Category Archives: Column


Growing Limes in Florida: A Sweet and Sour History for Growers

Limes were once so plentiful in south Florida that one of the varieties grown here was known as a Key lime because it was grown around the Florida Keys.  Then, a “perfect storm” of Hurricane Andrew, citrus canker, and insect pests came together to push limes out of Florida.  However, it looks as if limes


Water Well During Droughts and Flooding

The unpredictable weather changes in Florida have affected not only the plants and grass, but also the water supply.  During the first part of the year many experienced record water lows.  However, the past couple of months have been wet and rainy!  Whether you are in an area that is still experiencing effects of the


Horse Management During Excessively Wet Weather

While we have all been relieved to see some rain after the recent drought, we’ve received a little more than we bargained for.  Excessively wet weather can present a number of problems for both your horse’s health and management. Standing water and muddy footing in high use areas in pastures and paths can promote hoof


Recognizing the Cream of the Crop with CARES Awards

Most farmers and ranchers that I know have a real love for the land and a strong desire to take good care of it. The land, after all, is how farmers and ranchers make a living— it’s their bread and butter, so to speak— so it’s not surprising that farmers and ranchers often are recognized


In Florida, It’s Watermelons, Watermelons Everywhere

FLORIDA LEADS the country in many crops and commodities, and one of the most important and underrated is watermelon. Florida is the top of four states— Texas, Georgia, and California being the other three— that produce over half of the country’s watermelon, and demand for the crop is continually increasing. According to the Ag Marketing


Having a Plan for Hurricane Season in the Food Supply Chain

As educational activities locally and statewide were winding down in late May, and folks looked forward to the long Memorial Day holiday weekend, activities of the emergency management kind were ratcheting upward. With the start of June came the start of the sixth-month 2017 Atlantic hurricane season. Emergency management officials far and wide renewed their


Crop Diversification in Central Florida— Where to Begin by DON HARDEN

Agridiversity is an increasingly important part of agriculture as the statistics show that the industry will need people from all backgrounds to consider agriculture as a career if we are going to feed the world’s growing population.   In the pages of this month’s Central Florida Ag News, you’ll read stories of the diversity of


April is Water Conservation Month

Water conservation plays an important role between balancing current and future water needs. This month is traditionally one of the driest of the year and marks the peak demand season for public water suppliers. During drier months, it is essential that we all play a role in water conservation. Water is a public resource that


U.S. Cow Herd Large and Young

The U.S. cow herd continues to grow at a very fast rate. An AgWeb.com piece examining the growth maintains the cow herd expansion from 2014 through 2016 was the biggest since the 1970s. The USDA–National Agricultural Statistics Service (NASS) Cattle Inventory report was released January 1. The report showed increased growth in cow herd, and


A smoother transition for passing on the family farming tradition

THE 2012 CENSUS OF AGRICULTURE counted 2.1 million farms in the U.S., with 97 percent being considered family-owned operations. While that designation could be any number of configurations of family members, siblings, and extended kin, the one that packs the most important punch is the multigenerational family farming business. We count the number of farming