Experts to Speak on Future of Florida Landscapes at Annual Summit

GAINESVILLE, Fla. — What will Florida landscapes look like in the future?

That’s the theme of this year’s UF/IFAS Urban Landscape Conference, to be held March 20-21 in Gainesville, Florida. The UF/IFAS Center for Landscape Conservation and Ecology (CLCE) will host the conference at the UF/IFAS Extension Straughn Professional Development Center, 2142 Shealy Drive, Gainesville.

Topics at the summit include water quality and quantity, irrigation, consumer preferences and behavior, Florida-Friendly Landscaping™, turfgrasses, trees, roadside vegetation and much more.

With 20 million current residents and 1,000 new people moving to Florida each day, everyone will need to conserve water to protect Florida’s existing supply, said Michael Dukes, a UF/IFAS professor of agricultural and biological engineering and director of the UF/IFAS Center for Land Use Efficiency.

Dukes said he and his colleagues hope to convey to attendees that there are external forces that will likely reshape our current landscapes and landscape industry in the coming years.

“Florida is grappling with issues such as red tide, toxic algae and limited water supplies in some areas,” Dukes said. “These issues are at least in part related to human activity, including what we do with our landscapes. We’ve seen radical changes of landscapes in some parts of the country as a result of similar issues. Working on these issues proactively will result in a continued vibrant industry as well as providing landscapes in demand by consumers.”

The summit provides a forum for UF/IFAS faculty who work on landscape to share their information, Dukes said.

Thomas Obreza, senior associate dean for UF/IFAS Extension, will welcome everyone to the summit on the first day.

“The Urban Landscape Summit is an excellent forum where UF/IFAS faculty share their expertise on managing pests, irrigation, nutrients and everything in between” said Obreza. “UF/IFAS Extension is all about teaching, and faculty who attend the summit will learn a great deal of new research, information and techniques to help our many stakeholders.”

For more information and to register for the summit, click here.

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By: Brad Buck, 352-294-3303, bradbuck@ufl.edu

The mission of the University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences is to develop knowledge relevant to agricultural, human and natural resources and to make that knowledge available to sustain and enhance the quality of human life. With more than a dozen research facilities, 67 county Extension offices, and award-winning students and faculty in the UF College of Agricultural and Life Sciences, UF/IFAS works to bring science-based solutions to the state’s agricultural and natural resources industries, and all Florida residents. Visit the UF/IFAS web site at ifas.ufl.edu and follow us on social media at @UF_IFAS.

 

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