Brazilian Peppertree Biological Control Field Demonstrations
The UF/IFAS Indian River Research and Education Center, the UF/IFAS Extension St Lucie County and partner agencies are hosting a series of field demonstration days throughout central and south Florida focusing on Brazilian peppertree biological control. Topics addressed include Brazilian peppertree natural history, biology, invasive characteristics, herbicide management; UF invasive species management resources; Brazilian peppertree biological control up close and personal. This program is made possible courtesy of funding from the Florida Cattle Enhancement Board.
Registration and Course Details
St Lucie County (Port St Lucie) – February 13, 2020
Polk County – March 24, 2020 – Postponed
Brevard County (Cocoa) – April 9, 2020 – Postponed
Hendry County – TBA
Brazilian peppertree is an invasive plant found throughout central and south Florida. In the Florida Everglades, it is the most widely distributed and abundant invasive species occupying 30,379 ha (Rodgers, Pernas, and Hill 2014). According to the UF/IFAS Assessment, it is listed as a prohibited plant on the Federal Noxious Weed List, the Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services (FDACS) 5B-64.011 Prohibited Aquatic Plants, and FDACS 5B-57.007 Noxious Weed List.
USDA recently approved the release of a thrips (Pseudophilothrips ichini) and one galling species (Calophya latiforceps) for biological control of Brazilian peppertree. This team of UF research and extension experts will be conducting a series of field demonstrations showcasing the use of these biological control agents for Brazilian peppertree management.
Funding Courtesy of Florida Cattle Enhancement Board
Minteer, C., Wheeler, G., Gioeli, K., Kariuki, E. 2019-2020. Release strategy optimization of classical biological control agents for Brazilian peppertree in Florida. Florida Cattle Enhancement Board.
Rodgers, L., T. Pernas, and S. D. Hill. 2014. “Mapping invasive plant distributions in the Florida Everglades using the digital aerial sketch mapping technique.” Invasive Plant Science and Management 7: 360–74.