Open House at the UF/IFAS Indian River Research and Education Center

FORT PIERCE, Fla.—The UF/IFAS Indian River Research and Education Center faculty and staff invite the public to its Open House, October 21, 9 a.m. until 3 p.m., in Fort Pierce, Florida.

The open house event will take place at the UF/IFAS Indian River Research and Education Center (IRREC), 2199 South Rock Road, and will be held concurrently with the nearby UF/IFAS St. Lucie County Extension’s Ag-Xtension Fall & Insect Fest, located at 8400 Picos Road. The extension event will run from 9 a.m. until 3 p.m. A guided trolley is available for attendees to enjoy both events. Appropriate for all ages, both functions are free of charge.

“Don’t miss this chance to explore our research and educational initiatives while enjoying a day of informative talks, firsthand demonstrations, and interactive games,” said Sandra Guzmán, an assistant professor of agricultural and biological engineering. “We’re excited to share our work and passion with you, and we hope to see you there!”

Guzmán said the event is an opportunity to showcase the progress and accomplishments of our research and educational teams to the public, while also fostering conversations about our joint efforts to address current and forthcoming challenges. Research programs support local and regional agriculture and natural resources.

Indoor facility and laboratory tours will be led by the IRREC director, Ronald D. Cave, who will present each research topic and introduce participants to the researchers in their laboratories.

Presentations will include laboratory and greenhouse visits and interactions with research teams who work with water resources, crop production and new disease-tolerant citrus varieties, biological control for crop pests and invasive species. Participants will visit the IRREC Aquaculture Facility to learn from Cortney Ohs and his team of researchers the steps involved in aquaculture production of marine food and ornamental fishes. Trolley tours to IRREC research fields will allow attendees to view active research experiments.

Other focus areas that attendees may visit include:

• Smart irrigation and hydrology
• Citrus horticulture
• Plant pathology and transcriptomics
• Soil and water conservation
• Plant root biology
• Entomopathogenic fungi that protects crops
• Postharvest technology

Local students who may be considering UF for their educational journey will have an opportunity to meet in-person with an UF admissions advisor.

The University of Florida is a land-grant institution. As part of that designation, the university fulfills its commitment to provide services in research, extension, and education statewide. At IRREC, faculty members conduct research and then translate their findings to improve local agricultural production for growers and natural resources for the community. The findings and advancements are presented to stakeholders by extension faculty in collaboration with research faculty. The IRREC faculty members teach graduate student courses online and provide in-person training and mentoring of interns, graduate students, and visiting scientists.

Although admission is free and registration is not required, organizers request attendees please sign up at this link. For more information about the UF/IFAS IRREC, visit the IRREC website at:


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Posted: September 19, 2023


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