Job Available

Position: Farm Manager at research station from Harris Moran Seed Company

Location: Immokalee, FL.
Description:  The Research Station Farm Manager is responsible for all aspects of growing vegetables (tomato, pepper, cucumber, squash, cantaloupe, watermelon, sweet corn, and beans) in 1-3 acre field plots on drip irrigation. The Farm Manager is also expected to oversee routine maintenance and repair of farm equipment and irrigation systems, and to assist with greenhouse vegetable production.

The successful applicant must desire to work within a team environment producing vegetables that meet the expectations and standards of breeding and research groups.

They offer an excellent benefits package; salary commensurate with experience.

Send resume and salary history to:
Harris Moran Seed Company
P.O. Box 4938. Modesto, CA 95352
Attn: human Resources or email to hr@hmclause.com
Equal Opportunity Employer / Drug-Free Workplace


Download the Lowdown

I'm sure that many of you probably don't care about the legal framework behind the pesticide laws.  But you might if you knew that reading an article about it could earn you one Core CEU towards your pesticide license.  My colleague Crystal Snodgrass (the vegetable agent in Manatee Co.) wrote an article for our Free, Industry Sponsored, UF/IFAS Hillsborough County Extension Online CEU website. It is entitled the Lowdown on Pesticide Laws.  Just click on the article, read it, follow the link at the bottom to the quiz.  Get 70% or better on the quiz and I will email you a CEU credit.  It is that easy.  If you are ready to read the article go to www.tiny.cc/ceus 

Just Released Sterile Ruellia

Here is another opportunity to license UF plant developments.  These plants are sterile cultivars of  Ruellia in violet and white.  For more information about the Invitation to Negotiate please click on this link. http://ffsp.net/resources/ITN12-08-09.pdf

Florida Foundation Seed Producers, Inc. (FFSP) is announcing this Invitation to Negotiate (ITN) for the exclusive licensing opportunity of the 'R10-102' and 'R10-108' ruellia simplex cultivars. These cultivars were developed by the ruellia breeding program at the University of Florida's Department of Environmental Horticulture.

'R10-102' (U.S. Patent Pending) and 'R10-108' (U.S. Patent Pending) are new sterile Ruellia simplex cultivars which are characterized by excellent performance in both full sun and partial shade environments, prolific flowering habits throughout the flowering season, large violet flowers ('R10-102') or large white flowers ('R10-108'), and lack of fruit production when grown in northwestern, north central, and southeastern Florida. These Ruellia cultivars are expected to have excellent landscape performance.


New Whitefly Website

You might find this website useful in learning about and managing whiteflies...
Posted on May 30, 2012 by Kathy Oliver of Manatee County Extension

The University of Florida has announced a new tool for management of whitefly: http://www.flwhitefly.org/.  Florida Whitefly is a website portal focused on Florida whitefly issues of concern to landscape professionals, homeowners, and the general public. Available on the website are:

■Scripted presentations for educators covering general whitefly introduction, other problems with whiteflies in Florida, current whitefly problems, whitefly monitoring, and whitefly management.

■E-Learning modules that can be taken for FDACS-AES Continuing Education Units(CEUs) at no charge.

■Information on submitting samples, county websites, FAQs, and photos.

Ficus whitefly, Singhiella simplex. Photo: FDACS-DPI

Florida Whitefly is a partnership between the University of Florida (UF), IFAS Extension, Department of Entomology and Nematology, Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services-Division of Plant Industry, UF/IFAS Extension-Broward County, UF/IFAS Extension-Lee County, UF/IFAS Extension-Miami-Dade County, UF/IFAS-Extension-Palm Beach County, Southern Plant Diagnostic Network, IPM Florida, and Pest Management University.

Holloway Nursery Liquidating Plants

Holloway Nursery is trying to sell off their plant inventory. Plants are all marked way down to move off the premises. For more information call Sue at 813-737-6043 or visit the nursery at 4201 Holloway Rd, Plant City, FL during the nursery hours.


Bean Plataspid

Here is a little bug to be on the look out for; the bean plataspid (a.k.a. the Kudzu bug).  It is a bug found in the Old World and first reported in 10/09 in a few counties in NE Georgia.  After two years it has spread to Alabama, N. Florida, South Carolina, North Carolina and S. Virginia.  It is a pest of legumes and some other crop plants.  It also congregates around structures.  It is a fairly small bug about 3.5-6 mm and looks something like a ladybug or stinkbug.  It can also form three generations per year and stinks when disturbed.  Here is a link to more information.   http://entnemdept.ifas.ufl.edu/creatures/field/bugs/bean_plataspid.htm  and this one http://www.freshfromflorida.com/pi/pest-alerts/megacopta-cribraria.html  While it is not in our area now it probably won't be too long before they start showing up.    The photo is an adult bean plataspid. 
Photograph courtesy of Joseph Eger, Dow AgroSciences

There's an App for That!

