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September 15–October 15, 2011

Kaitlyn Gill 2011 Florida Cattlemen’s Association Sweetheart

Covering What’s Growing

www.InTheFieldMagazine.com

September 2011

INTHEFIELD MAGAZINE 1


The best reason to buy a Kubota M126X may not be the one you think. Yes, the M126X has an impressive list of deluxe features that come standard. And Kubota’s reliability and innovation are world-renown. But the best reason to buy an M126X is because you care about a job well-done. And you know this versatile mid-size tractor will deliver premium performance the first time, and every time. When there’s no substitute for a job well-done, there’s the Kubota M126X. • Powerful 4-cylinder, 108 PTO HP Kubota diesel engine • Fuel-efficient Common Rail System (CRS) • 16F x 16R IntelliShift transmission with 8-speed DualRange powershift

w w w. G u l f C o a s t Tr a c t o r. c o m

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INTHEFIELD MAGAZINE

September 2011

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September 2011

INTHEFIELD MAGAZINE 3


From the Editor

September

Sarah Holt

VOL. 7 • ISSUE 11

I was raised in a rural area in northeastern Kentucky. A very rural area I might add. My father was a “city boy” who married a country girl and after a few years of living in town, they moved to the farm. I couldn’t be more thankful. Yes, it was a long drive to even get to the grocery store, especially for a young girl who was prone to motion sickness, something I never outgrew, but growing up on a farm made that a very small sacrifice. We did not have a large farm by any means, a few cattle roamed the hillsides you find so abundant in that neck of the woods, pigs were acquired each year to go along with the beef we put in the freezer, a garden supplied most of our vegetables for the year and our cash crop was tobacco. When not in school, I could be found roaming the hillsides searching for adventure, stopping by the house for lunch or a snack and then right back out the door I would go. Of course it wasn’t all play, but looking back it sure seemed that way. I also spent time at my grandparent’s house, just down the road, “helping” my grandmother with a variety of things like stringing beans, shelling peas and canning. I was so tired at the end of the day, bedtime was never a fight for my mom. I didn’t sleep late, there was fun to be had outside. I enjoyed hearing my grandparents talk about their experiences growing up, both good and bad, family stories are to be cherished. I learned an appreciation for the land. The experiences I garnered growing up on a farm shaped the person I am today. No other experience can come close to the sights and sounds of a farm and nature. I miss those carefree days on the farm. I will cherish those memories for the rest of my life. I wish every child could experience that way of life. It is a lifestyle that should be preserved. Until next month,

Sarah

September 15–October 15, 2011

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Cover Story KAITLYN GILL 2011 Florida Cattlemen’s Association Sweetheart

Covering What’s Growing

www.InTheFieldMagazine.com

7 8 10 12 20 24 28 56 74 88

The LORD make his face shine upon you and be gracious to you. Numbers 6:25

Publisher/Owner Karen Berry

CORRECTION: The feature article in the August issue of In The Field was Southern Style Boer Goats. Their website was incorrectly listed. It is southernstyleboergoats.com.

Office Manager Bob Hughens

Editor-In-Chief Al Berry Senior Managing Editor/Associate Publisher Sarah Holt Editor Patsy Berry

In The Field® Magazine is published monthly and is available through local Hillsborough County businesses, restaurants and other local venues. It is also distributed by U.S. mail to a target market, which includes members of Hillsborough County Farm Bureau and Strawberry Growers Association. Letters, comments and questions can be sent to P.O. Box 5377, Plant City, Florida 335630042 or you are welcome to email them to: info@inthefieldmagazine.com or call 813-759-6909.

