UF/IFAS Extension Agent: Begin Fertilization for North Florida Watermelons

Jim Rogers Research, Watermelon, Weather

By Clint Thompson The production season continues for the bulk of North Florida watermelon plants that survived the sub-freezing temperatures this past weekend. Growers need to consider their fertilizer options, especially following the recent rain events. “Most of their fertilizer that was in the bed preplant and even whatever they may have put out in their transplant solution is gone …

North Florida Watermelon Plants Impacted by Sub-Freezing Temperatures

Clint Thompson Florida, Watermelon, Weather

By Clint Thompson Sub-freezing temperatures impacted North Florida’s newly planted watermelons. But the impact was not as severe as it could have been, explains Bob Hochmuth, University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences (UF/IFAS) Regional Specialized Extension agent in Live Oak, Florida. “There are a few fields that probably will have to be replanted or at least partially …

Freeze Effect: Rain This Week Should Help with Cold Weekend

Jim Rogers Florida, Watermelon, Weather

Watermelon plants are in the ground in North Florida. Producers must now guard against potential sub-freezing temperatures that are in the forecast for the upcoming weekend. Bob Hochmuth, University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences (UF/IFAS) Regional Specialized Extension agent in Live Oak, Florida, said forecasts are predicting temperatures in the low-to-mid 30s Fahrenheit. “Rain ahead of the …

watermelon

Early Start for North Florida Watermelon Planting

Jim Rogers Florida, Watermelon, Weather

By Clint Thompson Ideal weather conditions meant an early start to watermelon planting for Florida producers in the Suwanee Valley area. Hopefully, it will translate to early harvests that meet the Memorial Day window. Bob Hochmuth, University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences (UF/IFAS) Regional Specialized Extension agent in Live Oak, Florida, discusses the impact, which included some …

close up photo of person holding green watermelon fruit

Florida Watermelon Industry to Feel Impact of Freeze

Jim Rogers Watermelon, Weather

By Clint Thompson The late-January freeze event that devastated some specialty crops in Florida likely impacted watermelon plants already in the ground. South Florida producers start planting in late December, so much of the crop was at least a month old when it encountered sub-freezing temperatures on Jan. 30. How that will impact the crop in North Florida and South …

Florida Vegetable Expert: There’s Going to Be Damage Out There

Jim Rogers Corn, Tomatoes, Watermelon, Weather

By Clint Thompson South Florida’s vegetable crop sustained some damage during last weekend’s cold temperatures. It was too cold not to. Gene McAvoy, University of Florida/IFAS Regional Vegetable Extension Agent IV Emeritus, said temperatures dipped as low as 30 degrees Fahrenheit in the Immokalee, Florida area. The young watermelon plants were especially at risk. “I think watermelons that were not …

UF/IFAS Watermelon Trials Focus on Nutrient/Water Efficiency

Jim Rogers Florida, Research, Watermelon

By Clint Thompson University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences (UF/IFAS) Extension agents are conducting on-farm trials this year to help watermelon producers be more efficient with their resources. Tyler Pittman, UF/IFAS Extension agent in Gilchrist County, explains what north Florida producers can expect from some of the research trials. “Here in Florida, one of our hottest topics …

Proper Pollination of Watermelon Helps Prevent Hollow Heart

Jim Rogers Watermelon

By Clint Thompson A common condition of watermelons can be rectified with a couple of pollination adjustments from producers. Gordon Johnson, an assistant professor and Extension specialist in fruits and vegetables at the University of Delaware, said proper pollination can help nullify any development of hollow heart. “Our research pretty much proves that inadequate pollen will lead to higher incidences …