There is a new app for nursery and green professionals called IPMPro.  It is currently available for Ipad, Iphone, and Android.
This is what the site says about what it can do, as I still have an old flip phone and haven't looked at it.

Major pest and cultural practices reference at your finger tips!
Automatic text-like alerts for time-sensitive pest issues and cultural practices -alert date adjusted specifically for your location!
Viewable as a calendar or chronological list of action items for easy reference!
Contains images, pest lifecycle, and management options for major pests of woody plants!
Provides pesticide recommendations for major diseases and insects!
Built-in pesticide recordkeeping to make outdoor, and on-the-go recordkeeping easy!
BONUS Weed content!

Here is a webpage that gives more information if you are interested. www.impproapp.com 
You can also always call you local Extension Agent! :)


Dr. Dougbug's Newsletter

I thought that you might like to read some of the articles in one of my colleague's newsletter.  It is well done and has some very timely topics.  Dr. Doug Cauldwell is the commercial horticulture agent in Collier County and deals with a lot of critters before they make it up to Hillsborough.  He has some really good videos on different pests which the newsletter links to.  It is worth a read if you have a few moments to spare.  Especially on the whiteflies and viburnum mildew.  Here is the link http://hillsborough.extension.ufl.edu/Ag/AgOrnProd/documents/DougsBugsandShrubsBuzzNewsletterSpring2012.pdf


Extension Education Opportunites

There are some local event opportunities that you might want to participate in from Extension.

The 2012 Vegetable Pest, Disease, and Nutrient Workshop-June 26, 2012, 8:00-16:00. This is a full day workshop on the previously mentioned topics commonly found in vegetables.  This field day/workshop will be hosted at the Gulf Coast Research and Education Center in Balm (GCREC). To register contact Dr. Hugh Smith, GCREC at 813-633-4124 or send an email to him at hughasmith@ufl.edu

Disease Control and Plant Health Strategies (Sponsored by BASF)- June 28, 2012, at the GCREC from 8:00-12:30 with lunch included.  This workshop will have Dr. Ann Chase, Dr. Gary Vallad, and Paul Pilon discussing the topics of diseases, management and plant health.  CEUs will be available.  To register click on this link http://www.eminj.com/BASF/PageantIntrinsic/Registration.cfm  To see the agenda click here.  http://hillsborough.extension.ufl.edu/Ag/AgOrnProd/documents/GCRECDiseaseControlPlantHealthStrategiesinOrnamentalsSeminarAgenda.pdf

The Great CEU Round up- July 11, 9 am - 4 pm.  Get up to 6 CEUs in many categories at the Hillsborough Extension office.  Here is a link for more info.  http://hillsborough.extension.ufl.edu/prohort/events/documents/2012-GreatCEURoundUp.pdf

The Small Farms and Alternative Enterprises Conference- Kissimmee, FL July 27-29,  Many events, tours, seminars, tradeshow and social networking opportunities for small farmers.  Here is the web page for more information.  http://www.conference.ifas.ufl.edu/smallfarms/index.html  Don't miss out on early bird registration by July 9th


Sharing the Love

How would you like to decrease voluntary turnover of your employees by roughly 11% and increase the return on equity of your business by 3.9% compared to similiar firms? A study released from The National Bureau of Economic Research found that firms that make use of group incentive pay with supportive employee policies achieved a reduction of employee turnover and an increase in the return of equity compared with other firms of similar size.  The co-authors Douglas L. Kruse, Joseph R. Blasi, and Richard B. Freeman analyzed 780 firms that applied to “100 best companies to work for in America" from 2005 to 2007.  They found this to be true in companies which they ranked in a "shared capitalism index" that used incentives such as Employee Stock Ownership Plans, cash profit sharing plans, gain sharing plans, Deferred Profit-Sharing Plans, and stock options.  It seems with these motivations employees are less likely to leave a firm.  These firms also had policies that allowed employees to participate in the decision-making process, valued information sharing, teamwork, and high trust supervision which also led to a higher degree of employee stability.  If you would like to read the NBER Digest of this paper follow this link. http://www.nber.org/digest/jun12/w17745.html   To order the entire paper click on this link. http://www.nber.org/papers/w17745


IFAS Releases New Red Pummelo

Here is an opportunity for a citrus propagator...
Florida Foundation Seed Producers, Inc. (FFSP) is announcing this Invitation to Negotiate (ITN) for the exclusive licensing opportunity of the '5-1-99-5' red pummelo cultivar. This cultivar was developed by the citrus breeding program at the University of Florida's Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences Citrus Research and Education Center.

