Nurseries: What to do after a Hurricane/ Tropical Storm

Now that you and employees are safe and ready to get back to the nursery. There are 10 tips to consider.

  1. Inspect the nursery and assess the damage, take multiple pictures or use a video camera to document damage before you start to clean up. (Hint: It helps if you documented the state of your nursery before the hurricane/storm damages)
  2. Pay attention to downed power lines, broken water lines, etc. Remember safety first!
  3. Secure your structure and buildings. Make any necessary repairs to secure them from the weather and intrusion.
  4. If necessary, notify disaster assistance agencies of your needs. If you have crop insurance, you may qualify for disaster assistance or low cost loans. Contact the appropriate agency as soon as possible for instructions.
  5. Stand up and re-stake all plant material as quickly as possible to prevent burning from lying in the sun or plant stress and consequent disease in flooded areas.
  6. Irrigate to flush away any salt residue. The closer to the coast you are, the more important this is. The force of hurricane winds can carry salt spray for miles.
  7. Replant any plant material needing it.
  8. Prune to correct any damage.
  9. Remember that some crops such as palms may show injuries weeks or months after the actual injury.
  10. Notify your customers of your situation as quickly as possible. Let them know how well you survived the storm and when you anticipate servicing their accounts.

If you have any image of damage to your ornamental nursery structures or crops, share it with your UF/IFAS Extension agent to evcampoverde@ufl.edu

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