On June 28, the UF/IFAS extension office in Lake Alfred hosted more than 70 individuals at their Citrus Youth Day to learn some science and gain better insight into the citrus industry. The Citrus Youth Day, now in its second year, had double the number of students who attended its debut last year. Students from
Florida Citrus Growers Fighting Greening with Plant Nutrition, Newer Varieties The Florida citrus industry is holding on, relying on nutritional methods and newer varieties to buy time until more effective solutions to citrus greening are found. A company with deep roots in the industry, Tamiami Citrus LLC has recommitted to citrus in spite of greening,
Local Teen, Emily Turner, Knows What it Takes to Be a Barrel Racing Champion Emily Turner has a lot of good influences in her life, and she credits those good influences with helping her and her horse—Honey Blossom Wonder, or Belle for short—to win the 2017-2018 Florida High School Rodeo Association Barrel Racing Championship. “I’m
Getting to Know Polk County Cattlemen’s Association Sweetheart, Paxton Evans Each year young ladies around the state have a chance to apply for their county Cattlemen’s Association Sweetheart, where if selected, they will represent their county’s cattle industry for a full year and compete in the State Cattlemen’s Sweetheart pageant that is held during the
Pat Schirard Becomes Newest Member of FL Citrus Commission Meet Governor Scott’s appointment to the Florida Citrus Commission, Pat Schirard. In mid-May, Governor Rick Scott appointed new member, Pat Schirard, to the Florida Citrus Commission, filling a vacant seat previously held by Lee Bouldin. Schirard’s term will span from his appointment date on May 24
Proving the Power of Beef One Race at a Time by MATT COBBLE For a long time, beef was considered the king of meats. A certain fast food chain once asked its competitors “where’s the beef?” A particular grocery chain proudly proclaimed themselves as “the beef people.” The Yeoman Warders, guards at the Tower of
Blueberry Production Up In Spite of Environmental Obstacles by CHERYL ROGERS Environmental challenges shed some Florida blueberry growers’ hopes for an abundant crop this year, slashing anticipated yields statewide by about 30 percent. But overall, about 20 million pounds of blueberries were picked, up from about 19 million pounds in 2017, says Brittany Lee, president
Tips for Managing Your Equine’s Health During the Rainy Season by TERESA SCHIFFER Rainy season is here in Central Florida, and for horse owners, that can mean more time in the stable and less time in the saddle. Thunderstorms, muddy fields, and mosquitoes can all mean problems for horses. So what should you do when
Dr. LuJean Waters is a big animal veterinarian making a living in what used to be a man’s profession. Just two miles from her family’s old homestead, LuJean Waters practices veterinarian medicine on large animals, including cattle, horses, sheep and goats. A 7th generation Floridian, descended from a family that migrated to the Lake Garfield
Emily McKenna Lassiter is a woman deeply dedicated to her family, and the family citrus business. She also has a strong affection for citrus groves. And no wonder; her childhood and family memories center around the groves, and now she makes her living in the business. “One of the things I love is driving down
Meet Dr. Martha Rhodes Roberts, a leader in Florida agriculture. Agriculture is a leading industry in Florida, and The Sunshine State’s ag industry wouldn’t be where it is today without the leadership of Dr. Martha Rhodes Roberts. With an entire career dedicated to agriculture in Florida, Dr. Roberts has long been an icon in Florida
My Ag Story started very early in life, I was born and raised in the cattle industry. My family has been involved in the cattle industry in Florida for over 60 years- owning and operating Cattlemen’s Livestock Auction Market in Lakeland, Fl, while also running our cow/calf operation. I owe my knowledge of the cattle
Katie Hennessy is an extraordinary asset to Polk County’s agricultural community. She is an equine and large animal veterinarian who operates the Polk Equine mobile clinic in Lake Wales. Hennessy is a compassionate caretaker of these great creatures with a long history of involvement with horses and other animals. Hennessy grew up in Illinois, in
Ranchers facing post-Irma challenges, but recovery may take awhile for stressed cattle. By Cheryl Rogers Hurricane Irma caused some immediate damage to Polk County area farms and ranches, where owners and caretakers initially were kept busy repairing fences, damaged roofs, and culverts. But, in the long term, the most serious effects may have been to
What Side Are You Riding With? by TERESA SCHIFFER Mules versus horses, which is the better beast? There are folks on either side of the argument that can make a passionate case for each. Let’s take a look at some of the attributes of mules so you can decide where you land in this debate.
