Tag Archive: Week

Weed of the Week: Cogongrass

Weed of the Week: Cogongrass

Cogongrass will take over native or cultivated vegetation, as can be seen in this hay field. Photo credit: Doug Mayo

Cogongrass was accidentally introduced into Alabama in the 1900’s, but intentionally brought to Florida in the 1930’s as a potential forage and soil stabilizer. Currently it can be found in 73 countries and on every continent. Since being introduced Cogongrass has spread to nearly every county in Florida, and today is considered a major pest issue. This warm-season perennial grass species, has an extensive root system, with 60% of the plant’s total biomass underground, which makes control very difficult.

For assistance with weed identification or for developing a control plan for your operation, please contact your local  county extension agent

For more information on this topic please see the following UF/IFAS Publication:

Cogongrass (Imperata cylindrica) Biology, Ecology, and Management in Florida Grazing Lands

 

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Author: Kalyn Waters – kalyn.waters@ufl.edu

Holmes County Extension Director working in the areas of Agricultural Management in row crop, natural resources, livestock and forage production. Specialized in Beef Cattle Production in the area of reproductive, nutritional and finical management.
http://holmes.ufl.ifas.edu

Kalyn Waters

Permanent link to this article: http://franklin.ifas.ufl.edu/newsletters/2017/09/22/weed-of-the-week-cogongrass/

Weed of the Week: Coffee Senna

Weed of the Week: Coffee Senna

Coffee senna is a troublesome pasture weed that is toxic to livestock. Photo credit: Doug Mayo

Coffee Senna is not only an issue for livestock producers, as seeds are toxic when consumed, it also causes issues for cotton and peanut farmers in the southern states. The scientific name Senna occidentalis comes from Arabic and Latin roots, with Senna meaning “these plants” and occidentalis meaning “western,” in reference to its origin. While closely related to Sicklepod, Coffee Senna does not respond the same to many of the herbicides used for Sicklepod control in row crop production, making it challenging to control.

 

For help to identify weeds or to develop a control plan for your operation, please contact your county extension agent. 

For more information on this topic please see the following UF/IFAS Publication:

Weed Management in Pastures and Rangeland—2017

 

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Author: Kalyn Waters – kalyn.waters@ufl.edu

Holmes County Extension Director working in the areas of Agricultural Management in row crop, natural resources, livestock and forage production. Specialized in Beef Cattle Production in the area of reproductive, nutritional and finical management.
http://holmes.ufl.ifas.edu

Kalyn Waters

Permanent link to this article: http://franklin.ifas.ufl.edu/newsletters/2017/09/16/weed-of-the-week-coffee-senna/

Weed of the Week: Sicklepod

Weed of the Week: Sicklepod

Gerald Holmes, California Polytechnic State University – Bugwood.org

Sicklepod is commonly known as Coffeeweed and is a major issue for livestock producers across the Southeast. This semi-woody annual legume is native to the American tropics. Sicklepod is known to be toxic, affecting liver, kidney and muscle function in livestock. The stems and leaves, as well as seeds, contain toxins, whether green or dry. 

For help to identify weeds or to develop a control plan for your operation, please contact your county extension agent. 

For more information on this topic please see the following UF/IFAS Publication:

Weed Management in Pastures and Rangeland—2017

 

PG

Author: Kalyn Waters – kalyn.waters@ufl.edu

Holmes County Extension Director working in the areas of Agricultural Management in row crop, natural resources, livestock and forage production. Specialized in Beef Cattle Production in the area of reproductive, nutritional and finical management.
http://holmes.ufl.ifas.edu

Kalyn Waters

Permanent link to this article: http://franklin.ifas.ufl.edu/newsletters/2017/08/25/weed-of-the-week-sicklepod/

Weed of the Week: Goatweed

Weed of the Week: Goatweed

Image 1: Goatweed seeds are very small and are enclosed in yellow to brown capsules. Photo Credit: Dr. Brent Sellers

Once just an issue in Central Florida Orange groves, Goatweed (Scoparia dulcis), also referred to as sweet broom and licorice weed, is now an issue for many pasture owners in North Florida. The spread of this prolific weed has been attributed to many factors including seed production, seed movement from groves to pastures by wildlife and mowing equipment, and its extreme tolerance to many herbicides. Overgrazed pastures, disturbed areas, and sod harvest are prime areas for Goatweed growth.

