The Impact of Nematodes on Hemp

Alison DeLoach Florida, Hemp, Research, Top Posts

By Alison DeLoach Interest is currently high in growing hemp as an alternative crop; however, nematodes may be an issue for growers. Johan Desaeger, assistant professor at the University of Florida (UF), is planning to conduct research on how susceptible hemp will be to nematodes in Florida. Hemp is being studied under a new pilot project at UF, like the …

Biological Controls for Growers

Alison DeLoach Research, Top Posts, Vegetables

By Alison DeLoach Integrated pest management is an economic way for growers to control pests. Jim Walgenbach an Extension entomologist at North Carolina State University, studies integrated pest management on tree fruits and vegetable crops. At the 2019 Southeast Regional Fruit and Vegetable Conference, he discussed research on biological controls for certain pests. When it comes to managing spider mites …

Drone Technology on the Rise

Abbey Taylor Research, Technology, Top Posts

Many growers are adopting new technologies, including drones, to aid their production systems. According to Jim Fletcher, a University of Florida (UF) regional water specialist and interim BMP coordinator, drones could bring growers to the next level. Currently, Fletcher says drones can fly over fields and identify areas where there may be an issue with the plants. Then the grower …

Smart Sprayer Technology for Better Weed Control

Abbey Taylor Produce, Research, Top Posts, VSCNews magazine

By Arnold Schumann, Nathan Boyd, Shaun Sharpe and Jialin Yu Most vegetable and strawberry crops in Florida are grown on raised, fumigated soil beds covered with plastic mulch and fertigated with drip tape. Fortunately, the plastic mulch suppresses most weeds that would otherwise grow rapidly and outcompete the crops in Florida’s warm subtropical climate. The open holes that are punched …


UF Researchers Develop Model to Help Keep Crop Seeds Healthy

Dan Cooper Florida, Industry News Release, Research, Seeds

Working with international researchers, University of Florida scientists have developed a model that will help protect good seeds, which are necessary to plant healthy crops and determine what areas are at higher risk for unhealthy seeds. In many parts of the world, people lack adequate access to nutritious food because there aren’t enough quality seeds for food production, said Karen …


Large Scale Citrus Field Trials Idea Surfaces

Dan Cooper Florida, Fruit, Research

Citrus research continues to be a topic in state and federal funding circles as the industry’s battle with HLB, or citrus greening, continues. One idea in the incubator of industry discussion is a program being call “CRAFT” – an acronym for a “Citrus Research and Field Trial” program. It’s a large scale field trials idea, and Citrus Research and Development …


It Could Be Lights Out for Some Diseases and Pests in Strawberries

Dan Cooper Fruit, Industry News Release, Research, Strawberry

Natalia Peres envisions a day when light from a machine that resembles a spacecraft helps prevent powdery mildew from causing much damage to strawberries. Peres, a professor of plant pathology at the University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences, works with a global group of scientists studying how to use ultraviolet light to suppress plant pathogens. Powdery mildew …

Growing Multiple Crops on the Same Plastic Mulch

Abbey Taylor innovation, Produce, Research, Strawberry, Top Posts, VSCNews magazine

By Nathan Boyd Vegetable growers throughout the Southeast face intensive economic pressure from foreign competition, volatile markets and increased production costs. Alternative production systems are needed that reduce input costs and increase economic return. One potential approach is to grow more than one crop on the same plastic mulch. The vast majority of horticultural crops in the Southeast are grown …