Managing Whitefly-Transmitted Viruses in Georgia

Ashley Robinson Cucurbits, Tomatoes, Top Posts, VSCNews magazine

By Bhabesh Dutta and Rajagopalbabu Srinivasan The silverleaf whitefly (Bemisia tabaci), also known as sweetpotato whitefly, is a pest of several horticultural and agronomic crops in southern Georgia. While direct feeding can injure plants and lead to problems such as silvering of leaves, deposition of honeydew and formation of sooty mold, whiteflies also can transmit numerous devastating plant viruses. Transmission …

Tomato, Food Safety Workshop to be held on Sept. 8 in LaBelle, Florida

Clint Thompson Florida, Tomatoes, Top Posts

There will be a tomato and Food Safety Workshop on Wednesday, Sept. 8. The workshop and T-GAP Renewal will be held at the LaBelle Civic Center in LaBelle, Florida. The Florida Tomato Institute will present industry and research updates during the morning session from 9 a.m. to noon. The afternoon will consist of new product presentations by select sponsors and …

Climate Change: UF Using Grant to Study Impact on Seed Development

Clint Thompson Florida, Tomatoes, Top Posts, Weather

Challenges are not uncommon for vegetable and specialty crop producers. Rising imports and high input costs are just a couple. But what about climate change? “The environment has a huge impact on plant health and reproduction,” said Alfred Huo, UF/IFAS assistant professor of plant breeding. “Plants respond to environmental cues, like temperature, to flower and reproduce in an adaptive manner. …

Tomato Expert: (Pallets) Are One of Those Things You Never Thought About

Clint Thompson Florida, Tomatoes, Top Posts

By Clint Thompson Florida’s tomato season is nearing an end this year. While the crop struggled amid the coronavirus pandemic, growers were able to finish production amid a supply shortage, specifically with pallets. But the fall crop is just around the corner. That is a concern for Bob Spencer, President of West Coast Tomato in Palmetto, Florida. “We never experienced …

Lingering Effect: COVID-19 Still Impacting Tomato Industry

Clint Thompson Florida, Tomatoes, Top Posts

By Clint Thompson The coronavirus pandemic continues to have a lingering effect on Florida’s tomato industry. Bob Spencer, President of West Coast Tomato in Palmetto, Florida, said it’s been a rough year for Florida producers. COVID-19 is a main reason why as are imports from Mexico. “The majority of our produce is used in food service. A lot of it …

Devastating Disease: Bacterial Spot a Problem for Some Florida Producers

Clint Thompson Disease, Florida, Tomatoes, Top Posts

According to the South Florida Pest and Disease Hotline, bacterial spot disease is active in tomato and pepper fields on the east coast and around southwest Florida. It is present at moderate levels in older hot pepper plants. Bacterial spot disease flares up after rain events and with fog in tomatoes and non-resistant peppers across the southwest region of Florida. …

Light at the end of the Tunnel: Florida Tomato Producers Longing for Good News

Clint Thompson Florida, Tomatoes, Top Posts

Bob Spencer, with West Coast Tomato in Palmetto, Florida, believes there is light at the end of a year-long tunnel for the state’s tomato producers. As more states continue to reopen combined with the recent passage of the America Rescue Plan, there appears to be good news on the horizon for Florida tomato producers who have struggled from the onset …

What to Grow? Tomato Variety Selection Important Decision for Producers

Clint Thompson Alabama, Tomatoes, Top Posts

The most important decision farmers can make when growing tomatoes in Alabama is variety selection. Joe Kemble, Alabama Extension vegetable specialist, insists that growers understand what varieties grow well in Alabama before they plant this spring. “Easily the most important decision you can make is picking which varieties to grow. You can buy local transplants. It’s always great when you …