Raising Goats and Chickens on AM Acres by MARY TOOTHMAN When Maria and Tony Iannucci began to look for property and the lifestyle change that would come with it, they knew they’d found it at the five-acre Lake Wales site now known as AM Acres. “We wanted out of the zero-lot-line environment and found the
Researchers are Working Together to Remodel the Citrus Genome in Hopes of Fighting HLB by ERIKA ALDRICH If you’re a scientist associated with the citrus industry, your efforts are likely geared towards finding a workable solution to huánglóngbìng (HLB), otherwise known as citrus greening. If your research also happens to have applications in other areas
Congress Finally Passes Bill to Help Florida Farmers in Wake of Irma by REPRESENTATIVE TOM ROONEY When Florida citrus growers looked ahead to their crop projections last year, the future looked bright. This was going to be the year – the year citrus production would finally rebound from citrus greening. But in September, disaster struck Florida’s Heartland.
There is No Horsing Around When it Comes to This Group of Dedicated Students By Teresa Schiffer In an age of social media obsession and digital absorption, sometimes it seems that all the kids do is play with their gadgets. A dedicated group of young people at Lake Wales High School is breaking that stereotype
How Local Members Are Making A Difference in Central Florida by THE POLK COUNTY FFA FEDERATION OFFICERS Hi there, we are the Polk County FFA Federation officer team! We have the opportunity to work with students across Polk County through chapter programs, the Polk County Youth Fair, and at leadership conferences. This year as
Friendships can be Formed, Lessons Learned and Time Management Skills Developed with Fair Experiences by MARY TOOTHMAN To fair visitors, it may be all about the yummy food, petting animals, and viewing the neat displays. However, behind the scenes, fair days and showing animals can be a lot of work and a way for youth
If you have never been to the Polk County Youth Fair, or any youth fair in our region, you’re missing a one-of-a-kind experience. It is a must-do for any person— from the young to young-at-heart. Kids and youth from all around gather under one roof to show their livestock, crafts, plants, and more. Here’s your
Growers are hoping the forecast will stay on its steady course by ERIKA ALDRICH If the latest USDA Citrus forecast is any indication, the Florida citrus industry continues to be adversely affected by long-term challenges—citrus greening—and recent disasters—Hurricane Irma. With four months’ worth of citrus forecasts in the history books, it’s easy to see the
Whether for Show, Breeding, or Recreation, there are Many Reasons to Consider Owning this Breed by TERESA SCHIFFER If you’ve ever dreamed of owning a horse, a Miniature Horse could be your dream come true. Whether you are a first-time horse owner or a veteran breeder, the modern American Miniature Horse is an excellent breed
Growers Looking Forward to Good Season by CHERYL ROGERS Damage to the Plant City area strawberry crop appears to have been minimal when temperatures dipped below freezing in January. “We’re not at peak production, but we’re pretty close,” says Joel Connell, production manager at Grimes Farms, where temperatures dipped to 22 degrees Fahrenheit. “Our freeze
by MARY TOOTHMAN We asked Sweetheart Milli Jones, 21 and a junior agricultural education and communications major at the University of Florida, for suggestions on getting young people psyched about the cattle industry. Her recent experience working as a substitute teacher has enhanced her insight into how to give young people positive ideas about the industry.