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INTHEFIELD MAGAZINE

September 2011

September 2011

INTHEFIELD MAGAZINE

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Kaitlyn Gill: A Truly Sweet Sweetheart Cover Photo by Stephanie Humphrey

Did you know? Advertisers Index Cornfusion: Corn Mazes and Olive Trees

Business UpFront Lancaster’s Hydro Farm

Fishing Hot Spots Captain Woody Gore

Rocking Chair Chatter Al Berry

Grub Station Taste of India

Chrissy Grimmer JFCA President

Fruit & Veggie

Florida’s Muscadine Grapes

Bug

Giant Whip Scorpion Sales Manager Danny Crampton Sales Al Berry Tina Richmond Danny Crampton Kay Mullis Creative Director Amey Celoria Designers Juan Carlos Alvarez Mona Jackson Cover Photo Stephanie Humphrey

Photography Stephanie Humphrey Karen Berry Al Berry Staff Writers Al Berry Sandy Kaster James Frankowiak Kayla Lewis Sean Green Mark Cook Ginny Mink Contributing Writer Woody Gore Les McDowell

Advertisers warrant & represent the descriptions of their products advertised are true in all respects. In The Field® Magazine assumes no responsibility for claims made by their advertisers. All views expressed in all articles are those of the authors and not necessarily those of Berry Publications, Inc. Any use or duplication of material used in In The Field® magazine is prohibited without written consent from Berry Publications, Inc. Published by Berry Publications, Inc.

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September 2011

INTHEFIELD MAGAZINE 5


100 South Mulrennan Road • Valrico, FL 33594 Phone (813) 685-9121

n A 9 e6 th

Th

bership Meeting & m e M l Ste n ua

ak D i nn er

When: Thursday, September 29, 2011 Dinner at 6pm, Membership Meeting at 7pm Where: John R. Trinkle Building (Plant City HCC Campus) Directions: I-4 exit 22 South, 1 light turn left, 3 building on the left st

rd

Who: Each Farm Bureau member family is entitled to two free dinners. Additional dinners may be purchased for $5.00. Children under 12 receive a free hot dog dinner. Featuring: • The Youth Speech Contest Winner • 2011-2013 Board Member Election • Door Prizes & Lots of Fellowship

HILLSBOROUGH COUNTY FARM BUREAU 100 S. Mulrennan Rd. Valrico, FL 33594

Office Hours: Monday-Friday 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.

The chicken is one of the few things that man eats before it’s born and after it’s dead.

More people study English in China than speak it in the United States.

John Quincy Adams, sixth president of the United States, loved to skinny dip in the Potomac River.

The worst air polluter in the entire state of Washington is Mount St. Helens.

90% of Canada’s 31,000,000 plus citizens live within 100 miles of the U.S. border.

Costco is the largest wine retailer in the United States. Annual wine sales are about $700 million.

A Georgia company will mix your loved one’s ashes with cement and drop it into the ocean to form an artificial reef.

Over 1.5 million Americans are charged with drunk driving each year.

A private elementary school in Alexandria, Virginia, accidentally served margaritas to its school children, thinking it was limeade.

About 20% of gift cards are never redeemed at the full value of the card.

La Paz, Bolivia is the world’s most fireproof city. At 12,000 feet above sea level, the amount of oxygen in the air barely supports a flame.

In 2004, Virgin Atlantic Airlines introduced a double bed for first class passengers who fly together.

A chef’s hat is shaped the way it is for a reason: its shape allows air to circulate around the scalp, keeping the head cool in a hot kitchen.

Nearly one third of New York City public school teachers send their own children to private schools.

®

LOOK WHO’S READING

Ben Rothfeld

of Windemere, FL

Bring this invitation with you for a special door prize drawing!

Danny Aprile .............................. President Bill Burnette ....................... Vice President Jemy Hinton ................................Treasurer George Coleman....................... Secretary Glenn Harrell ...............Member at Large

DIRECTORS FOR 2010-2011 Amanda Collins, Roy Davis, David Drawdy, Jim Dyer, Alvin Futch, Stefan Katzaras, Joe Keel, Greg Lehman, Kenneth Parker, Jake Raburn, Marty Tanner, James Tew, Patrick Thomas, Michelle Williamson, Ray Wood

Judi Whitson, Executive Director 813.685.9121

FARM BUREAU INSURANCE SPECIAL AGENTS Valrico Office 813.685.5673

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Plant City Office 813.752.5577

