Officials Survey Hurricane Damage in Florida

Abbey Taylor Top Posts, Weather

On September 18, U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue, Florida Agriculture Commissioner Adam Putnam, Congressman Tom Rooney and Senator Marco Rubio flew in a helicopter to get an aerial view of farm damage from Hurricane Irma. Described by Rubio as an “agriculture catastrophe,” the storm ravished many Florida crops. Since many Florida vegetables were not in the ground yet, they …

First Organic Food and Farming Summit Sees Success

Abbey Taylor Organic, Top Posts

The inaugural Organic Food and Farming Summit wrapped up on September 19. Presented by Florida Organic Growers (FOG), the summit featured presentations from top researchers, a trade show and farm tours. Andi Emrich, summit coordinator, says the event went extremely well. Emrich says one year ago, the FOG board decided it wanted a conference that was specifically organic. The summit …

UGA Prepares for Growing Grape Industry

Jaci Schreckengost Grapes, Top Posts

The University of Georgia (UGA) recently put a new viticulture team in place and hired new professionals in response to the continuously growing interest in the Georgia grape industry. Cain Hickey, UGA viticulture Extension specialist, discusses the growing grape and wine industry in Georgia. Two of the main goals of the UGA research are to improve crop yield and quality, …

New Pest-Exclusion System

Abbey Taylor Pests, Research, Top Posts

The Organic Food and Farming Summit began on September 17. Presented by Florida Organic Growers, the summit features farm tours, workshops and presentations on the latest research for organic production. Ayanava Majumdar, Extension entomologist for the Alabama Cooperative Extension System, revealed a new pest-exclusion method for high-tunnel production at the summit on September 18. The new system is called high-tunnel …

Georgia Blueberry Growers Face Disease Issue

Abbey Taylor Berries, Top Posts

The Georgia blueberry industry is currently learning to manage a disease that has become a larger problem to growers over the past few years. Harald Scherm, head of the Department of Plant Pathology at the University of Georgia, says Exobasidium leaf and fruit spot, caused by the yeast-like fungal plant pathogen Exobasidium maculosum, has recently grown as an issue. The …

Hurricanes May Bring Unusual Pests

Abbey Taylor Pests, Top Posts, Weather

Hurricane Irma rolled through the Southeast and impacted many sectors of the region’s agriculture. While growers continue to assess the damage on their farms, Ayanava Majumdar, Extension entomologist for the Alabama Cooperative Extension System, reminds them to check their crop for unusual pests as well. According to Majumdar, insects generally do not like wet weather. Rain can bring insect pathogens …

South Florida Fruit and Vegetable Grower Damage Report

Abbey Taylor Labor, Top Posts, Weather

Hurricane Irma tore through Florida on September 10–11. Now, growers are assessing the damage on their farms and looking toward the future. Lisa Lochridge, director of public affairs for the Florida Fruit & Vegetable Association (FFVA), says based on reports from growers, fruit and vegetable farms faced minimal damage. Before the hurricane came through, Calvin Arnold, center director for the …

Hedged Pecan Trees Bring Unexpected Benefits

Abbey Taylor Pecan, Top Posts

Some larger-scale pecan growers in Georgia have been practicing hedging. Hedging is a practice in which the grower makes severe cuts to the tree to make it a little bit smaller than what it would normally be, which allows more sunlight to enter the orchard. Lenny Wells, an associate professor of horticulture and pecan specialist at the University of Georgia, …