Hurricane Ian Damage Assessment Gets Underway

Jim Rogers Agriculture, hurricane, Weather

By Frank Giles There is no question Hurricane Ian will go down as a historic catastrophe in Florida. It’s impact on agriculture will likely be historic as well. While it is too early to know the full extent of damage, AgNet Media is reaching out to growers and various industry associations and agencies to learn the extent of damage to …

Growers Anxious as Hurricane Approaches

Jim Rogers hurricane, Weather

Editor’s Note: This story was written before Hurricane Ian made landfall. Stay tuned for updates on how the storm has impacted Florida’s citrus industry. Citrus producers in South Georgia, North Florida and East Alabama are on “pins and needles” this week, according to grower Kim Jones. While the crop is about a month away from harvest, it is extremely vulnerable …

FAWN Expansion Underway

Jim Rogers Tip of the Week, Weather

By Rick Lusher The University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences Florida Automated Weather Network (FAWN) is a great resource for citrus growers. Its mission is to leverage timely, reliable and accurate weather data in support of effective agricultural decision-making and stewardship of natural, human and fiscal resources. In addition to weather information accessible in multiple databases, there …

Trying to Reason With Hurricane-Season Forecasts

Jim Rogers Weather

By Matt Smith It’s September in Florida, which means two things: the start to the latest “rebuilding year” for Florida football and the traditional peak of hurricane season. It was in September of 2017 that Hurricane Irma cut just about the worst path imaginable for Florida’s citrus growers. Along with causing physical damage to groves, Irma also contributed to disease …

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Slight Decrease in Hurricane Outlook

Jim Rogers hurricane, Weather

On Aug. 4, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) slightly decreased the likelihood of an above-normal Atlantic hurricane season to 60%. That is down from 65% in the initial NOAA outlook issued in May. The likelihood of near-normal activity has risen to 30% from 25% in May, and the chances remain at 10% for a below-normal season. NOAA’s update …

Update to Hurricane Forecast Issued

Jim Rogers hurricane, Weather

On Aug. 4, Colorado State University (CSU) decreased its hurricane forecast for Atlantic seasonal activity and landfall strike probability for 2022. But citrus growers and other agriculturists shouldn’t relax their guard because the CSU Department of Atmospheric Science continues to call for an above-average Atlantic hurricane season. NEW PROJECTIONSCSU now forecasts the Atlantic will have 18 named storms in 2022, …

Keep Cool in the Heat of Summer

Jim Rogers All In For Citrus Podcast, Weather

This summer has been a steamy one with some Florida locations breaking record highs. The latest episode of the All In For Citrus podcast took up the hot topic with Amir Rezazadeh, a University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences (UF/IFAS) fruit and field crops Extension agent. He addressed how heat can affect citrus trees and people working …

Protecting Citrus Trees From Heat Stress

Jim Rogers Tip of the Week, Weather

By Anirban Guha Heat stress could take a toll on citrus tree health and fruit yield. In Florida, the hot season lasts more than four months. Long, hot, oppressive summer days can heat up leaves and fruit and make the trees extra thirsty. Also, high soil evaporation, irregular rainfall and poor soil water-holding capacity can often lead to summer drought …

How to Handle Worker Heat Stress

Jim Rogers Labor, Weather

By Amir Rezazadeh Heat stress happens when the body is exposed to extreme heat in a hot environment. Heat-related illnesses include heat stroke, heat exhaustion, heat cramps and heat rashes. Other signs of heat stress include sweaty palms, fogged-up safety glasses and dizziness. Agricultural workers are at risk of heat stress. Those who are 65 years of age or older, …

Hurricane Threat Has Increased

Jim Rogers hurricane, Weather

Colorado State University (CSU) hurricane researchers on June 2 increased the number of named storms and hurricanes they expect for the 2022 Atlantic hurricane season from their initial outlook in April. The CSU Tropical Meteorology Project team is predicting 20 named storms in 2022. Of those, researchers expect 10 to become hurricanes and five to reach major hurricane strength (Saffir/Simpson …

NOAA Predicts Above-Average Hurricane Season

Jim Rogers hurricane, Weather

Forecasters at the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s (NOAA) Climate Prediction Center, a division of the National Weather Service, are predicting above-average hurricane activity this year. The Atlantic hurricane season runs from June 1 to Nov. 30. This year could be the seventh consecutive above-average hurricane season. NOAA predicts a 65% chance of an above-normal Atlantic hurricane season, a 25% …

What Southeast Citrus Growers Should Be Watching For

Jim Rogers Irrigation, Pests, Weather

A prolonged dry spell across the Southeast should have citrus growers ensuring their young trees are properly irrigated. But Jonathan Oliver, University of Georgia (UGA) assistant professor and small fruits pathologist, cautions growers about applying too much water. “The real young trees don’t have much of a root system, of course. It has been pretty dry. But you don’t want …

High Summer Temperatures Take a Toll on Trees

Jim Rogers Research, Weather

By Anirban Guha and Christopher Vincent A quick body temperature test is common these days before entering many workplaces, hospitals and clinics due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. The purpose is to screen people for fevers, usually with a non-contact infrared thermometer. Measurement of plant body temperatures also has become common for many field crops, not to screen for infectious …

Strong Season for Citrus Grower

Jim Rogers Fresh, Production, Weather

“The local market has improved since last season,” says citrus grower Chip Henry. “I’ve gained customers, and existing ones are buying more. When people know the fruit is being harvested, they seek out that local supply and want to support their local farmers.” Henry grows 12 acres of organic Valencias at McGuire Groves in Apopka, Florida, and sells his fruit …

How Weather Affects Pesticide Applications

Jim Rogers CEU, Pesticides, Weather

By Matt Smith Editor’s note: This article grants one continuing education unit (CEU) in the Core category toward the renewal of a Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services restricted-use pesticide license when the accompanying test is submitted and approved. Weather affects what pests you might be spraying for and the worker doing the spraying. There are environmental safety risks …

Extension Agents Still Seeing Damage From Freeze

Jim Rogers Florida, freeze, Weather

It often takes time for the damage associated with freeze events to manifest in citrus. That was the case for the late January freeze in Florida. While some growers escaped fairly unscathed, others suffered significant damage. The damage began to show in the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s March citrus crop forecast. The agency lowered expected production of Florida oranges this …

‘Irma Will Haunt Us’ Regarding Citrus Black Spot

Jim Rogers Citrus, Diseases, Weather

Citrus black spot (CBS) disease has only been found in five Southwest Florida counties, but that could change as a result of 2017’s Hurricane Irma, a researcher reiterated recently. University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences plant pathologist Megan Dewdney, in a Feb. 24 presentation, said “Irma will haunt us for a while.” She explained that Irma likely …

Keep an Eye Out for Postbloom Fruit Drop This Spring

Jim Rogers Fruit Drop, Tip of the Week, Weather

By Megan M. Dewdney Postbloom fruit drop (PFD) is a flower disease mainly caused by the fungus Colletotrichum acutatum. The fungus is present on citrus trees throughout the year but survives by producing resting structures on leaves and stems. The fungus becomes stimulated to produce spores by substances from the early flowers. These early spores infect the initial flowers and …

Survey Assessing Freeze Impact on Florida Ag

Jim Rogers Agriculture, Florida, Weather

The Florida Department of Economic Opportunity (DEO) on Feb. 3 activated the Business Damage Assessment Survey to assess the impact freezing temperatures had on the state’s agriculture businesses. Survey responses will allow the state to gather data and evaluate resources that impacted businesses may need to recover after the freezing weather that occurred the weekend of Jan. 28–30. “The agriculture …