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AI helps detect watermelon disease quickly, accurately (7/18/2022) by Brad Buck - If you savor a juicy watermelon in the scorching summer heat, Florida farmers toil to meet your tastes. The Sunshine State leads the nation in watermelon production. But, like all farmers, those who produce watermelons seek ways to control diseases, so they don’t lose all or part of their crops. The needs of growers drive… more
Watermelon Irrigation is Key to the Success of Controlled Release Fertilizer (12/17/2021) by Kelly Aue - LIVE OAK, Fla. --- For farmers in the Suwannee Valley, using Best Management Practices (BMP) are more important than ever to efficiently irrigate their crops. At the UF/IFAS North Florida Research and Education Center - Suwannee Valley (UF/IFAS NFREC-SV), a team led by Bob Hochmuth, UF/IFAS Extension regional specialized agent for vegetable crops and assistant… more
Watermelon Is More Than Dessert (5/1/2020) by mmaddox - A family reunion, summer BBQ, picnic or get together jsut isn’t complete without a delicious slice of sweet juicy watermelon. Watermelons come in all shapes, sizes, red and yellow meat colors and some are seedless. Watermelons are listed as budget friendly because they are 100% edible and one large watermelon can feed up to three… more
Watermelon Is More Than Dessert (5/1/2020) by mmaddox - A family reunion, summer BBQ, picnic or get together jsut isn’t complete without a delicious slice of sweet juicy watermelon. Watermelons come in all shapes, sizes, red and yellow meat colors and some are seedless. Watermelons are listed as budget friendly because they are 100% edible and one large watermelon can feed up to three… more
Watermelon Is More Than Dessert (5/1/2020) by mmaddox - A family reunion, summer BBQ, picnic or get together jsut isn’t complete without a delicious slice of sweet juicy watermelon. Watermelons come in all shapes, sizes, red and yellow meat colors and some are seedless. Watermelons are listed as budget friendly because they are 100% edible and one large watermelon can feed up to three… more
Why the juice is worth the squeeze this watermelon season. (4/20/2020) by Tyler Pittman, PhD, CWB - Why the juice is worth the squeeze this watermelon season. Watermelons are one of the most iconic and important crops in the Suwannee Valley are beginning to fill fields unaware of the uncertain times that the COVID-19 pandemic brings. In contrast, the farmers who grow these watermelons are well aware of the uncertainties the COVID-19… more
Topic Tuesday: How to ‘squash’ the squash bugs in your field (4/7/2020) by Sylvia Willis - Spring has sprung and that means watermelon season in Suwannee County is here! Watermelons are quite a labor-intensive crop and controlling weeds, pests, and diseases throughout the entire season is not an easy task especially due to Florida’s hot, humid climate. One pest that has shown an increased presence in watermelon fields the past few… more
watermelon Q: Do watermelons ripen after they are picked? (6/18/2017) by BLOGS.IFAS - Q: I know it is the end of the watermelon season but we just bought a seedless one. Do watermelons ripen after they are picked? A: Once a watermelon is removed from the vine, it will no longer be able to become sweeter. Other fruit such as some citrus, grapes, cherries, blackberries, and strawberries do… more
Growing Watermelon Vertically (6/2/2017) by Whitney Elmore - Growing watermelon with a lack of space is a viable possibility with a strong, durable trellis. The trick is to secure the watermelon to the trellis with a mesh produce bag, nylon stockings, cotton strips, etc., so that when they grow heavy they won’t fall of the vine due to shear weight. One can either… more
Start Preparing Now for Whiteflies this Fall in Vegetable Crops (4/21/2017) by joshuafr - I realize that most vegetable producers have just settled into their spring crops, everything is well on its way, and you can put it on maintenance mode for a few weeks. But before long, if you haven’t already, it will be time to make plans for fall crops. This is where I challenge you to… more
The Vegetable Production Handbook of Florida: The Go-to-Guide for Vegetable Farmers (8/26/2016) by joshuafr - The recently updated Vegetable Production Handbook of Florida (VPH) is the go-to-source of information on vegetable production. So you need to know how to control leafminers in sweet potato? It is in there! Maybe you have a problem with Cercospora leaf spot in okra? Need some weed management options in tomato? That is in there… more
Beware of the Upcoming Heat – Drought Stress in Vegetables (4/22/2016) by joshuafr - It happens every year, usually the second week of May, but this year it looks like it may be next week. We are strolling right along, crops are moving beautifully, weather is nearly perfect, and then it happens. Summer shows up. And it often seems to do so very rapidly, over just a few days.… more
Watermelon Is in Season! (4/4/2016) by Samantha Murray - [Tweet "As the weather warms, cool down with some in-season watermelon. http://bit.ly/1RAhrCR"]It’s not summertime yet, but that doesn’t mean you can’t start enjoying Florida-grown watermelon now. Watermelon is in season in Florida between April and July.1 Look for it now at your local grocery store or farmers market. Fun Watermelon Facts Florida is the biggest… more
Pollination of Vegetable Crops – Maximize Your Crop’s Potential (2/3/2016) by Judy Biss - It won’t be long until row crops and vegetable gardens are planted and thriving once again next spring. A sometimes taken for granted, yet critical element of any prosperous crop is successful pollination. Most of us know what “text book” pollination means, but did you know in cucurbit plants, (squash, melon, pumpkin) at least 1,000… more