Tampa Office 813.933.5440

1046 W. Busch Blvd., Ste. 100, Tampa, FL 33612 Greg Harrell, Jeff Harper, Carter Metts

AGENCY MANAGER Tommy Hale

BOARD OF DIRECTORS Danny Aprile, Vice-President; Jemy Hinton, Treasurer; George Coleman, Secretary; Glenn Harrell, Member-at-large; Bill Burnette, Jake Raburn, Patrick Thomas, Amanda Collins, Roy Davis, David Drawdy, Jim Dyer, Alvin Futch, Stefan Katzaras, Greg Lehman, Carl Little, Lance Ham, Michelle Williamson and John Stickles. Judi Whitson, Executive Director

September 2011

OFFICERS AND EXECUTIVE COMMITTEE

1302 S. Collins St., Plant City, FL 33563 Jeff Sumner, Bill Williams

Please bring canned food for the YF&R Harvest for All campaign.

INTHEFIELD MAGAZINE

Member Services 813.685.9121

100 S. Mulrennan Rd. Valrico, FL 33594 Tommy Hale, CLU, ChFC, CASL, CPCU Agency Mgr. Julie Carlson, John McGuire

RSVP: 813-685-9121 or hcfb@tampabay.rr.com by September 23. Leave your name, number of dinners (children & adult) and telephone number.

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Insurance Services 813.685.5673

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September 2011

INTHEFIELD MAGAZINE 7


Index of

Advertisers

Ag Technologies ................. 13 Agro-Culture Liquid Fertilizers ........................... 79 Antioch Feed & Farm Supply................................ 33 Aquarius Water Refining .... 64 Astin Strawberry Exchange.92 Bartow Chevrolet .................3 Berry Blue Farm & Nursery.89 Bill’s Transmissions ............ 67 Bingham Portables ............. 89 Brandon Auto Services ....... 85 Broke & Poor ..................... 81 Byrd & Barnhill, P.L. .......... 83 Carpet Diem ...................... 57 CF Industries ..................... 39 Choo Choo’s Lawn Equipment ......................... 19 Chuck’s Tire & Auto .......... 63 Cowboys Western World .... 17 Crescent Jewelers ............... 73 Dad’s Towing ..................... 59 Dairy Queen ...................... 55 Discount Metal Mart ......... 65 Driscoll’s Berries ................ 69 Dusty’s Camper World ....... 85 Dyson Spare Parts .............. 87 Eco Water Systems ...............8 Elite Home Fitness ............. 79 F.C. Mullis Plumbing ......... 35 Farm Bureau Insurance ...... 37 Farm Bur. Ins./Jeff Sumner.. 71 Farm Credit ....................... 55 Felton’s Market .................. 71 Florida Golden Honey ....... 92 FL Ranch Rodeo Finals....... 47 Florida Strawberry Growers Association ..........................9 Forbes Road Produce .......... 11 Fred’s Market .......................8 Gator Ford ......................... 81 Gerald Keene Plumbing ...... 45 Grove Equipment Svc. ...67, 73 Gulf Coast Tractor & Equipment .......................2 Handy Can Portable Restrooms .......................... 83 Harold’s Feed & Pet Supply .......................... 14-15 Harrell’s Nursery ............... 89 Haught Funeral Home ....... 27 Helena Chemical ............... 69 Hillsboro State Bank .......... 85