For help to identify weeds or to develop a control plan for your operation, please contact your county extension agent. 

For more information on this topic please see the following UF/IFAS Publication:

Goatweed Biology and Control in Pastures

 

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Author: Kalyn Waters – kalyn.waters@ufl.edu

Holmes County Extension Director working in the areas of Agricultural Management in row crop, natural resources, livestock and forage production. Specialized in Beef Cattle Production in the area of reproductive, nutritional and finical management.
http://holmes.ufl.ifas.edu

Kalyn Waters

Permanent link to this article: http://franklin.ifas.ufl.edu/newsletters/2017/08/18/weed-of-the-week-goatweed/

Weed of the Week: Southern Sandbur

Weed of the Week: Southern Sandbur

Left: Southern sandbur seedhead. Right: Close-up picture of individual burs. Credit: Hunter Smith

Across the Southern United States, Southern Sandbur (aka sandspur) can be found. It is an annual grass that grows in cropland and pastures, thriving in dry sandy soils. Southern Sandbur has a shallow fibrous root system and can easily invade poorly managed fields or pastures. It is known to impact the quality of hay fields, as well as grazed pastures. Seeds will start to germinate in late spring, with germination continuing through the summer and fall.

For help to identify weeds or for developing a control plan for your operation, please contact your county extension agent. 

For more information on this topic please see the following UF/IFAS Publication:

Identification and Control of Southern Sandbur in Hayfields

 

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Author: Kalyn Waters – kalyn.waters@ufl.edu

Holmes County Extension Director working in the areas of Agricultural Management in row crop, natural resources, livestock and forage production. Specialized in Beef Cattle Production in the area of reproductive, nutritional and finical management.
http://holmes.ufl.ifas.edu

Kalyn Waters

Permanent link to this article: http://franklin.ifas.ufl.edu/newsletters/2017/08/11/weed-of-the-week-southern-sandbur/

Weed of the Week: Showy Crotalaria

Weed of the Week: Showy Crotalaria

Showy crotalaria is a common weed in the Panhandle that is toxic to livestock.  Photo credit: Doug Mayo

Commonly known as Showy Rattlebox, Showy Crotalaria is a fast growing summer annual that germinates in early spring and flowers in late summer. As a member of the legume family, it was brought to the United States to be used as a cover crop to help set nitrogen in dry sandy soils. Showy Crotalaria is toxic to livestock, containing high levels of alkaloids, which commonly cause issues in cattle and horses in the southeastern states.

For help to identify weeds or developing a control plan for your operation, please contact your county extension agent. 

For more information on this topic please see the following UF/IFAS Publication: Weed Snapshot: Showy Crotalaria

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Author: Kalyn Waters – kalyn.waters@ufl.edu

Holmes County Extension Director working in the areas of Agricultural Management in row crop, natural resources, livestock and forage production. Specialized in Beef Cattle Production in the area of reproductive, nutritional and finical management.
http://holmes.ufl.ifas.edu

Kalyn Waters

Permanent link to this article: http://franklin.ifas.ufl.edu/newsletters/2017/08/04/weed-of-the-week-showy-crotalaria/

Weed of the Week: Tropical Soda Apple

Weed of the Week: Tropical Soda Apple

This week’s featured weed is tropical soda apple, a serious weed problem in many pastures and natural areas of Florida.  This invasive weed is very prolific and can infest a pasture in a very short time.  Its fruit are toxic to goats, and the unpalatable thorny leaves results in reduced forage production and lower stocking rates.  This article provides information about managing this invasive weed.

