New UF Extension Specialist Aims to Assist Small Fruit Growers

Karla Arboleda Pests, Strawberry, Top Posts

By Karla Arboleda Southwest Florida growers can expect help from new small fruit Extension specialist Sriyanka Lahiri. At the University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences (UF/IFAS) Gulf Coast Research and Education Center (GCREC), Lahiri works with strawberries and blueberries to develop a pest management program that uses less broad-spectrum insecticides. Appointed in February, Lahiri helps the small …

Muscadine Grape Pest Problems

Karla Arboleda Grapes, Pests, Top Posts

By Karla Arboleda Muscadine grapes are native crops to the deep Southeast and are naturally resistant to some pests. Among other pests, grapevine aphids and grape root borers tend to be the most common problems when growing muscadine grapes. Oscar Liburd, a professor at the University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences and fruit and vegetable entomologist, says …

Dealing with Spider Mites During Drought

Karla Arboleda Pests, Top Posts, Vegetables

By Karla Arboleda Spider mites will feed on crops when the weather is hot and dry, but growers should use cultural control tactics before considering pesticides. Droughts raise the likelihood of seeing spider mites, but so does using pesticides that kill beneficial spider mites. Ayanava Majumdar, Extension entomologist with the Alabama Cooperative Extension System at Auburn University, says spider mites …

Be on the Lookout for These Summer Pests

Abbey Taylor Alabama, Pests, Top Posts

Pests are relentless on crops all season long. However, during the hot summers, there are a few specific insects southeastern growers should be on the lookout for. Ayanava Majumdar, Extension entomologist with the Alabama Cooperative Extension System, recently collected data from sticky wing traps in the field. He reports that he found high levels of moths. Majumdar says the traps …

New Watermelon Rootstock Proves Pest, Disease Resistant

Karla Arboleda Pests, Top Posts, Watermelon

By Karla Arboleda Southeastern watermelon growers have struggled with fusarium wilt and nematodes for decades. A new rootstock may be the light at the end of the tunnel. Carolina Strongback, a new watermelon rootstock, is resistant toward fusarium wilt and nematodes. Researchers developed the watermelon line at the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Agricultural Research Service (ARS) and Clemson University. They …

How to Deal with Blueberries in Summer

Karla Arboleda Berries, Pests, Research, Top Posts

By Karla Arboleda Summer weather is in full swing in affecting Florida crops, and blueberries are no exception. During the summer, algal stem blotch can dominate blueberry fields if not handled quickly and properly. Doug Phillips, blueberry Extension coordinator for the University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences, explains the important steps to take. “In the summer when …

Whitefly-Transmitted Viruses Pose Problems in Vegetables

Abbey Taylor Pests, Top Posts, VSCNews magazine

By Rajagopalbabu Srinivasan The sweetpotato whitefly, commonly referred to as whitefly, is a major problem in vegetable production in Georgia and the southeastern United States. The whitefly can colonize hundreds of host plants in the landscape and has established itself year-round in this region. The pest has a short life cycle and is equipped with prolific reproductive capabilities. Consequently, its …