Sun Protection: Keep Watermelon Crop Safe During Hot, Dry Conditions

Clint Thompson Georgia, Top Posts, Watermelon

By Clint Thompson South Georgia is on the brink of starting its watermelon harvest season. If farmers hope to capitalize with multiple harvests, they may need to apply chemical applications to protect against sunburn, which has been one of the few concerns during the production season. “The last couple of folks I spoke with, watermelons were volleyball size, if not …

Collision Course: North Florida, South Georgia Watermelons Likely Hitting Market at Same Time

Clint Thompson Florida, Georgia, Top Posts, Watermelon

By Clint Thompson North Florida watermelons and South Georgia watermelons are likely on a collision course for the Southeast market this summer. Weather is the main reason why. Florida Frost Producers in the Suwanee Valley Region in North Florida have started harvesting this year’s crop. But many of their fields were impacted by a scattered frost late in the season. …

Weekly Update: UF/IFAS Communication Key in Florida’s Watermelon Production

Clint Thompson Florida, Top Posts, Watermelon

University of Florida/IFAS Extension agents provide producers key information in a timely fashion through the Weekly Watermelon Update. When an issue emerges – like gummy stem blight for example on May 10 – Bob Hochmuth, a regional specialized vegetable Extension agent and 11 other Extension agents in the Suwanee Valley region, activate an alert system that informs growers and managers …

Disease Alert: Downy Mildew Observed in North Florida Watermelons

Clint Thompson Disease, Florida, Top Posts, Watermelon

University of Florida/IFAS Extension agents in the Suwanee Valley area are confident downy mildew disease is in the region’s watermelon crop. Producers need to spray for this disease, also known as “wildfire.” Spray programs especially need to be initiated in the southern parts of the Suwannee Valley region, including in Levy and Gilchrist counties, where the first reports of the …

Fertilization Keeps Watermelons ‘Happy’

Clint Thompson Florida, Georgia, Top Posts, Watermelon

By Clint Thompson Fertilization remains a vital part of the watermelon production season up until harvest time, says Bob Hochmuth, UF/IFAS Regional Specialized Extension agent in Live Oak, Florida. “One harvest, every five to seven days let’s say, it’s the second and the third and the potentially fourth harvest that we need to make sure we’re taking care and keeping …

Disease Discovery: Gummy Stem Blight a Problem in North Florida Watermelons

Clint Thompson Disease, Florida, Top Posts, Watermelon

By Clint Thompson Fusarium wilt is not the only disease affecting North Florida watermelons. According to an email alert sent by Suwannee Valley Extension agents, the region’s watermelon crop is undergoing high gummy stem blight pressure. High temperatures and humidity along with rain showers have provided the perfect environment for gummy stem blight. “In fact, I would be willing to …

Fusarium Wilt a Problem in Watermelons in South Carolina

Clint Thompson Disease, South Carolina, Top Posts, Watermelon

According to The South Carolina Grower, fusarium wilt disease is becoming more widespread in watermelon fields in South Carolina. Clemson Plant Pathologist Tony Keinath said fusarium wilt symptoms include wilting of leaves at the crown of the plant, wilting of one vine on a plant or wilting without yellowing of a small plant. The Fusarium fungus is most active when …

Waiting for Watermelons: North Florida, South Georgia Crop Delayed by Weather

Clint Thompson Florida, Georgia, Top Posts, Watermelon

By Clint Thompson A delay in harvest for North Florida watermelons would normally spell doom for producers in that region hoping to avoid a collision course with South Georgia producers. But that’s not the case this year. Branford, Florida producer Laura Land said most producers are expecting to harvest at least week than they normally would, due to cooler temperatures. …