UF/IFAS Plant Camp Offers Florida Educators a Close Look at Florida Flora and Fauna by GRACE BOGGESS The University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences (UF/IFAS) has opened applications for its popular and free 2018 Plant Camp and will be accepted until February 18. The five-day workshop takes place from June 11 to
Local Citrus Grower Named 2018 4R Advocate by TFI by ERIKA ALDRICH Fertilizer has always played an important role in agriculture, and it’s more important than ever with a growing world population and the need to grow more on less land. It’s also become apparent that the unsystematic use of fertilizers is bad for the
Homeowners Get Growing with Plants for Pollinators, Succulents, Foodscaping, and More story by CHERYL ROGERS photos by LUIS BETANCOURT HEDGES out of rosemary? Purple cabbage interspersed with croton shrubs? Don’t be surprised. People seem to be looking for something healthy— and something different— in the landscaping and gardening scene. Vegetable gardening, a long-term trend, continues
Beautiful Ornamentals that are Dangerous for Livestock by TERESA SCHIFFER Raising livestock can be a tricky business. There are a lot of details to attend to, especially when it comes to proper nutrition. It can be tempting to simply turn creatures out into the field and let them rummage on their own, but this can
Florida Equine Community Reported More Than 40 Cases in Past Year by MARY TOOTHMAN The Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services has confirmed several recent additional premises with strangles in the state — bringing the total number to 42 in the past year. Strangles, a highly contagious upper respiratory disease found in horses, was
by COMMISSIONER OF AGRICULTURE ADAM H. PUTNAM Florida is home to more than 1.5 million veterans and more than 20 military bases, and my goal is for the Sunshine State to be the most veteran-friendly state in the nation. While there truly is not enough that we can do to show our gratitude, we should
IF YOU’RE WORKING in ag, you’d be hard-pressed not to have heard of precision agriculture. Whether it’s the latest piece of technology or a review of the benefits of precision ag, the topic is front and center in agriculture news. One benefit that is often discussed is the potential for profits and what do they
Florida Growers have been installing their own weather stations in increasing numbers. With help from the UF/IFAS Florida Automated Weather Network (FAWN), they have been able to more accurately determine when to irrigate to protect their crops from freezes. “The onsite data is exponentially more useful,” explains Rick Lusher, FAWN director. But this fiscal year,
Farm Tech and Environmental Responsibility Come Together: Florida Blue Farms Receive Accolade from FDACS for their Agri-Business Practices
THERE ARE SOME pairings that take no thought at all. If someone asked you to say the first thing that came to your mind after the words “peanut butter,” odds are you would immediately reply, “jelly.” Along those same lines, if someone said, “citrus, ”you more than likely would reply, “Sunshine State,” or if someone
Polk County Team Competes for State Ranch Rodeo Championship Title by, ERIKA ALDRICH Hurricane Irma changed a lot of folks’ plans in Florida in the month of September, but the not the Florida Ranch Rodeo Finals. With many different events closing or being postponed, there were fears the storm may have affected the holding of
A new program hosted by the Florida Small Business Development Center is helping local farmers and producers to maximize their growth potential through export sales! This program provides a scholarship to qualified recipients, which facilities the development of a uniquely customized Agribusiness Export Marketing Plan. These plans assist “new-to-export” and “currently exporting” growers and value-added
Southern Staples For Your Farmhouse Table There’s nothing like good, old Southern cookin’ to make a body feel satisfied – physically and mentally. You just want to kick back and put your feet up for a while. Some of it is the raw ingredients that say stability and love – chicken, green beans, sweet potatoes
Local Large Animal Vet Specializing in Bovine and Equine Species Recognized for his Service When Dr. Robert “Doc” Gukich was honored with a prestigious award recently, he said he was taken aback because he didn’t realize anyone had particularly noticed what he was doing at his veterinary practice. But people had indeed noticed. In recognition
Grove Owners Take in the Damage and Map Out a Strategy for Bringing Fields Back to Full Health It was supposed to be a good year for Florida’s citrus growers. With post bloom fruit drop under control, some growers were expecting a rebound— despite the dreaded citrus greening disease. But then came Hurricane Irma, wreaking
Agriculture Taking its Position as Region Plans to Meet Future Water Needs Florida is surrounded by water, but, with current resources, it’s not expected to meet future demands for some 1,100 million gallons a day in Central Florida. So government leaders and landowners are attempting to iron out their differences, among the administrative complications that
