Center (FoodPIC) scientists and food technology company Food Physics. FoodPIC and Food Physics are working together to perfect a technique known as pulsed electric field technology (PEF). PEF uses short bursts of high voltage —15,000 volts per …

Using Technology to Support Citrus Management Decisions

Josh McGill Technology

By Yiannis Ampatzidis and Sandra M. Guzmán Pests and diseases, nutrient deficiencies, tree stress from environmental conditions and other factors can be overwhelming. The arrival of sensors and small unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) make it possible to gather large amounts of data to assess risk factors and estimate possible crop performance scenarios based on the availability of resources. At the …

Startups Aim to Aid Citrus Industry

Josh McGill Florida, Technology

Two University of Florida (UF) startup companies have formed a union to help reverse the trend of declining Florida citrus production. Agriculture Intelligence and Satlantis believe they can offer a powerful tool to help the state’s growers more closely monitor their trees and manage problems faster. The startups, housed in one of UF’s business incubators, will combine expertise in precision …

Citrus Nutrient Deficiencies? There’s an App for That

Josh McGill Diseases, Nutrition, Pests, Technology

While sending citrus tissue samples to the lab for analysis remains important, the University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences (UF/IFAS) has developed a smartphone application (app) that can supplement lab analysis to identify leaf symptoms of key nutrient deficiencies and certain pests and diseases. Arnold Schumann, a professor of soil and water science with UF/IFAS, demonstrated how …