Bucks Toward BMPs

Kelsey Fry Water

Cost-share assistance is available from several sources for growers looking to implement improvements to best management practices. By Tacy Callies The names of the organizations and programs that provide funding to Florida citrus growers for best management practices (BMPs) projects — SWFWMD, FARMS, EQIP, etc. — can sound like a big bowl of alphabet soup. But in reality, they represent …


Getting Water pH Correct in the Face of HLB

Ernie Neff Citrus Greening, HLB Management, Irrigation, Water

University of Florida (UF) researcher Kelly Morgan discusses a study of how citrus growers are adjusting irrigation water pH levels, and what pH levels seem to work best. The acid level of citrus irrigation water has become an important consideration since HLB was discovered in Florida groves in 2005. “Jim Graham (a fellow UF researcher) has been conducting a survey …


New Peace River Executive Discusses Citrus Issues

Ernie Neff Citrus Greening, Research, Water

Steve Smith became executive director of the Peace River Valley Citrus Growers Association (PRVCGA) in early March. He discusses some of the issues the association will address. “Obviously the research is a major focus right now with greening. That’s at the top of everybody’s list, trying to find some solutions.” Water issues historically have been a major focus for the …


What Growers Need to Know About BMPs Now

Ernie Neff Citrus, Water

Virtually all Florida citrus growers have signed up to participate in the Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services’ (FDACS) best management practices (BMPs) for water quality and water quantity. “They’ve done an extremely good job over the last 20 years that we’ve had BMPs,” says University of Florida researcher Kelly Morgan, the statewide BMP coordinator. “The (state) water act …

citrus greening

Importance of Leaf Tissue and Water Analysis

Ernie Neff Citrus, Water

Oscar Ruiz with Waypoint Analytical discusses the importance of leaf tissue and water analysis. “Leaf tissue analysis is important because we can actually gauge in-season what the plant is capable of uptaking,” he says. That information, along with information garnered from soil sampling, allows the grower to “fine tune the fertility program and adjust it accordingly,” he says. “I recommend …

Replant incentives

Citrus Grower: Tree Replant Incentives Are Beneficial

Ernie Neff HLB Management, Irrigation, Water

State and federal programs giving citrus growers incentives to replant and a state program designed to eliminate abandoned groves were discussed at a November 1 workshop in Lakeland. The program was hosted by Florida Citrus Mutual. Grower James “Hoss” Morgan, procurement director for Wm. G. Roe & Sons, Inc., likes the programs. “All three of these are very beneficial if …

HLB replanting

Citrus Replanting Incentives in Face of HLB

Ernie Neff Citrus Greening, Water

More than 50 attended a November 1 workshop in Lakeland to learn about incentives to induce citrus tree replanting. Replanting is needed to replace trees lost to HLB and other problems. Kayla Nickerson of the Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services (FDACS) talks about a relatively new incentive – her agency’s Citrus Grove Renovation/Re-establishment Support Program. Nickerson says, “We’re …

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

Tacy Callies Freeze Protection, Water

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 …

Jim Graham Awarded Researcher of the Year

Josh McGill Water

Jim Graham, soil microbiologist for the University of Florida’s Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences, was recognized at the 73rd annual Florida Fruit and Vegetable Association (FFVA) convention for his years of service to the industry. Graham was named FFVA Researcher of the Year at the association’s award luncheon. His recent research has led to some major discoveries on the …

South Florida Algae Bloom

Kelsey Fry Agriculture, Water

The algal blooms in Lake Okeechobee, the Caloosahatchee River and the Indian River Lagoon have gained national coverage and become quite a controversial topic. The blue-green algae, called cyanobacteria, has affected individuals, businesses and farming in South Florida. Charles Shinn, director of government and community affairs for the Florida Farm Bureau Federation, says that Farm Bureau is concerned about the …

Available Cost-Share Funds from FDACS

Kelsey Fry Legislative, Water

The Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services’ (FDACS) Office of Agricultural Water Policy has released a statement that pertains to producers within certain districts who are willing to purchase equipment and be honored up to a 75 percent reimbursement on the equipment invoice. The funds are being administered through Marion County and Putnam County soil and water conservation districts. …

What to Consider When Putting a New Grove in Place

Josh McGill Citrus, Water

By: Mongi Zekri There is a high degree of planning and preparation that goes into making a new citrus tree planting successful. Site preparation, installation of an irrigation system, selection of varieties and rootstocks, tree spacing, purchasing trees from reputable nurseries, and tree planting and care are all important. Site Preparation The planting site should be well prepared. Soils at …

Waters of The United States

Wotus Rule Disapproval

expoadmin Citrus, Water

WOTUS Rule, House Passes Resolution to Disapprove Today, the U.S. House of Representatives passed a joint resolution to disapprove the Waters of the United States rule under a Congressional Review Act. This resolution would nullify the rule submitted by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and U.S. Army Corps of Engineers to redefine “Waters of the United States” under the Clean …

Water Farming Success

expoadmin Citrus, Water

Two Indian River County Sites Approved for Water Farming Funding On January 12, the St. Johns River Water Management District’s Governing Board approved funding for two sites in Indian River County to establish water farms to help reduce nitrogen and phosphorus being dumped into the Indian River Lagoon. The nutrient-rich fresh water being dumped into the lagoon causes massive algae …