Friday, June 22, 2012

Caladium Festival

The festival is held in Lake Placid on August 24, 25 and 26.  Friday and Saturday 9 - 4 and Sunday 10 - 3.  UF/IFAS has 2 new varieties that will be available this year "Royal Flush" and "Tapestry". For more information on the festival.

Picture is of "Royal Flush" by Dr. Deng, UF/IFAS

Thursday, June 21, 2012

Pest Alert - New Exotic Weevils

Did you know that exotic giant palm weevils are currently a potential Florida threat?

The two exotic species of concern are the Red Palm Weevil (Rhynchophorus ferrugineus) and the South American Palm Weevil (Rhynchophorus palmarum). They can be very difficult to differentiate from our native species-the palmetto weevil (Rhynchophorus cruentatus).

Dr. Robin Giblin-Davis from the Ft. Lauderdale Research and Education Center has a UF/IFAS Featured Creatures publication on our native palmetto weevil 

The Florida Department of Agriculture, Division of Plant Industry (FDACS-DPI) has an excellent pest alert describing the threat to Florida 

If you need your Giant Palm Weevils identified bring them to the Pinellas County Extension Lawn and Garden Help Desk, 12520 Ulmerton Road, Largo.  You can also contact our UF Insect ID lab, headed by Dr. Lyle Buss.  Dr. Lyle Buss also screens samples digitally through our UF Distance Diagnostics system(DDIS) 

Picture is from

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Small Farms and Alternative Enterprises Conference

If you are interested in becoming a small farms or alternative enterprises entrepreneur you can learn all about it at the conference happening on July 27-29, 2012 in Kissimmee, FL.  For more information and to register please see this site.

New Pest Headed Our Way

Maybe you are already seeing this new insect pest in the landscape. It is called the rugose spiraling whitefly.  Heavy infestations are documented from the keys up to Palm Beach and Naples.  To learn more about this pest watch this YouTube video.  Here is a written publication on the rugose spiraling whitefly with a list of insecticides labeled for whitefly control.  Here is a link to a PowerPoint presentation about managing this pest in the landscape.  Please comment if you have seen this new pest in the landscape.

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Tick-borne Diseases Highest in Florida

The Florida Department of Health released its Tick-borne disease Surveillance report for the period ending today.

Several counties reported tick diseases in humans. These diseases included human monocytic ehrlichiosis, human granulocytic anaplasmosis, Rocky Mountain spotted fever and Lyme disease.

To see the full report click here 
For more information on ticks, diseases spread by ticks and control measures see this UF website 

Thursday, June 7, 2012

Hurricane Prep Class

Are you Prepared for Hurricane Season?

Where will you go?  What should you pack?  Is your home secure?  Are You Really Prepared?  Join Pinellas County Extension and other county partners for a FREE Hurricane Preparedness Workshop for local residents at Weedon Island Preserve on Saturday, June 16th at 9am.

Tom Iovino, Pinellas County Emergency Management spokesman, will deliver the Keynote address.  He will present the history of hurricanes in Tampa Bay and discuss the potential threat from a storm this season.  Experts from the University of Florida and Pinellas County Animal Services will deliver sound advice on preparing your home, family, finances, pets, and waterfront in the event of a storm.

Each participant will walk away with a reusable insulated tote bag full of informative resources including a manual LED Flashlight.  Refreshments will be provided. 

Door prizes include a complete set of Tires donated by TiresPlus and an Energy Efficiency kit provided by the Pinellas Energy Efficiency Project, all valued at more than $500!

Registration is limited, reserve your seat by going online to  Weedon Island Preserve Cultural and Natural History Center is located at 1800 Weedon Drive NE, St. Petersburg, FL 33702. For questions, call (727) 453-6522.