Watermelon Grafting to Manage Fusarium Wilt

Jaci Schreckengost Top Posts, Watermelon

Researchers are studying the effects of grafting in watermelon crops to manage a pathogen continuing to cause problems for many Florida growers. Two University of Florida researchers, Nicholas Dufault and Xin Zhao, are currently on the team to examine grafting possibilities for the watermelon industry. Dufault, an assistant professor and plant pathologist for vegetable and…

Cucurbit Crop Concerns for Georgia Growers

Jaci Schreckengost Top Posts, Watermelon

Growers in Georgia are currently facing challenges when it comes to battling fusarium wilt and whitefly-transmitted viral diseases in their vegetable crops, such as watermelon and zucchini. Bhabesh Dutta, an Extension vegetable disease specialist at the University of Georgia, said heavy whitefly pressure is prominent right now as we move from summer into fall. Whiteflies…

TREC Helps Growers, Trains Future Plant Breeders

Jaci Schreckengost Top Posts, Watermelon

Researchers at the University of Florida/Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences' Tropical Research and Education Center (TREC) are looking for ways to improve production of crops such as squash and watermelon. Geoffrey Meru, assistant professor in the Horticultural Sciences Department at TREC, is one of the researchers examining key challenges limiting growers’ success and addressing…

Do You Love Watermelons in the Hot Summer? UF Scientists Are on the Case

Abigail Taylor Top Posts, Watermelon

By: Brad Buck, 352-294-3303, bradbuck@ufl.edu GAINESVILLE, Fla. --- Some people love to eat a juicy, seedless watermelon for a tasty, refreshing snack during a hot, Florida summer day. University of Florida scientists have found a way to stave off potential diseases while retaining that flavor. Consumers increasingly savor the convenience and taste of seedless watermelons,…

Research Begins on Fusarium Wilt Affecting Watermelon

Jaci Schreckengost Top Posts, Watermelon

When it comes to watermelon, one of the ongoing and increasing challenges is fusarium wilt. This disease is caused by a soil-borne fungus called Fusarium oxysporum. The type of fusarium that causes fusarium wilt is specialized to watermelon, says Bhabesh Dutta, a vegetable Extension pathologist at the University of Georgia. Dutta is leading a collaborative…

Southwest Florida Struggles with Whiteflies and Drought

Abigail Taylor Pests, Tomatoes, Top Posts, Watermelon

The drought is not the only problem Florida tomato and watermelon growers are facing this season. Gene McAvoy, regional vegetable Extension agent with the University of Florida, said whitefly pressure has proliferated and become a big problem for growers. Florida’s relatively warm winter this past year has caused tremendous pest pressure (especially whiteflies) now in…

Labor Issues and Watermelon

Abigail Taylor Legislative, Top Posts, Watermelon

Labor seems to be the biggest issue looming over the watermelon industry. Bob Morrissey, executive director of the National Watermelon Association, hopes that President Trump will continue to uphold his campaign promises on immigration. President Trump has been clear about his stance on immigration throughout his campaign and during his first several months in office.…

Fusarium Wilt in Watermelon

Abigail Taylor Top Posts, Watermelon

Dan Egel, an Extension vegetable pathologist at Purdue University, recently spoke at the Southeast Regional Fruit and Vegetable Conference about issues with Fusarium wilt in watermelon transplants. He also discussed his yearly greenhouse trial on watermelon and Fusarium wilt. Since watermelon need long, hot growing seasons, growers may choose to start the watermelon's growth indoors…