This new cultivar is a medium-large sized pummelo with attractive, uniformly-sized, dark-red fleshed segments and a thinner rind than other favored pummelo cultivars. Fruit of '5-1-99-5' is juicy, and has a slight grapefruit-like bitterness to it. Fruit of '5-1-99-5' is high in furanocoumarin content and is seedy, however, the seeds are located near the core of the fruit, and do not interfere with eating. Fruit size is quite uniform, ranging between 160mm to 180mm in diameter and 140mm to 160mm tall on average. Fruit tends to grow in clusters, and the rind can exhibit a pink blushing where fruit touch. Trees of '5-1-99-5' are obloid in structure with upright branches which exhibit drooping after fruiting has commenced. Trees are large, growing to heights of 3.35m when left un-pruned. Tree spread can reach around 3.4m. Trunk diameter reaches 13cm at 30cm above the ground.

For more information about this cultivar, please go to the following link  http%3a%2f%2fr20.rs6.net%2ftn.jsp%3fe%3d001UDkahJNgOGQZyoPyr4B1TwvvWpX1PTp3DUMeNEteAav4cgMExW6s05_cKKIfs7kczMPK3tUqY7s0wtcIK_I2hZTDRkUa6y67QgWyduLUI7mLRFUDyDbOy5LrBYiH8zfiJJSRbfV6Pi8%3d


Regional Southwest Florida Agriculture Water Update Meeting

I attended the SWFWMD Agriculture Water Update Meeting a couple of weeks ago in Plant City at the Trinkle Center.  The purpose of this meeting was to allow growers and ranchers operating within the boundaries of SWFWMD the opportunity to interact with agency leaders involved in water policy and to hear the latest updates related to agricultural water issues. Here is a brief layout summarizing and encapsulating the most important points of each speaker.  Mark Hammond-SWFWMD, spoke about water use and the ag programs.  John Abendroth – FDEP, summarized where we are currently at with the numeric nutrient criteria, total minimum daily loads (TMDLs), and basin management action plans (BMAPS).  Ann Shortelle – FDEP, summarized upcoming plans to make applications to water management districts for ground water pumping and renewal of consumptive use permits more efficient and consistent across and within the districts.  Rich Budell – FDACS, discussed the Central Florida Water Initiative (CFWI where the three districts meet in Central Florida) as a collaborative effort to manage the water resources in the central part of the state, and spoke about a new program of payment for environmental services by capturing water on agricultural land and receiving payments from the water management districts. This seems like a very innovative way to capture, treat, and amplify water storage in a collaborative way between landowners, government, and the water management districts. He also spoke about the importance of all agricultural producers signing up with the appropriate Best Management Programs (BMPS).  Which I must reiterate for all producers the importance of signing up under the BMP programs.  This removes the burden of proof from the producer in case nutrient contamination is in the area. The last speaker was Dr. Joan Dusky- UF Assistant Dean of Extension, summarizing how UF works collaboratively between water management districts, industry, government, and agriculture to benefit the public. She spoke about the latest research involving management of water resources across all different levels from the molecular to the farm. She also summarized by saying UF research/extension is ready, willing, and able to help bring sound science to bear in these ongoing efforts.


Landscaper Opportunity

Soho Landscape is looking to fill a position that is vacant...

We are a small boutique landscape and lawn maintenance company based in South Tampa. We are looking to find ONE new team member who is interested in learning our business and eventually running a crew.

We are looking for someone who has attention to detail.
You must have reliable transportation. We start and stop each day in South Tampa.
You must have a valid drivers license and social security number.
Must pass a background check and drug check.
We require all team members to wear uniforms.
We have a very low turn over in team members because we are very selective in our hiring process.
If you are not committed to working outdoors, in the heat, in the sun, in the cold, then do NOT apply.
Knowledge of the Florida landscape and Best Management Practices in horticulture will be viewed as favorable; however, not necessacary.

This position is for FULL TIME employment - NOT seasonal.
Your first 6 months of employment will consist of 70% lawn maintenance work and 30% landscaping work.
We process payroll every two weeks.

Lawn maintenance work = running an edger, line trimmer, hedge trimmer, push mower, and eventually using the larger zero turn mower
Landscape work = digging holes, transplanting, mulching, pulling weeds, pruning

We also maintain much of our own equipment. This means you will be responsible for assisting in washing the work trucks, cleaning equipment, changing air filters/spark plugs, sharpening blades, etc.

All new team members will be required to pass our training program within 90 days. After completion of the 90 day training program, you are eligable for a raise (typically $1 to $2 per hour depending on performance).

We are looking to bring on our ONE new team member by mid June, ready to start work on June 18th.

Our company: Soho Landscape
Here is the process for getting an interview:
1) Visit our website and submit an email via our website. http://www.soholandscape.com/home
2) We will contact you via phone/email. We will email you an official job application.
3) You will fill out the three page application and based on your responses, we may contact you for an in person interview.
4) If we wish to offer you a job position after the interview, you will be required to pass a drug test and background check.