Navel Oranges: Current Status and Future in Florida

Tacy CalliesVarieties

By Pete Spyke and Bill Castle Navel oranges are fairly tolerant of HLB, are popular and easy to sell, and offer a stable source of income that is only marginally related to worldwide supply and demand. Nevertheless, the Florida navel orange industry has experienced some tough times recently. Growers are questioning whether it is possible to grow navel oranges profitably … Read More

Parson Brown Outperforming Hamlin

Ernie NeffResearch, Varieties

Manjul Dutt recently discussed his research on the Parson Brown (PB) sweet orange, which shows some characteristics that could make it more attractive than Hamlin, Florida’s leading early-season orange. Dutt is a University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences horticultural sciences researcher at the Citrus Research and Education Center in Lake Alfred. Dutt’s research, funded by the Citrus … Read More

Improved Orange Cultivars

Ernie NeffVarieties

Improved sweet orange cultivars for processing and fresh fruit were the topic of a virtual presentation July 14 by plant breeder Jude Grosser. Grosser works at the University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences Citrus Research and Education Center in Lake Alfred.   HAMLIN SOMACLONE N13-32This new and distinct early-season clone of Hamlin has improved juice color and … Read More

Fresh Citrus Variety Options for Florida

Ernie NeffVarieties

University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences (UF/IFAS) plant breeder Fred Gmitter discussed potential fresh fruit variety options for Florida growers in a July 14 virtual presentation. Gmitter focused on releases made by breeders at UF/IFAS’ Citrus Research and Education Center in Lake Alfred. SUGAR BELLEGmitter said the Sugar Belle mandarin hybrid has high tolerance for HLB. This … Read More

OLL Sweet Oranges: Alternatives to Valencia

Tacy CalliesVarieties

By Jude Grosser Valencia sweet orange has always been the gold standard of processing oranges for the best orange juice in the world. However, there is a new kid on the block that is challenging this. University of Florida (UF) citrus breeders have been working with the late, great Citrus Hall of Fame grower/researcher Orie Lee and his family for … Read More

Sneak Peek: July 2021 Citrus Industry

Tacy CalliesRootstocks, Sneak Peek, Varieties

Growers looking for advice on the subjects of rootstocks and varieties will find several pertinent articles in the July issue of Citrus Industry magazine. According to University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences (UF/IFAS) citrus breeder Jude Grosser, Orie and Louise Lee (OLL) oranges are giving Valencias a run for their money. He discusses the beneficial characteristics of … Read More

Varieties for the Indian River Region

Ashley RobinsonVarieties

In response to HLB, the University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences (UF/IFAS) citrus breeding program is focused on developing improved varieties and rootstocks for sustainable and profitable production. Rootstock and scion performance trials have been established throughout the state. UF/IFAS citrus breeder Fred Gmitter touched on some of the experimental trials being done in Florida’s Indian River … Read More

Partnership Advances Citrus Variety Work

Ashley RobinsonAll In For Citrus Podcast, Varieties

Citrus studies are advancing in groves across Florida thanks to growers willing to collaborate and share their land with researchers. This type of partnership is rare and does not form overnight. Citrus grower Tom Hammond and University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences (UF/IFAS) citrus breeder and geneticist Fred Gmitter are a prime example of a dynamic partnership. … Read More

Acreage Reflects Consumer Demand

Tacy CalliesCalifornia Corner, Varieties

Shifting consumer trends have helped dictate which varieties are most popular among California citrus growers. Bruce Babcock, professor in the School of Public Policy at University of California, Riverside, explained that over the past 15 years or so, there have been some notable changes in California citrus acreage. “What we’ve seen is just explosive growth in acreage devoted to mandarins. … Read More

Trials to Seek Hamlin Alternative

Ernie NeffVarieties

Twenty-four citrus scions were approved by the Citrus Research and Development Foundation (CRDF) on March 23 for eventual use in multiple field trials around Florida. The purpose of the trials will be to find an early-season orange that is more tolerant of HLB disease than Hamlin, said CRDF Chief Operating Officer Rick Dantzler. Hamlin has long been the primary early-season … Read More