Florida Cattle Ranchers Work To Preserve Natural Resources From goldfish to formalized best management practices, farmers and ranchers are working together to save resources that the land has provided. According to thisfarmcares.org: Best Management Practices are a set of guidelines that advises producers on how to manage the water, nutrient, and pesticides they are
A Tradition as Old as Time, Florida Cowboys Compete to Show the Public What it is Like on a Working Cattle Operation The Hardee County Cattlemen’s Association Ranch Rodeo is not your typical bull riding, entertainment rodeo. It’s a fun way to present Florida ranching, and the unique Cracker Cowman way of life to the
Florida Dairy Farmers, Take Note: A Hot Cow is an Unhappy Cow If your dairy cows are not meeting your expectations, you may want to invest in an air-conditioning unit for the cow clubhouse— especially for the females who are expecting and keep that thermostat set fairly low. The results may be well worth any
The Citrus Growing Project of the Polk County Youth Fair is teaching young people responsibility and agricultural lessons through raising citrus trees. Passing knowledge on to the next generation is important in any field, and it’s especially vital to the citrus industry in Florida. With the many innovations that are taking place in growing citrus,
An Alternative to the Traditional Greenhouse Has Been Getting Attention from Growers Across the State by Providing More Environmental Control than an Open Field High tunnels are considered an intermediary between greenhouses and open fields. Most growers use high tunnels in conjunction with growing in the ground as opposed to the hydroponics often found in
Some Growers Go Undercover, While Others Look to Fresh Fruit Production to Diversify Facing a decline in citrus production in the wake of citrus greening, some of Florida’s growers are turning to protective coverings to block the Asian psyllid that spreads the dreaded Huanglongbing or HLB virus. Ten Florida citrus growers have banded together
Barn Manager at the Florida Agricultural Museum Offers These Reminders for Parents and Kids Now that school is out and summer is here, the kids are going to need something to do to keep them busy. Many kids love horses, so equine summer camp is very popular. While they are generally safe for kids to
Farmer Encourages Fellow Growers to Apply for Tree Assistance Program (TAP) and Replant Ask anyone in the business and they will tell you: making a living in the citrus industry is not for the faint of heart. Growers have battled Mother Nature throughout history, struggling to stay in business after experiencing damages left by
Florida Blueberry Growers Vying with Competitors for Lucrative Spring Marketing Window AS FLORIDA’S BLUEBERRY industry matures, increased competition is making it harder for growers to realize dreams of blue gold. “I think there’s going to be a bit of a shakeout in the blueberry business going forward,” asserts Ryan Atwood, a blueberry grower with about
Event Offers Unique Insight into Relevant Topics and Career Opportunities On Thursday, June 22, 2017, from 8:15 a.m. to 12:30p.m., students 8-18 years old will have the opportunity to learn about Florida citrus during the Citrus Youth Day.
University of Florida nutrition expert says a glass of milk packs a ‘nutritious punch’ HEALTH-CONSCIOUS PEOPLE may fire up special juicers or buy prepared beverages that are touted to benefit the body— but a strong case can also be made for a good, old-fashioned glass of milk. As National Dairy Month is recognized in June,
Beef Producers Rise Above the Challenges to Preserve and Prosper the Ranching Way of Life Florida born-and-bred beef has made its way into the grocery under the brand name Florida Cattle Ranchers, LLC. In response to consumers’ interest in locally-grown food, 13 ranchers have banded together to develop this Florida beef brand. “Millennials, they care
A Ranch Where a Variety of Equine Training Methods and Cultures Converge If you’re looking for an example of diversity in a field, look no further than Spring Lane Ranch in south Lakeland. Owners Heather and Darrel Shea have brought together a team of horse trainers who exemplify the notion that a variety of styles
Youth and Ranchers Are Gearing Up for the Commercial Steer Show Agricultural fairs have a rich legacy in Polk County. It was in the 1940s that the community came together to fund a pavilion in Bartow specifically for young people to compete in agricultural and domestic projects. Over the years, the Polk County Youth Fair
Florida Ag Industry Sees a Rising Trend in African-American Farmers Seventy-nine-year-old Herman Hargrett Sr., a retired ag teacher, is one of the few black farmers in Florida. But their numbers are growing.
Celebrating Women in Ag and Female Leadership at UF/IFAS Agriculture is in Dr. Jeanna Mastrodicasa’s blood. Each year, her grandfather would plant a robust garden for the family to enjoy in the Massachusetts town she grew up in. On the other side of her family, her great grandmother packed grapefruit in Indian River County. Dr.