Hillsborough County FB ......7 Hope Christian Academy ... 87 Huff Muffler ...................... 91 I-4 Power Equipment ............5 Johnson’s Barbeque ............ 83 Jon & Rosie’s Tree Farm ..... 92 Keel & Curley Winery ........ 95 Kennco Mfg. ...................... 89 KeyPlex Nutritionals .......... 31 L.I.T. Security Cages .......... 94 Lancaster Farms ................. 64 Lands Feed & Farm Supply....................... 77 Lewis Insulation Technologies ...................... 94 Loetscher Auto Parts........... 87 Malissa Crawford, Coldwell Banker ............................... 57 Mark Smith Excavating ...... 30 Mid-State Tractor Parts ...... 92 Mosaic .............................. 54 Norm Sapp Delivery Svcs.... 91 Plant City Tire & Auto ...... 89 Platinum Bank ................... 61 Red Rose Inn & Suites ... 48-49 Rhizogen ........................... 65 Roadrunner Veterinary Clinic ................................. 96 Sanchez Dermatology ........ 92 Savich & Lee Wholesale ..... 75 Seedway ............................. 92 Shell’s Feed & Garden Supply ................... 21 Southside Farm & Pet Supply .......................... 29 Southwestern Produce ........ 23 Sparkman Chevrolet ............3 Stingray Chevrolet ............. 41 The Hay Depot .................. 87 Timberlane Pet Hospital & Resort ................................ 85 Trinkle, Redman, Swanson, Cotón, Davis & Smith ........ 61 Uncommon USA ................ 54 Walden Lake Car Wash ...... 77 Wells Memorial ................. 63 Westcoast Enterprises ......... 91 Wetzel’s Farrier Service ....... 91 Willie’s Seafood................... 83 Winfield Solutions .........59, 75 Wish Farms ........................ 25 Zaxby’s ............................. 43

The Florida Strawberry Growers Association’s 29th Agritech Trade Show and Educational Seminar was a huge success this year. It was two days of interacting with industry vendors and fellow strawberry and vegetable growers filled with information and new products to keep the growers in the race. We sold out exhibitor space and over 300 growers and industry friends attended each day. The theme this year was NASCAR. We even had a member bring in a real racecar! With a full agenda, growers were updated on new developments in nutrient management, irrigation system management, disease controls, and new strawberry variety and breeding research. The speakers included professors from the University of Florida Gulf Coast Research & Education Center, located in Balm, Florida.

Thank you to all who volunteered to make this, our 29th Agritech, a success!!

YOU TOO CAN BE A WINNER HEY READERS, hidden somewhere in the magazine is a No Farmers, No Food logo. Hunt for the logo and once you find the hidden logo you will be eligible for a drawing to win a FREE InTheField® T-Shirt. Send us your business card or an index card with your name and telephone number, the page on which you found the logo and where on that page you located the logo to:

Florida Strawberry Growers Association For more information call our office at

InTheField® Magazine P.O. Box 5377, Plant City, FL 33563-0042 All Entries must be received by October 3, 2011. Winner will be notified by phone. You Too Can Be A Winner - Enter Now! 8

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September 2011

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813.752.6822

www.flstrawberry.com www.InTheFieldMagazine.com

September 2011

INTHEFIELD MAGAZINE 9


Cornfusion Corn Mazes & Olive Trees by Ginny Mink Hold on to your magazine ladies and gentleman, because what’s about to be revealed will blow you away! Lakeland is gearing up to experience one of the coolest things on land, something most of us have only seen in movies but secretly always wished we could participate in. Are you ready? Ted and Donna Smith of Green Leaf Sod Farms are hosting a corn maze this October! Yes, a corn maze in our very own Central Florida location. Mazes are a unique part of human history. People have long been enthralled by things that make them go, “hmmm.” In fact, the first recorded maze in history was the Egyptian Labyrinth as reported by Herodotus, a Greek traveler and writer, in the 5th century, BC! It was built by pharaoh Amenemhet in the 19th century, BC (www.amazingart.com/maze-faqs/ancient-mazes. html). While that maze was made of stone the first hedge maze appeared during the 13th century in Belgium. Apparently there are two forms of mazes, unicursal and multicursal. Unicursal mazes don’t have any dead ends and so they really aren’t much of a puzzle for those walking in them. Multicursal mazes have blind alleys and branches that make finding the end quite a challenge. This information and tons more on the history of mazes can be found on www.unmuseum.org/maze. htm. By the way, the Smiths’ maze would be labeled multicursal. “A corn maze or maize maze is a maze cut out of a corn field. They have become popular tourist attractions in North America, and a way for farmers to create tourist income. Many are based on artistic designs such as characters from movies.