For help identifying weeds or developing a control plan for your operation, please contact your county extension agent. 

For more information on this topic please see the following UF/IFAS Publication: Tropical Soda Apple: Biology, Ecology, and Management of a Noxious Weed in Florida

 

 

PG

Author: Kalyn Waters – kalyn.waters@ufl.edu

Holmes County Extension Director working in the areas of Agricultural Management in row crop, natural resources, livestock and forage production. Specialized in Beef Cattle Production in the area of reproductive, nutritional and finical management.
http://holmes.ufl.ifas.edu

Kalyn Waters

Permanent link to this article: http://franklin.ifas.ufl.edu/newsletters/2017/07/28/weed-of-the-week-tropical-soda-apple/

NISAW 2017: National Invasive Species Awareness Week

Aliens are invading our forests, pastures, fields and lawns. Well, okay, not aliens but invasive species are invading our beautiful landscapes.  Invasive species are non-native or exotic species that do not naturally occur in an area, cause economic or environmental harm, or negatively impact human health.  These invasive species have become the number one threat to biodiversity on protected lands.  However, invasive species do not know boundaries, and as a result, public, private lands, natural and man-made water bodies, and associated watersheds are affected.   National Invasive Species Awareness Week (NISAW) is February 27-March 3, 2017.

It is estimated that Florida Agriculture loses $ 179 million annually from invasive pests (http://www.defenders.org/sites/default/files/publications/florida.pdf). Generally, eradication of an invasive species is difficult and expensive.  Most of the mitigation efforts focus on control rather than eradication.

EDDMaps (Early Detection and Distribution Mapping System), a web-based mapping system for reporting invasive species, currently has 667 different invasive plants reported in Florida. Many invasive insects, animals and diseases have also landed in Florida.  Some famous invasive species in Florida include cogongrass, wild hogs, red imported fire ants, Chinese tallow, and lionfish.

For National Invasive Species Awareness Week, the University of Florida IFAS Northwest Extension District will highlight new invasive species each day. There are a couple of ways to receive this information during NISAW:

You can help us control invasive species in several ways. First, always be cautious when bringing plants or plant materials into the state.  Plants or even dead plant material can harbor weeds, insects and diseases that can become invasive in our state.  Second, when you see something suspicious, contact your local extension agent for help identifying the weed, insect or disease.  Third, you can volunteer your time and effort.  Invasive species control is difficult and requires a cooperative effort for funding and manpower.  The state has several Cooperative Invasive Species Management Areas (CISMA) in which public and private organizations work together to control invasive species in their area.  These CISMAs hold work days in which volunteers can help remove invasive species from the environment.

For more information about NISAW or invasive species, contact your local county extension agent.

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Author: Jennifer Bearden – bearden@ufl.edu

Agriculture Agent Okaloosa County

Jennifer Bearden

Permanent link to this article: http://franklin.ifas.ufl.edu/newsletters/2017/02/27/nisaw-2017-national-invasive-species-awareness-week/

Giving Thanks During Farm-City Week

16-farm-city-weekFlorida Farm Bureau – November 9, 2016

Farm-City Week is a time to give thanks for the valuable partnerships between urban and rural residents. The week will be celebrated statewide, Nov. 16-23, 2016.

Farmers produce high quality food and fiber for everyone to enjoy. Their partnerships with grocers, truck drivers, processors, scientists, consumers and many others all play important roles in getting the food from the fields to household tables.

“Thanksgiving is about celebrating the harvest of fresh food that we enjoy with our families,” said Florida Farm Bureau President John Hoblick. “Farm-City Week also gives us the opportunity to be thankful for the partnerships between farming and urban communities.  These partnerships make it possible for us to enjoy a nutritious and bountiful food supply.”

Local Farm Bureau members will sponsor multiple Farm-City Week events preceding the Thanksgiving holiday to celebrate the relationships that provide food abundance and strengthen the nation’s economy. Events include kid-friendly activities and educational demonstrations, vintage farm equipment displays, farm tours, food donations and essay and poster contests.

