Carts Needed for Youth at Auction!

We are looking for about four (4) small nursery carts to assist the youth at the Florida Strawberry Festival Youth Plant Show and Sale with moving plants around the show ring.  We will be using them on Wednesday, Feb. 25 at the plant check in and then again on the day of the sale on March 1.  You can pick them as soon as the plants are moved out to the buyers on Sunday after the auction.  If you can help, please give Shawn a call at 813-629-6104.    Thank you for supporting our next generation of growers!


Potting Soil Recycling Workshop Feb 26

We will be having a workshop that will look at two methods of turning your waste into an input and save you money in the long run.  I will be reporting the findings of the Southern Agriculture Research and Education On-Farm Grant that was awarded to myself and John Pearson at Stardust Farms.  The project was using a large scale method of solarization to recycle used potting soil.  It has proven to be a great, inexpensive way to treat soil to use it back in production.  We will also have Dr. Monica Ozorez-Hampton teaching about composting dumped soil and plants for safe reuse.  A free lunch from Diamond R Fertilizer will be available.  I would also like to mention our sponsors of Southern SARE and Hillsborough County Soil and Water Conservation District in helping out with this project.  This is a workshop you will not want to miss!  Register at the link below.

What: Recycling Used Potting Soil Workshop
When:  Feb. 26, 2015
Where:  Hillsborough County Extension Office
Time: 09:30 - 14:00
Lunch:  Will be served
Cost:   Free
Register at www.soilreuse.eventbrite.com 


Two New Weed Factsheets

Here are two new fact sheets dealing with ornamental weeds that you might like to read.  We will be having more in the series so comment or shoot me an email of your not-so favorite weeds.

Biology and Management of Eclipta (Eclipta prostrata) in Ornamental Crop Production

Figure 2. Eclipta growth in a mulched landscape bed. Note the purplish stems, lanceolate leaves, and prostrate growth habit.

Eclipta grows aggressively in containers and can outcompete nursery crops for water, nutrients, and light. Plants flower in as little as five weeks after germination and produce thousands of seeds over the course of a growing season, and stem fragments left on the soil or media surface following hand-weeding or cultivation can root and reproduce vegetatively. This 4-page fact sheet describes the plant, its biology, and recommendations for physical, cultural, and chemical control. Written by Chris Marble, Shawn Steed, and Nathan S. Boyd, and published by the UF Department of Environmental Horticulture, January 2015. (Photo: Annette Chandler, UF/IFAS) http://edis.ifas.ufl.edu/ep512

Biology and Management of Hairy Bittercress (Cardamine hirsute) in Ornamental Crop Production

Bittercress commonly grows in the potting media of container-grown ornamentals and often through drainage holes in nursery containers. It also can be a problem in propagation houses, greenhouses, and in the field. This 6-page fact sheet provides species description, plant biology, and management recommendations. Written by Chris Marble, Shawn Steed, and Nathan S. Boyd, and published by the UF Department of Environmental Horticulture, December 2014.http://edis.ifas.ufl.edu/ep511