Growers and Researcher Discuss Millennium Block Trials

Jim Rogers Research, Rootstocks, Varieties

Two citrus growers recently explained the benefits to be gained from research at the Indian River Research and Education Center’s (IRREC) Millennium Block in Fort Pierce, and a scientist discussed a grapefruit study there. The IRREC is a University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences (UF/IFAS) facility. The 20-acre block was planted in 2019 to help growers find …

Satsuma Overload: Citrus Growers Need to Diversify

Jim Rogers Cold Hardy, Varieties

Citrus harvest season is in full swing across the North Florida/South Georgia production region. One thing is certain this season: Growers need to diversify their farming operations with citrus varieties other than satsuma mandarins. Grower Kim Jones, who also owns a citrus packing facility in Monticello, Florida, and is part-owner of a similar facility in Tifton, Georgia, discussed the high …

Display Day Draws Good Crowd

Jim Rogers Fresh, Orange Juice, Varieties

Fruit display days are an integral part of the citrus breeding process. The evaluations provided by participants give important feedback on the taste, appearance, texture and overall desirability of the fruit sampled whether it be for juice or the fresh market. The University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences (UF/IFAS) hosted a display on Nov. 14 at the …

Millennium Block Field Day Gives Growers Firsthand Look at Trials

Jim Rogers Events, Rootstocks, Varieties

The University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences (UF/IFAS) Indian River Research and Education Center (IRREC) in Fort Pierce hosted a drive-through field day for attendees to tour its Millennium block. The grove features more than 5,500 2- and 3-year-old trees. A total of 154 new citrus scion/rootstock combinations are included in the research project. The trial has …

Best Bets for HLB-Tolerant Citrus

Jim Rogers Varieties

B9-65 Valencia received much attention from horticulturist John Chater during a virtual meeting highlighting HLB-tolerant citrus varieties developed by the Citrus Research and Education Center (CREC) Plant Improvement Team. Chater is an assistant professor at the University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences CREC. ORANGESAccording to Chater, pound solids per acre and yield per acre are the most …

HLB Tolerance Data Expected in Early 2023

Jim Rogers Rootstocks, Varieties

Conclusive data on trials in the Millennium Block, expected in early 2023, may reveal which of more than 5,500 trees can tolerate HLB, researchers say. The Millennium Block is at the University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences (UF/IFAS) Indian River Research and Education Center (IRREC) in Fort Pierce. IRREC Director Ronald Cave said the 20-acre grove, established …

Fruit Displays Offer Growers Opportunities to Give Feedback

Jim Rogers Events, Tip of the Week, Varieties

By Peter Chaires Each season, variety displays and field days offer growers, packers, processors, nurseries, marketers, flavor companies and other interested parties an opportunity to experience the latest developments in Florida’s citrus breeding programs. Each team takes its own approach to these events. Some are more focused on fruit displays and sampling, some have field tours, and others include scientific …

Scion Selections Highlighted at Expo

Jim Rogers Citrus Expo, Varieties

At the Citrus & Specialty Crop Expo, Jude Grosser and Fred Gmitter provided an update on the numerous scion selections produced at the Citrus Research and Education Center (CREC). Both are University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences plant breeders. Here are a few of the scion selections they highlighted in a presentation titled Working to Provide Sustainable …

Citrus Growers Invited to Visit Variety Trial

Jim Rogers Events, Rootstocks, Varieties

The University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences (UF/IFAS) Indian River Research and Education Center (IRREC) will host a Millennium Block Variety Trial Field Day on Oct. 19. The event will be held from 9 a.m. to noon. The Millennium Block is at 7850 Pruitt Research Road in Fort Pierce. Registration can be completed online here or by …

New Finger Lime Cultivars for the Specialty Citrus Market

Jim Rogers Limes, Tip of the Week, Varieties

By Manjul Dutt The finger lime is an HLB-tolerant Australian native citrus that has been gaining popularity and importance in the last few years. Finger lime has several unique fruit qualities that set it apart from conventional sweet oranges and mandarins. The primary characteristic of this fruit is the round to teardrop-shaped juice vesicles, known as “citrus caviar,” that burst …