Farm-City Week activities also highlight various food collection activities by farmers and ranchers on behalf of food banks and other charitable organizations in local communities throughout Florida.

For details about the Farm-City Week event in your community, contact your local Farm Bureau office at http://www.floridafarmbureau.org/county-farm-bureaus/

 

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Author: admin – webmaster@ifas.ufl.edu

admin

Permanent link to this article: http://franklin.ifas.ufl.edu/newsletters/2016/11/12/giving-thanks-during-farm-city-week/

Celebrating Choctawhatchee Bay – National Estuaries Week

Celebrating Choctawhatchee Bay – National Estuaries Week

Rocky Bayou Aquatic Preserve - Niceville, Florida

Rocky Bayou Aquatic Preserve – Choctawhatchee Bay, Niceville, Florida – Photo by Laura Tiu

September 17-24, 2016 was the nation’s 28th time to celebrate America’s coasts and estuaries during National Estuaries Week.  This week helps us to remember to appreciate the challenges these coastal ecosystems face, along with their beauty and utility.

Estuaries, semi-enclosed bodies of water with both fresh and saltwater, dot the Gulf Coast of the United States from Brownsville Texas to Key West, Florida. These estuaries are important as they serve as drainage basins for many of the large river systems, and play a significant role in the nation’s seafood industry.

Florida’s six major Panhandle estuaries, which includes Perdido Bay, Pensacola Bay (including Escambia Bay), Choctawhatchee Bay, St. Andrew Bay, St. Joseph Bay and Apalachicola Bay, are unique ecosystems teeming with life and diversity. Critical habitat includes important seagrass beds that support both the larval and adult stages of fish and invertebrates. In Choctawhatchee Bay, there is also critical foraging habitat for the federally protected Gulf sturgeon (Acipenser oxyrinchus desotoi) and stream habitat for the endangered Okaloosa darter.

Choctawhatchee Bay is in Okaloosa and Walton counties in the Florida Panhandle. It is approximately 30 miles long and from three and a half to six miles wide, with a total area of 129 square miles. It is relatively shallow varying from 10 to 40 feet deep. Large portions of the western half of Choctawhatchee Bay are militarily restricted (Eglin Airforce Base).  The Bay is fed by the Choctawhatchee River and numerous small creeks that feed into several bayous.  The only opening to the Gulf of Mexico is the East Pass, which ironically is at the Western end of the Bay in Destin, Florida.  This is where the saltwater and freshwater mix.

Continued industrial and residential development in the watershed regions that drain into many of these estuaries has impacted them in a number of ways. Pollution comes from storm water runoff, lawns, industry and farms. The shorelines are impacted by development, which causes sedimentation and in turn loss of vegetation.  This reduces water clarity and habitat for wildlife.

Many organizations work to protect this estuary and reach out to others through education, restoration, and recreation events. Choctawhatchee Basin Alliance (CBA) is one such organization committed to ensuring sustainable utilization of the Choctawhatchee River and Bay.  They, working with their partners, provide leadership for the stewardship of the Bay. Alison McDowell, director of the CBA, notes that 75-85% of commercially and recreationally important species that are caught in the Gulf spend part of their lifecycle in the Bay. McDowell says a key factor in the Bay’s health is monitoring the water quality and reducing erosion, and the Oyster Reef Restoration program started in 2006 does just that.

There are often opportunities for the general public to join in some of the conservation efforts taking place in the Bay. For more information, like the Okaloosa or Walton County Extension Facebook page.

Kayaking Choctawhatchee Bay

Kayaking Choctawhatchee Bay – Photo by Laura Tiu

 

 

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Author: Laura Tiu – lgtiu@ufl.edu

Sea Grant Extension Agent – Okaloosa and Walton Counties

Laura Tiu

Permanent link to this article: http://franklin.ifas.ufl.edu/newsletters/2016/09/23/celebrating-choctawhatchee-bay-national-estuaries-week/

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