New Uruguayan Citrus Varieties for Licensing

Ernie NeffInternational, Varieties


The Uruguayan Citrus Consortium has issued an international call for licensing several new mandarin and orange varieties for their evaluation, development, production and commercialization in North America and/or the Mediterranean Basin. The mandarins are F7P3, F4P7, F3P8 and F2P3. The oranges are NVA033, NVA036 and SELP100. An exclusive license is being offered for a period of up to 10 years. … Read More

Indian River Variety Trial Attracts Visitors

Ernie NeffVarieties

Forty-nine growers and others participated in a self-guided, drive-through tour of the Millennium Block variety performance trial at the Indian River Research and Education Center (IRREC) on Oct. 9. “Several growers highlighted trees are off to a good start, and despite the fact they’re young, they could see clear differences,” said host and IRREC researcher Rhuanito “Johnny” Ferrarezi. Ferrarezi works … Read More

Varieties and Rootstocks Reviewed

Ernie NeffRootstocks, Varieties


In his virtual Citrus Expo presentation, Jude Grosser reviewed varieties and rootstocks showing promise for productivity in the face of HLB. Grosser is a University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences (UF/IFAS) plant breeder. His presentation was based on work done by him and fellow UF/IFAS researchers Bill Castle and Fred Gmitter. Grosser said UF/IFAS released OLL-20 “based … Read More

Is Parson Brown the Better Early Orange?

Ernie NeffVarieties

The old Parson Brown sweet orange variety is showing some characteristics that could make it more attractive than Hamlin, which has long been Florida’s leading early-season orange. “Observations made in commercial blocks in Polk and neighboring counties illustrate an improved canopy density, improved mature fruit retention and higher yields in the early-maturing Parson Brown sweet orange when compared to adjacent … Read More

Progress Toward HLB-Tolerant Citrus

Tacy CalliesVarieties


Largely due to the advent of huanglongbing (HLB) disease, Florida orange production has declined by over 70 percent in the last 10 years. According to experts, if the trend is not reversed, processing plants will not have enough fruit to maintain production and profitability, ultimately causing shutdowns. Currently, Florida law requires that orange juice be comprised of at least 90 … Read More

Top Picks From Citrus Variety Display Days

Tacy CalliesCitrus, Varieties


By Yu Wang, Fred Gmitter, Jude Grosser, Joon Hyuk Suh and Peter Chaires The Citrus Variety Display Days at the University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences (UF/IFAS) Citrus Research and Education Center (CREC) have been a unique platform to fulfill one of the core missions of the Florida citrus industry. These events help identify new selections with … Read More

The Ins and Outs of Tango

Tacy CalliesVarieties

The relatively mild winter conditions over the last two decades have led to a resurgence of interest in cold-hardy citrus in Florida. Growers were looking for a low-seeded citrus variety that was sweet, easy to peel and had moderate cold tolerance. In 2009, the first Florida nurseries were licensed to grow Tango, a low-seeded (less than five seeds per fruit … Read More

Coming Attraction: Florida Finger Limes

Tacy CalliesVarieties

Sweet oranges. Ruby red grapefruit. Sugar Belle mandarins. When one thinks of Florida citrus, these fruits immediately come to mind. But finger limes? A University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences (UF/IFAS) researcher believes that finger limes may be the next food trend that will continue to fortify Florida’s role as a citrus producer for the world. Manjul … Read More

Orange Opportunities

Tacy CalliesVarieties

New sweet orange cultivars for processing can be harvested throughout the Florida citrus season. By Jude Grosser, Fred Gmitter and Bill Castle Florida orange juice has always been the gold standard among the growing portfolio of fruit juices and blends available to consumers. However, the now endemic citrus greening disease or huanglongbing (HLB) threatens this status by causing reduced fruit … Read More

New Varieties and Juice Blends Discussed

Ernie NeffVarieties

Growers recently sampled and graded new fruit varieties, as well as some juice blends, at University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences (UF/IFAS) fruit display events. UF/IFAS plant breeder Jude Grosser commented on the fruit varieties and juice following a sampling event at the Citrus Research and Education Center. “It’s kind of neat because when we first started … Read More