The Status of Satsuma Mandarins in Georgia

Jim Rogers Georgia, Mandarins, Varieties

Satsuma mandarins remain the predominant citrus variety produced in Georgia, but growers diversified more with their plantings this year. Jake Price, University of Georgia Extension coordinator, described the impact that growers could see with various citrus varieties now in place. He presented this information during the recent Citrus Growers’ Summer Update in Valdosta, Georgia. Price says the citrus industry in …

Evaluation of Citrus × Microcitrus Hybrid Scions

Jim Rogers Research, Varieties

By Ute Albrecht, Anas Fadli and Chandrika Ramadugu Most commercially available citrus scion cultivars are highly attractive to the Asian citrus psyllid and susceptible to HLB. There are some citrus species, however, that are HLB tolerant or resistant. This may be because they are less attractive to the psyllids and/or because they restrict pathogen proliferation and therefore HLB disease development. …

Juice for Florida’s Future

Jim Rogers Orange Juice, Research, Varieties

By Jude Grosser and Fred Gmitter New sweet oranges and sweet orange-like hybrids could offer improved juice quality for growers. It’s no secret that the recent season in Florida was a disaster, with record low production and terrible fruit quality due to HLB. Juice Brix and soluble solids were so low that harvest was delayed in many groves, resulting in …

California’s Oldest Orange Approved for Production

Jim Rogers California Corner, Varieties

The 1,000th tree okayed for growing by California’s Citrus Clonal Protection Program happens to be California’s oldest orange variety in the state. Dubbed the Mother Orange Tree, Bidwell’s Bar is a sweet Mediterranean orange brought to California from Mazatlán, Mexico, and planted in 1856. It was first planted near the Bidwell Bar Bridge near Oroville. The tree’s survival skills are some …

Sneak Peek: July 2022 Citrus Industry

Jim Rogers Rootstocks, Sneak Peek, Varieties

HLB continued to contribute to reduced production and lower quality fruit for Florida growers this season. University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences (UF/IFAS) researchers are working to help alleviate these problems by delivering improved rootstocks and varieties. The July issue of Citrus Industry magazine includes an in-depth look at this work. Read “Juice for Florida’s future” to …

Finger Limes Introduced for Florida

Jim Rogers Limes, Varieties

Two recently released University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences (UF/IFAS) varieties of finger limes were introduced at a virtual Finger Lime Symposium held in March. Manjul Dutt of the UF/IFAS Citrus Research and Education Center hosted the symposium; he also introduced the new varieties. Lourdes Pérez Cordero, UF/IFAS Extension agent in Highlands County, reported on the new …

Speeding the Search for an HLB Solution

Jim Rogers HLB Management, Research, Varieties

By J. Scott Angle, jangle@ufl.edu, @IFAS_VP My hope is that your new citrus breeding team scientist will be a new Bill Castle on warp speed for an HLB solution. That is, John Chater will accelerate the search for citrus varieties that hold up against HLB. He’s got tens of thousands of places to search. Fred Gmitter and Jude Grosser have …

Working With Citrus Growers to Select New Varieties

Jim Rogers All In For Citrus Podcast, Varieties

John Chater joined the University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences (UF/IFAS) in January as an assistant professor of horticultural sciences. His mission is to act as a conduit between citrus plant breeders and growers to find fits for new rootstock and scion selections. Chater’s love of plants was inspired by his grandfather who was a plant breeder …

Update on Finger Limes in Florida

Jim Rogers Limes, Research, Varieties

The Australian finger lime has created a buzz among chefs and mixologists for its caviar-like texture and flavorful pulp. The fruit also has captured interest among growers for its seemingly high tolerance to HLB. On March 23, the University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences (UF/IFAS) hosted a half-day online symposium on finger limes to provide growers with …

Picking Favorites at Florida Citrus Variety Display Day

Jim Rogers Citrus, Florida, Varieties

The horticultural characteristics of new citrus varieties are important, especially in the era of HLB when disease tolerance is critical. But how the fruit tastes and other consumer attributes are equally important. That’s why citrus variety display days are vital in citrus breeding. The University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences (UF/IFAS) Citrus Research and Education Center in …