CATTLE RANCHING in Florida has a long and storied past that may surprise you. The first cattle were brought here with Ponce De Leon and the Spanish explorers in 1521. Those seven Andalusians were likely the ancestors of the Florida scrub cattle that later became the herds of both Seminole natives and pioneer settlers.
Advice from a Florida Agricultural Hall of Fame inductee for the next generation of ag leaders
RECENTLY, FOUR TITANS of agriculture were inducted into the Florida Agricultural Hall of Fame. Among them was W. Bernard Lester, age 78, who was born in Havana and graduated from UF CALS. Lester has been described by John Hoblick, president of the Florida Farm Bureau, as a “tireless advocate on behalf of Florida agriculture for
Cassidy Polston joins family in cattle-raising tradition CASSIDY POLSTON AND her family were living a typical suburban lifestyle. As a little girl, she was thinking about becoming a lawyer or a chef. But something changed when her oldest sister Brittany bought a cow while attending Lakeland High School.
THE FOUR-LEAF CLOVER, a rare variation of its three-leaf counterpart, has long been recognized as a symbol of good luck. If a person stumbles upon this treasure, then the holder is sure to be the recipient of a most fortuitous blessing. As if she had that lucky charm in her pocket all along, one 4-H
ARE YOU THINKING ABOUT signing up your child for horseback riding lessons? Before they get in the saddle, make sure your young, novice rider is prepared, and remember these three things:
A ROBOT THAT CAN PICK strawberries may ease the industry’s labor problem and revolutionize the way crops are harvested. “This machine itself is being designed specifically for the strawberry,” says Gary Wishnatzki, a third-generation family-owner of Plant City’s Wish Farms, who is partnering in the project. “We’re not going to stop with strawberries … There’s
Miss Florida Citrus Stephanie Capon wrapping up an exciting and industry-promoting year STEPHANIE CAPON has only two more months left in her role as Miss Florida Citrus 2016, but she will forever be part of a unique group of women who have worked side by side with the industry to help market Florida’s citrus throughout
THE RANGE CATTLE RESEARCH AND EDUCATION CENTER in Ona recently held its 75th Anniversary Celebration and Field Day. John Arthington’s leadership as center director is becoming a bigger and bigger part of the center’s history. He’s been there 18 years, and he’s led the center for 11. He’s only the fourth director in Range Cattle
USDA program gives boost to farmers and the conservation cause STEWARDSHIP of our natural resources — environmentally and agriculturally — is an inherent and shared responsibility among everyone here on planet Earth. The combined results of people’s actions can either deplete resources or, through combined efforts and energies, be lent toward implementing sustainable solutions for
Miniature horses have their own special care and considerations FOR ANYONE who’s ever dreamed about owning a horse, would the considerations include miniature, or dwarf, horses? What follows are 10 key questions about miniature horses and an answer to each of them.
MANY YEARS AGO, Florida citrus was sold in dimly lit warehouses around 3 or 4 a.m. It was packed in wooden crates with bright, colorful labels that attracted the buyers’ eyes and helped sell the fruit. “The label was the first thing they would see,” says Brenda Eubanks Burnette, executive director of Florida Citrus Hall
Frostproof Middle-Senior High School Ag Department Earns Polk County Farm Bureau honor THE FROSTPROOF MIDDLE-SENIOR HIGH SCHOOL Agriculture Department has been honored by the Polk County Farm Bureau as its 2016 Outstanding Ag Program of the Year. The school ag program received the award Oct. 11 during the PCFB annual meeting in Bartow.
