In this Issue:
  • Reducing Water Demand for Agriculture
  • Solar Pump Systems for Watering Livestock
  • Manage Potassium to Control Cotton Stemphylium Leafspot
  • USDA Develops Cover Crop Chart
  • UF/IFAS Evaluating Soil Mapping Technology for Variable Rate Applications
  • Jefferson County U-Pick Blueberry Farm Tour June 13
  • A New Website For Selecting Plants to Enhance Ecosystem Services
  • Spring is the Ideal Time for Aquatic Herbicide Application
  • Tung Trees – Historic Crop; Toxic Legacy
  • New Fact Sheets Added to EDIS in February
  • Natural Resources

    Reducing Water Demand for Agriculture

    sod-based rotation field under a center pivot at the NFREC-Marianna taken May 28, 2015.  Peanuts are in the upper right, 2 year old bahia grass is in the upper left, and 1 year old bahia grass is in the lower left.  Cotton is in the forefront.  Picture by David Wright.

    Dan Dourte, Ron Bartel, Sheeja George, David Wright, Jim Marois, UF/IFAS NFREC

    Cotton and peanuts are grown on nearly 2 million irrigated acres in the Southeastern U.S. The consumptive water use for irrigation has significantly impacted groundwater resources, spring flows and stream flows in many parts of this region, particularly during severe droughts. In the …

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    Permanent link to this article: http://nwdistrict.ifas.ufl.edu/phag/2015/06/12/reducing-water-demand-for-agriculture/

    Solar Pump Systems for Watering Livestock

    Goodchild Solar panel

    It can be cost-prohibitive to run power lines long distances to provide electricity for pumping water to livestock tanks. One alternative is to install a solar water system. Solar water pumps can be used to pump water from wells, ponds or creeks. Even if you have to dig a well, it is cheaper than …

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    Permanent link to this article: http://nwdistrict.ifas.ufl.edu/phag/2015/06/12/solar-water-systems-for-watering-livestock/

    Manage Potassium to Control Cotton Stemphylium Leafspot

    Stemphylium in cotton.  Image credit: http://thomascountyag.com/2013/08/09/target-spot-vs-stemphylium-leaf-spot/

    Now is the time to implement potassium (K) management plans for cotton. Late-season K deficiency is linked to cotton leafspot (Stemphylium) disease. Stemphylium begins with minor leaf spotting and can lead to severe premature defoliation under certain circumstances.

    Potassium in plant cells is vital for the regulation of water use (through stomatal activity) and crop …

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    Permanent link to this article: http://nwdistrict.ifas.ufl.edu/phag/2015/06/05/manage-potassium-to-control-cotton-stemphylium-leafspot/

    USDA Develops Cover Crop Chart

    Source:   Agricultural Research Service’s Northern Great Plains Research Laboratory

    An online tool called the “Cover Crop Chart” is helping U.S. farmers decide which cover crops to plant and is generating interest from growers in other countries.

    Cover crops can help reduce soil erosion, increase organic matter, improve early weed control, and provide forage for animals. They can also benefit the public by …

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    Permanent link to this article: http://nwdistrict.ifas.ufl.edu/phag/2015/06/05/usda-develops-cover-crop-chart/

    UF/IFAS Evaluating Soil Mapping Technology for Variable Rate Applications

    Fig. 1. MSP3 in operation with water jets engaged to clean the pH sensor (Mackowiak).

    The next generation of agriculture Best Management Practices (BMPs) will likely include new soil mapping technologies. Resulting maps are increasingly being used to guide variable applications of irrigation, fertilizer, herbicides, and pesticides in the field. On-the-go soil sensors have spatial dependence ranges less than the distances used by USDA soil surveys, or even most grid …

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    Permanent link to this article: http://nwdistrict.ifas.ufl.edu/phag/2015/05/29/ufifas-evaluating-soil-mapping-technology-for-variable-rate-applications/

    Jefferson County U-Pick Blueberry Farm Tour June 13

    Whether you are a part time or full-time farmer, U-pick blueberries can provide additional farm income.  For the past several years, a Jefferson County farmer, Pete Crosby has been developing his operation.  Blue Sky Farm is nearing its grand opening, and is celebrating by inviting the public to come out to tour …

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    Permanent link to this article: http://nwdistrict.ifas.ufl.edu/phag/2015/05/29/jefferson-county-u-pick-blueberry-farm-tour-june-13/

    A New Website For Selecting Plants to Enhance Ecosystem Services

    In a previous Panhandle Ag-e Newsletter article (Tools for Trapping Pests and Attracting Beneficial Insects), I described some new multifunctional tactics to monitor pests and enhance beneficial insects. Here we are publicizing a new website that will be online within the next few weeks which will enable selection of plant species for any type …

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    Permanent link to this article: http://nwdistrict.ifas.ufl.edu/phag/2015/05/15/a-new-website-for-selecting-plants-to-enhance-ecosystem-services/

    Spring is the Ideal Time for Aquatic Herbicide Application

    As water temperatures increase aquatic weed growth increases. Be sure to monitor ponds closely and control weeds before the problem gets too large.
Photo Credit: Mark Mauldin

    Similar to Goldilocks’ porridge, water temperature doesn’t need to be too hot or too cold, it needs to be just right for using aquatic herbicides (70o – 80o F). Here in Florida these optimum water temperatures occur in the spring. Water temperature largely regulates the growth of most aquatic weeds; cool temperatures slow or stop …

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    Permanent link to this article: http://nwdistrict.ifas.ufl.edu/phag/2015/04/24/spring-is-the-ideal-time-for-aquatic-herbicide-application/

    Tung Trees – Historic Crop; Toxic Legacy

    The bright blossoms of the tung oil tree come from the center of new growth.  Photo by Jed Dillard

    The highway from Monticello to Tallahassee (US 90) is famous for its summer blooming crape myrtle trees donated by nurseryman Fred Mahan. This month, there’s another historic tree flowering along that highway, as well as in other parts of Jefferson county and North Florida. It’s the tung tree, imported from China to build a thriving …

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    Permanent link to this article: http://nwdistrict.ifas.ufl.edu/phag/2015/03/27/tung-trees-historic-crop-toxic-legacy/

    New Fact Sheets Added to EDIS in February

    The University of Florida IFAS Extension offers a database of fact sheets available for free download on the Internet called EDIS (Electronic Data Information Source) that has many publications of interest to farmers and ranchers in Northwest Florida. Each fact sheet has a PDF or printer friendly link in the top left corner. The following are just …

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    Permanent link to this article: http://nwdistrict.ifas.ufl.edu/phag/2015/03/13/new-fact-sheets-added-to-edis-in-february/

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