Totally Impermeable Film – A New Plastic Mulch Option for 2016 Fumigation (11/13/2015) by joshuafr - Plastic mulch technology has come a long way in the last 15 years and has made another exponential jump in the last 5 years. Traditionally plastic films used in plasticulture production systems were simple, single layer low density polyethylene films. These are reasonably priced and for the production systems they were and are still used… more
Watermelon – A Taste of Summer (6/30/2015) by BLOGS.IFAS - Rarely do I hear the phrase “school’s out” and not think of my own summers of fun and, of course, Alice Cooper’s 1972 major hit single “School’s Out for Summer” – does that age me? In fact, “word” has it that Alice Cooper said he was inspired to write the song when answering the question,… more
Gummy Stem Blight Spreading in Panhandle Watermelons (4/24/2015) by paret - Gummy stem blight is a highly destructive, foliar fungal disease of watermelon that can cause yield losses of more than 50%. This disease is currently confirmed in multiple locations in Northwest and Northeast of Florida. Recent weather conditions of high humidity and high temperature have been ideal for gummy stem blight throughout the northern part… more
Watermelon Novel Bacterial Leaf Spot Research Update (6/27/2014) by paret - Pseudomonas Syringae Leaf Spot on Watermelon Mathews Paret, Eric Newberry, Nick Dufault, Josh Freeman, Bob Hochmuth, Anthony Drew, David Langston and Jeff Jones Florida and Georgia are the two largest producers of watermelon in the United States with 48,000 acres under production and a farm value of $267 million. These two states also produce squash… more
Keep Water and Nutrients in the Root Zone (4/25/2014) by joshuafr - Summer is rapidly approaching and irrigation demands by vegetable crops will be greatly increasing. Many areas of the Panhandle are blessed with well-drained soils, which are great during wet periods, but can be challenging to manage the water and nutrients provided to crops. Lighter or sandier soils have lower water holding capacity than soils with… more
Tri-State Cucurbit Meeting – February 24 (2/19/2014) by Matthew Orwat - Tri-State Cucurbit Meeting – February 24   The 2014 Tri-State Cucurbit Meeting will be held on Monday, February 24, at the Jackson County Agricultural Conference Center, 2741 Pennsylvania Avenue, Marianna from 9:00 AM to 4:00 PM Central Time. The meeting will feature morning refreshments and lunch. Cucurbit crops are members of the gourd family that… more
U-scout: An Excellent Resource for Vegetable Disease Diagnosis (8/2/2013) by Matthew Orwat - The ample rain and persistent humidity throughout northwest Florida during the last two months have increased disease incidences in summer vegetable crops. Scouting fields with an eagle eye for potential disease outbreaks is essential this season. The U-scout tool, developed by UF/IFAS Plant Pathologist Dr. Mathews Paret and other extension faculty, is a valuable resource… more
Watermelon Harvest is Late, but Festival is Not ! (6/27/2013) by Matthew Orwat - Watermelon harvest is two to three weeks late in Washington County, but it's finally around the corner.   Watermelon growers in Washington, Holmes and Jackson Counties have been surveyed, with all indicating a late start to harvest. The majority have not begun harvest, as of the 26th of June. However, there will be plenty of… more
Watermelon Harvest Around the Corner in the Central Florida Panhandle (6/18/2013) by Matthew Orwat - Watermelon harvest is around the corner in the central Florida panhandle, but is actually a week or two late. This slight delay in harvest is due to the near 100 degree temperatures and lack of pollinators present. Flowers have been closing early in the day due to heat, and this further reduces pollination. If daily… more
Tri-State Cucurbit Meeting (2/7/2013) by Matthew Orwat - UF / IFAS of Jackson County will host this year’s annual Watermelon-Cucurbit Meeting on Monday, February 11. Registration will begin at 8:30 AM CST, with the program beginning at 9:00 AM. Topics to be covered include: Disease Control in Cucurbits Fertility Considerations for Cucurbit Crops Pesticide Handling Decisions Applying the Correct Amount Agricultural Practices (GAP)… more
Upcoming Regional Watermelon, Beef, Horse, & Row Crop Educational Events (2/2/2013) by Doug Mayo - Jackson County Extension is hosting four regional, agricultural educational events over the next several weeks. Watermelon & Cucurbit - February 11 The Tri-state Watermelon & Cucurbit Meeting will be held on Monday, February 11th at the Jackson County Agriculture Conference Center, located at 2741 Pennsylvania Avenue in Marianna, Florida. The program is scheduled to begin… more
Additional Rains Improve Washington County Situation (6/15/2012) by Les Harrison - Rains over the past week have greatly improved crop and pasture conditions in Washington County. The watermelon, sweet corn, and vegetable harvests are proceeding at a rapid pace. Peanuts and cotton are responding well to recent rains. Cattle conditions are improving along with refreshed pastures. The wet conditions halted hay harvest until the weather clears.… more
Washington County Conditions Improve, Melon Harvest Underway (6/8/2012) by Les Harrison - Rains this week have provided enough moisture for Washington County farmers to resume planting. A byproduct of the recent dry weather is weed control has been difficult for crops in some fields. Herbicides are not as effective, if at all, when the targeted plant is not actively growing. Pasture conditions had become critical until Tuesday's… more
Watermelon/Curcurbit Meeting February 7 Chipley (1/25/2012) by Doug Mayo - Tri-state Cucurbit Meeting February 7, 2012 Washington County Ag Center 1424 Jackson Ave Chilpey, FL 32428 8:30 AM Registration - 9:00 AM program begins - 4:15 PM adjourn 1 CORE and 2 Private Applicator CEU's Presentation Topics: Disease Control Fertilization Pesticide handling Applying pesticides correctly Good Agricultural Practices (GAP) Insect managment Varieity Update For more… more

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