Polk County Farm Bureau honors Paul Reed as the year’s outstanding agriculture teacher PAUL REED’S LOVE for his agriculture program during high school translated into an agriculture teaching career that spanned more than three decades. Today, the recently retired Haines City High School teacher is the Polk County Farm Bureau’s 2016 Outstanding Ag Teacher of
Citrus growers are committed to replanting and all-in on the numbers game against greening SOME CITRUS EXPERTS are expecting the smallest crop in 53 years this year, as the industry continues to battle citrus greening disease and other challenges, such as post-bloom fruit drop (PFD). Though the numbers look grim, there are positive signs for
More Florida farms and ranches open doors to the public with retreats, attractions, events, and more TWO HUNDRED YEARS AGO, cattlemen drove their herds to a remote part of central western Highlands County on their way to the market and port at what is now Fort Myers. Their destination was a corral under an oak
Olivia Glenn and her mount compete at the Southern Regional 4-H Championships IF YOU’VE BEEN RIDING HORSES since the age of six like sixteen-year-old Olivia Glenn has, competing in the Southern Regional 4-H Horse Championships is a big deal. “It was very exciting,” shares Glenn. A sophomore at Winter Haven High School, Glenn advanced through
Turning a new leaf for the love of gardening: Bok Tower Gardens inspires visitors with new attraction
BOK TOWER GARDENS and the University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences (UF/IFAS) teamed up to display the “fruits of their labor” recently at the grand opening of the new garden section at the Lake Wales attraction.
Scientists and growers get ready for the Florida Ag Expo THE AGENDA for the Florida Ag Expo at the Gulf Coast Research and Education Center (GCREC) on November 2 includes a session on the Q-biotype whitefly, but not because it’s already wreaking havoc on your fruit and vegetable crops.
FLORIDA CITRUS PACKERS, INC.. named Frank M. Hunt, III, the 2016 recipient of the John T. Lesley Award for Excellence. The award is the packinghouse trade association’s highest, for an individual making sustained and outstanding contributions to the Florida citrus industry, and has long been given to the top leaders of the industry.
LIKE A PLANT STARTS as a seed, sometimes an idea starts as an initiative before it takes root. About 17 years ago, colleagues with a similar desire used their initiative to form Restaurants Against Hunger Community Farm to raise money to help The Mission in Winter Haven.
U.S. senators sponsor legislation for the citrus industry AS FLORIDA CITRUS growers continue to battle citrus greening, U.S. Sen. Marco Rubio (R-FL) has joined U.S. Sen. Bill Nelson (D-FL), the original sponsor, in championing the Emergency Citrus Disease Response Act. That act will allow growers to immediately expense the cost of planting new citrus instead
YOU WANT TO BE AS COOL as a cucumber when working with your show cattle, and an important part is heading off heat stress in your animals. In Florida, the conditions are just about always ripe for creating heat stress in your show cattle.
Recent cases of Salmonella Enteritidis linked to backyard flocks WHETHER IT’S DUE to the high cost of living, the desire to lead a healthier lifestyle, or simply for the enjoyment of producing one’s own food and being near nature, more and more backyard chicken coops are popping up in suburbia. This “back-to-nature” trend has enabled
EASTERN EQUINE ENCEPHALITIS (EEE) has claimed its third victim of the year in Polk County, and officials are recommending that horse owners take precautions, as more cases are expected. A six-year-old Arabian, with no EEE vaccine history or recent travel, began showing clinical signs on June 19 and was subsequently euthanized the same day. It’s
Two CREC professors map out how certain varieties could hold the key to more HLB-tolerant citrus trees FOR THOSE IN THE FLORIDA citrus industry, some say it’s the 11th hour. Citrus harvests are down 70 percent and a survey revealed an 80 percent rate of tree infection throughout Florida. However, the quest to find a
Sifting for the silver lining amid the challenges of Florida’s blue gold FLORIDA BLUEBERRY GROWERS had a tough season, coming into the marketplace late, with about 30 percent of their usual crop. Some harvest workers moved north, which left many growers turning to offer u-pick to harvest their crop or leave berries on the bushes.
Be ready with these before, during, and after storm-prep reminders FOR GROWERS, RANCHERS, AND PET AND LIVESTOCK OWNERS, hurricane preparedness begins long before the storm makes landfall and continues even after the final tree stops swaying. From maintaining grove tree size and keeping tools on-hand for repairing and resetting, to having pets micro-chipped and the
Overcoming challenges and researching the way to future success AN UNUSUALLY WARM WINTER is putting the bite on peach growers across the South. Harvests came in late throughout Florida, where many growers saw zero chill hours and record-breaking warm temperatures according to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA).
