Rid Your Crop of Caterpillars

Abbey Taylor Fruit, Pests, Research, Top Posts, Vegetables

Different species of caterpillars can be detrimental to fruit and vegetable crops in the Southeast. Ayanava Majumdar, Extension entomologist with the Alabama Cooperative Extension Service, says although recent storms in the Southeast have slowed down moth activity, pests are still looming due to the heat. According to Majumdar, armyworms seem to be active. Beet armyworms are usually the first insects …

Microbial Communities to Be Discussed at Citrus Expo

Abbey Taylor Research, Top Posts

Microbial communities are at the center of Sarah Strauss’ presentations during the Citrus Expo educational program. Strauss, an assistant professor of soil microbiology at the Southwest Florida Research and Education Center, will speak in the vegetable and specialty crop session at Citrus Expo. Strauss will focus on microbial communities in vegetable crops. She will discuss how manipulation of these communities …

A New Race of Fusarium Wilt Brings Trouble

Abbey Taylor Research, Top Posts, Watermelon

Fusarium wilt has been a problem in watermelon for several years. A new race of the disease makes it even more of a struggle to deal with. Nicholas Dufault, assistant professor and Extension specialist in the Plant Pathology Department at the University of Florida (UF), says race three fusarium wilt was recently found in the United States. According to Dufault, …

Jack Payne on New SWFREC Director

Abbey Taylor Research, Top Posts

By Jack Payne, jackpayne@ufl.edu, @JackPayneIFAS Kelly Morgan is a more reliable water source than rain is. You don’t know when or if you’ll get water from the sky, but what Morgan can teach you makes every drop you have go farther. His focus on the farmer as customer is what has made him so successful as the state’s best management …

Phil Stansly to Discuss Whiteflies at Citrus Expo

Abbey Taylor Pests, Research, Top Posts

Whiteflies vector diseases that can deteriorate crops and drastically reduce yield. Whiteflies have proven to be a major pest in Florida tomatoes and cucurbits. According to Stansly, whiteflies can cause severe problems in tomatoes. “You can have irregular ripening, so even if you’re using a variety that’s resistant to the viruses, you can still run into trouble if the populations …

UF ‘Dream Team’ Plans to Change Face of South Florida Ag, Natural Resources

Abbey Taylor Industry News Release, Research, Top Posts

Contact: Beverly James, 352-273-3566, beverlymjames@ufl.edu HOMESTEAD, Fla. – They don’t wear capes and tights, but the new University of Florida (UF) faculty members hope their research will help grow the state’s agriculture and natural resources, and stave off enemies that threaten industry. The eight scientists, based at the Tropical Research and Education Center (TREC) in Homestead, Florida, are bringing new …

Mechanical Strawberry Harvester Could Solve Labor Shortage

Abbey Taylor Berries, Business, Research, Strawberry, Top Posts, VSCNews magazine

Labor continues to be a pressing issue for southeastern agriculture. However, in Florida, new technology on the horizon may offer a glimmer of hope. Gary Wishnatzki, owner of Wish Farms and co-founder of Harvest CROO Robotics, is working to create a mechanical harvester that could revolutionize the strawberry industry. LOOKING AHEAD TO LABOR Wishnatzki said he started seeing changes in …

Spider Mite Research Heats Up

Abbey Taylor Berries, Pests, Research, Strawberry, Top Posts

Two-spotted spider mites are a major issue in Florida strawberries. Justin Renkema, former assistant professor at the University of Florida (UF), says mites make their way into Florida fields by blowing in from neighboring fields, but they may also be coming on strawberry transplants from nurseries. After proving that spider mites were coming to Florida on transplants, Renkema wanted to …