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Corn mazes actually began as formal garden mazes developed throughout Europe for the wealthiest castles and palaces to amuse kings and princesses. The largest corn maze in the world is located in Dixon, California, and is 45 acres in area as of 2010,” (http://www.wikipedia.org/wiki/Corn_maze). The Smiths’ corn maze spans eight acres and is very intricately designed. An aerial view would show two cows (with the Smiths’ brand on each hip), a WPCV 97 Country logo and a commemorative Polk County 150 year anniversary emblem. If you are anxious to see the aerial pictures for yourself just go

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to www.themaize.com and click on the visit a maze tab. The Maize is actually the company the Smiths are working with on their corn maze and there’s lots of neat info on the website. For instance, they are the world’s largest cornfield maze company and have a Guinness Record! The Smiths’ maze will be open every weekend in October, Friday 2-8 pm, Saturday 9 am to 8 pm and Sunday 12-8 pm. However, they are willing to set up weekday visitations for special interest groups and schools. So, if you’ve got a club or you can set up a “field trip” at a school, contact Donna. There is a cost and that’s $10 for adults, $8 for kids 5-10; four and under are free. As if the maze weren’t reason enough to visit the Smiths’ amazing property, it gets better. There will be a 60 x 40 bounce pillow. Essentially, this is a giant inflated trampoline that will be placed in the ground. Certainly the kids will enjoy it, but the Smiths’ would probably be willing to bet, adults will be gleefully jumping away as well. For the wee ones they’re creating a little mini maze out of hay bails, it will be “two squares high so they can see over and not get scared,” Ted explains. But wait, there’s more! They’ll have an air powered “corn cannon designed to shoot corn cobs, water bottles and tennis balls.” It has three different barrels to accommodate the various forms of ammo and there will be targets at different ranges. Similar to the bounce pillow, the Smiths’ understand that grown-ups will want to participate in this unique shooting experience, so the furthest targets are for them. Set your sights on that! We’re still not done though, there’s a really cool duck race for the kiddies in which little rubber duckies will traverse PVC pipe. Here’s the catch, the ducks will only go as fast as the kids pump because

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the water flowing through the pipes is managed by old style red pitcher pumps. No doubt you’re thinking, “Wow, that’s mad cool! Can it get any better?” Well, yes, it can. They’ve built what they’re calling a “tractor train” for the kids that will pull them around the outskirts of the big corn maze. No worries, Mom and Dad, they’ve thought of everything, they installed seatbelts in each “train car.” Also, they are going to have a corn box, which is basically a sandbox, but it’s filled with corn kernels for the little ones to dig in and you don’t even have to bring your own pails and shovels! Then there’s the pumpkin patch and the sunflower patch… So, there’s all that fun and then there’s more!! Fred’s Southern Market will be doing all the catering via their concession stand. Donna adds, “We got to okay the menu so there’s nothing outrageously priced, there’s something in everyone’s price range.” There will also be booths selling homemade goodies and crafts. By the way, if you’re interested in setting up a booth for the event, please contact Donna at 863 859 9714. Continued on page 80

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Business UpFront Faith and Tangible Fruitfulness: Lancaster’s Hydro Farm

The Southeast’s Leading Precision Ag Company

by Ginny Mink

PLA NT

ING NUTRIEN MANAGEMETN T

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substituted if not in season.” If you’re interested in learning more about it and hopefully participating in this awesome opportunity to support the co-ops and farms in the area, you should definitely visit the Lancaster’s website: www.lancasterfarm.net or contact Angela by phone at (813) 482 2008. As if fresh fruits and vegetables arriving at your door each week wasn’t good enough, the Lancaster’s have partnered with enough other farmers and homemakers to provide an additional slew of tasty, healthy foods for you. The fact of the matter is, you can utilize their website to attain fresh baked goods, Amish made cheese, butter, preserves and dressing as well as raw honey, goat milk and goat cheese, organic eggs, pickled beets, and homemade whole grain organic granola. Do not hesitate to peruse it. “People need to realize how important farming is and if we don’t support it, it’s gonna be gone. I tell you this has been a struggle, even the weather isn’t cooperating. It’s a dying thing, a lot of people are giving up and selling out. I’m all about supporting local farmers ‘cause it’s kinda hard to compete with the WalMart’s and Sweetbay’s. If everything hits rock bottom one thing’s for certain, we will not starve,” says Angela. With God behind them they have trudged on through all kinds of adversity, but Angela chooses to give credit where it’s due, so she adds, “Our children have helped so much and the people that work for us are Christians, too, and it’s just been amazing.” No doubt this has been the experience of a lifetime for them and Angela’s words definitely attest to that. “We have met some wonderful people along this journey and have been enriched. God has blessed us in spite of ourselves and we are thankful. We are still learning and growing, but most of all still enjoying life and having fun! We hope to be of service to you and your family soon!” Obviously since this was a faith led venture, it’s important to note that their farm is also somewhat of a ministry. They provide free fruits and vegetables to three local pastors and their families. When a Produce Club member has financial or relational troubles or just overall calamity, Angela and Mike have been known to provide for them free of charge as well. Talk about people walking the walk, not to mention being wholly and tangibly fruitful! Please visit their website and help support this inspired venture.