How Megan Handley has been — and plans to stay — involved in agriculture AGRICULTURE is a most important industry, but statistics show women are underrepresented in leadership roles in agriculture across the United States. Programs like 4-H and FFA provide a framework for encouraging young girls to take on leadership roles in agriculture, which
Article sponsored by Southern Citrus Nurseries, 5600 Lake Trask Road, Dundee, FL 33838 863-439-3694 • www.TreeDefender.com Southern Citrus Nurseries of Dundee develops tree cover for young citrus trees THOMAS “TOMMY” THAYER, JR., AND SCOTT “SCOTTY” THOMPSON, the creators of The Tree Defender, have an analogy they like to share when they talk about their innovative
UF agriculture specialist sheds light on new developments in livestock and forage practices ASHLEY FLUKE is the UF/IFAS Osceola County Extension Agent who was in charge of the recent Forage Field Day, held on April 1 in Kenansville, Florida. Central Florida Ag News asked her to discuss recent developments and trial results, which could enhance
Recent study reveals potential for not-from-concentrate juice WITH 1.36 BILLION residents, China is the most populated country in the world. It may come as a surprise, however, to learn that such a high value market for U.S. agriculture does not include a single glass of fresh Florida orange juice — at least, not yet. Dr.
THE SCENE IS is a young cattleman riding his stock horse, leaping off the side of a mountain after the wild brumbies in “The Man from Snowy River,” a film based on ranch life in the 1880s of unsettled Australia. It’s dramatic, it’s exhilarating, and it’s a beautiful scene of horseman and horse, and though
THE END OF APRIL marks the beginning of watermelon harvest season in Central Florida, and for growers like Andy McDonald, it’s especially sweet. That’s because McDonald double crops, planting the watermelon seedlings in his Plant City strawberry fields. McDonald takes advantage of any lull in strawberry picking in early February to place the plants into
Scientists start a new hops yard with the hope of creating a new Florida agricultural commodity THE HUNT for the next great Florida agriculture success story is unfolding in Wimauma. The storybook ending the University of Florida’s Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences hopes to write is one in which our state becomes a major
Student and Polk County Youth Fair participant, Paige Gebhardt, shares her 4-H journey THERE’S A SAYING that it takes a village to raise a child, but most people would agree that adding “a barn” to that piece of wisdom — both figuratively and literally — is a good idea. For those in agriculture, being “raised
Vic Story, Jr., Bill Castle and Jack Norris make it easy to understand why we love Florida citrus WHEN YOU POUR that glass of orange juice, do you ever wonder about the grove that it came from or the farmer that grew it? In today’s fast-paced world, it’s easy to forget the toils of others,
Florida Citrus Mutual encourages growers to vote ‘Yes’ FROM NOW until February 11, 2016, citrus growers have the opportunity to vote on the continuation of the CRDF — the Citrus Research and Development Foundation. According to the Florida state statute, a referendum on the continuation of the CRDF must be held every six years. The
How one recipient of the Agricultural-Environmental Leadership Award is conserving our state’s resources THOSE IN AGRICULTURE have long been stewards of the lands that they utilize to raise a crop or turn out livestock to pasture, but some go above and beyond the norm. In Florida, ag producers who utilize “environmentally innovative farming practices” are
Still years out from a fix for HLB, biotechnology offers a possible solution IT’S NOT a silver bullet, but genetically modified citrus trees could prove the most effective of the many tools developed by the University of Florida so far for the salvation of the citrus industry in the HLB era. The transgenic citrus trees
How biotechnology, drones, and plant breeding are advancing agriculture TECHNOLOGY has the ability to change the world, and it will likely be needed to protect it too. It’s a sentiment that those in Florida agriculture know all too well. With challenges like citrus greening, laurel wilt in avocados, and high consumer expectations for fruits and
THE PLANNNED SALE of a herd of Ona White Angus cattle, a new and Central Florida-hardy breed of cattle, has been canceled.
Students get ready for contests through school offered by the UF Department of Animal Sciences EACH YEAR, The University of Florida’s Department of Animal Sciences operates informational and competitive youth programs for students within a 4-H Club or FFA Chapter. The UF/DAS recently held its annual 4-H/FFA Horse-Judging School, where students learned about judging at