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Gulf Coast REC

UF/IFAS Gulf Coast Research and Education Center is located at
14625 CR 672, Wimauma, FL33598

Editorial Team


Arthropod Pest Management Practices of Strawberry Growers in Florida: A Survey of the 2019–2020 Field Season

IN1391/ENY2097by Sriyanka LahiriFebruary 9th, 2023This publication is aimed at growers, Extension agents, industry partners, and the general public who have an interest in integrated pest management (IPM) tools used by growers in general and strawberry growers in particular. The purpose is to establish a baseline of adopted IPM practices by the strawberry industry in Florida so that changes in behavior can be tracked in future. To document the current pest management practices, an in-person survey of 24 strawberry growers in Hillsborough Co., FL was conducted (IRB# 201902072) during the field season of 2019-2020. The survey showed that 70% of strawberry growers spray their crop more than 5 times in a season with an insecticide/miticide. But strawberry growers have developed an awareness of IPM tools available to them and are already using these tools such as releasing biological control agents for mite management, cover cropping, and considering planting banker (flowering) crops in designated spaces in and around their fields.Critical Issue: Agricultural and Food Systems

Common Arthropod Pests in Blackberries and Pomegranates in Florida

IN1376/ENY-2084by Chastity Perry, Hugh Smith, Zhanao Deng, and Sriyanka LahiriDecember 12th, 2022Blackberry and pomegranate are growing in importance as alternative crops in Florida. In the past decade, blackberry production in Florida increased from 64 acres in 2007 to 173 acres in 2017.  The many health benefits acquired from these fruits make them good alternative options for growers in Florida to diversify their operations by planting some new and less traditional crops, providing them a niche in the Florida agriculture market. The intended audience of this publication includes blackberry and pomegranate growers in Florida as well as Extension agents providing expert recommendations to both these industries. The purpose of this publication is to share information derived from a one-year field survey on commonly encountered pests.Critical Issue: Agricultural and Food Systems

Protected Agriculture in Mexico

FE1124/FE1124by Feng Wu, Zhengfei Guan, and Kuan-Ming HuangDecember 7th, 2022Mexico is a market power in the US produce market. Protected agriculture accelerated the rapid growth and transformation of the Mexican produce industry. This publication provides a comprehensive overview and in-depth analysis of protected agriculture in Mexico to help understand this fast-growing sector and the driving forces behind its expansion.Critical Issue: Agricultural and Food Systems

The Decline of the US Cucumber and Squash Industry

FE1125/FE1125by Feng Wu, Zhengfei Guan, and Kuan-Ming HuangDecember 7th, 2022The US production of cucumbers and squash has been declining over the last two decades while imports have grown significantly. In particular, imports from Mexico have surpassed US domestic production and have become a major source of cucumber and squash supply in the US market. This publication provides a comprehensive overview of cucumber and squash production and trade to help policymakers, business communities, and researchers understand the structural changes in the market.Critical Issue: Agricultural and Food Systems

Plant-Parasitic Nematodes Associated with Asian Vegetables in Florida

IN1378/ENY-2086by Hung X. Bui and Johan A. DesaegerDecember 1st, 2022Root-knot nematodes (Meloidogyne spp.) are one of the main soilborne pathogens in Florida and cause considerable damage to many vegetables. Asian vegetables are important specialty crops in Florida, but no information is available on their hosts status to plant-parasitic nematodes, in particular to Meloidogyne spp. Therefore, we conducted a survey to learn what Asian vegetables are grown in Florida, the plant-parasitic nematodes associated with these crops, and the damage these nematodes could potentially cause to Asian vegetables.Critical Issue: Agricultural and Food Systems