2018 UF Annual Stone Fruit Workshop and Field Day

Please join us for our 2018 Annual Stone Fruit Workshop and Field Day!

It will be held on May 29th from 9:30am-3:30pm, at the UF/IFAS Plant Science Research and Education Unit, in Citra, FL. The event is free, and will include presentations from  faculty and staff from Florida and Georgia, and also a tour of our field. Lunch will be provided, and is sponsored by MaxiJet.

Please see the following link to register for the event and for more information of the day’s schedule:


We hope to see you later this month!



Peach Marketing Order Hearing

Fall Peach Roundtable

I hope that everyone has registered for the fall Peach Roundtable, to be held at the Gulf Coast Research and Education Center.  It will be held on September 17th, 2015, from 8:45 am – 3:00 pm, and lunch will be provided. We will have a trade show with multiple vendors, which is a great opportunity to stay in touch and see new products and haggle prices! Gary England and the central Florida Peach Extension Team has put an extended day of talks and opportunities for feedback from our growers.

To register: http://bit.ly/FallPeach2015.

Peach Marketing Order Hearing

FlordaPrinceAnother marketing order hearing will be held at the Fall Peach Roundtable on September 17, 2015 at 3:00 pm at the Gulf Coast Research and Education Center. If you can’t attend the workshop, but would like to provide input, please attend to make yourself heard. Chris Denmark will attend from FDACS in Tallahassee to answer any and all questions.

This will be one of two more opportunities to provide feedback on the final document that will go out to vote, most likely in January, 2016 to be implemented in April – May, 2016.

Florida Peach Growers Association

One of the things that many growers have said to me over the 5 years that I’ve been at UF in this position is, “I wish we had a statewide organization”.  Or something like that…(I’m paraphrasing).  With the industry as large as it was in the 1980s, I was actually surprised that there wasn’t an organization.

However, “necessity is the mother of invention”- and the Central Florida Peach Growers Meeting was initiated by a great group of extension agents – Chris Oswalt, Alicia Whidden, Gary England, and Cami Esmel McAvoy.  This has led to a regular meeting/roundtable that has given growers a great opportunity to “ask the scientist” and to learn from each other.

But what about those in S. Florida and N. Florida?  Thus, there is a need to form a statewide organization. I’ve introduced this topic at the Winter Workshop in Fort Pierce last month and I presented a short introduction to possible organization scenarios.  The good news is that there was a Florida Peach Growers Association before, so the name is “on the books” in Tallahassee.

Now comes the tough part.  We need people to volunteer to help us out.  Growers, commercial folks, nursery personnel, marketers – everyone is welcome to the table.  We need representation at the table  when something comes up, like providing input on a Caribbean Fruit Fly Protocol so that our peach fruit can be accepted into other states, as well as other industry challenges that may need a nimble response, or research/extension priorities.

Many of those involved in the peach industry do not solely grow peaches and have experience with, or are members of other organizations.  I’d like to be able to take the things that work well in those organizations for you and duplicate that for this statewide organization!  We also need to think about large, medium, and small growers so that this group can put out information that is appropriate for all operation sizes.

The next steps are to:

  1. Volunteer
  2. Set up a meeting – I was hoping to shoot for the last week in January or first week in February (please attend and let’s see what we can get done!)
  3. Decide on group objectives
  4. Define industry challenges and discussion solutions
  5. Action!

Please let me know what you think.  I hope to have more information next week on a possible location and topic discussions.  Stay tuned!

2014 Stone Fruit Field Day Posted!

Exciting news – the sponsors are set, the agenda and speakers have been finalized!  This year’s annual UF Stone Fruit Field Day will be held at the Frank Stronach Conference Center, at the Plant Science Research and Education Unit in Citra, FL on April 22nd, 2014 from 10:00 a.m. – 3:30 pm.

We have a great agenda planned with presentations on postharvest management of peaches, the impact of our current climate on the southeastern U.S., new AgroClimate apps, chill accumulation and options for management in peaches, crop insurance progress and options, and the quest to find out why our rootstock, ‘Flordaguard’ is resistant to nematodes.

Lunch will be free again this year, thanks to our very generous sponsors, which include: Philip Rucks Citrus Nursery, ColdPICK Technologies, Maxijet, Inc., Island Grove Ag Products, Growers Fertilizer Corporation, KeyPlex, Valent Biosciences, Syngenta, and Carden and Associates, Inc.

Please register by April 15th, so that we have an accurate headcount for lunch.  There is a place on the registration form to input any dietary restrictions so that we can get the appropriate lunch for you and you won’t go hungry!


The link for registration is: http://www.eventbrite.com/e/2014-uf-stone-fruit-annual-field-day-tickets-10742449957.

As always, if you have any questions, please let me know!

Central Florida Peach Roundtable

Hi All – Just some details about the next C. Florida Peach Roundtable:

Please mark your calendar for Tuesday January 14, 2014 from 10am to 12pm at Pasco County Extension office (Clayton Hall) for the next Central Florida Peach Roundtable.

Our tentative speaker for this Peach Roundtable is Dr. Jose Chaparro. The topic and other information will be published on January 1, 2014 in the newsletter. So please be on the lookout for your copy of the Winter Edition of the Central Florida Peach Newsletter at that time.

Happy New Year to you all!