W M ATER A N AG E M E N T

People casually throw around the concept of taking a “leap of faith.” Typically they use this adage for things that really don’t apply. For instance, a woman might ask her friend, “Do you like my new hair color?” And upon receiving the answer therein she’ll add, “Well, it was definitely a leap of faith!” Come on now, that is really not definitive of what an actual leap of faith looks like. Angela Lancaster of Lancaster’s Hydro Farm can attest to that. According to Angela, she and Mike have been married for 31 years and have “three wonderful children, 28, 26 and 21, and we just got our first grandchild, he’s 9 months old.” Certainly marriage and the bearing of children is a leap of faith in and of itself, yet, this is not what we are talking about here. We’re talking about feeling the leading of the Heavenly Father and then walking out of your lucrative careers to start a hydroponics farm. Yep, that’s what they did! They started preparing to utilize vertical hydroponics growing methodology in November of 2006. Neither of them had previous farming experience but both felt strongly about participating in and supporting local agriculture. Therefore they planted 50 different varieties of vegetables in December of that year. “We planted things like kale and Swiss chard, stuff we’d never even heard of. It was the winter and we didn’t know what would happen, but God blessed us and every one of our plants grew!” So, with their new farm in motion, they sought out methods to reach out to the community they so loved. Their goal was to recognize the doors the Father opened for them and then to walk right through. “I feel really strongly about supporting families and I wanted to do something that would encourage them to sit down and eat dinner together,” Angela explained. Thusly they arrived at the idea for the Produce Club. “The Produce Club allows us to bring fresh from the farm fruits and vegetables to your door in baskets weekly or biweekly. You just leave the basket outside your door on the day of the next delivery so that we can reuse them,” said Angela. There are a number of basket options to choose from, some of which include: vegetable baskets, fruit baskets, combo baskets, and something they call a staples basket. “This basket contains: lettuce, (3) tomatoes, broccoli, your choice of celery or baby spinach, (2) sweet onions, (2 lbs) sweet potatoes, your choice of red or white potatoes, (1 lb) baby carrots. Some items can be

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INTHEFIELD MAGAZINE 13

Authorized Ag Dealer


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INTHEFIELD MAGAZINE 15


CF Industries’ Partnerships Bode Well for Partners and the Environment by Jim Frankowiak Conserving water resources is nothing new at CF Industries. In fact, over the last 15 years CF has forged partnerships with its Florida neighbors, the cities of Plant City, Tampa and Wauchula. In each instance, these public/private initiatives have involved treated or reclaimed water from each municipality’s wastewater treatment facilities, leading to benefits for the company, these cities and the environment. The CF/Plant City relationship can be traced back to a recommendation from the Hillsborough River’s Greenways Task Force, now known as the Hillsborough River Watershed Alliance, an entity formed to develop and implement regional plans that will protect environmental and ecological assets within the upper Hillsborough River Basin. CF’s Plant City Phosphate Complex is located in this basin. The task force recommended that the company consider using Plant City’s wastewater, keeping it out of Lake Thonotosassa. This undertaking required construction of a pipeline from the Plant City Wastewater Treatment Plant to the CF Phosphate Complex where it would be used for a variety of process-related activities in the manufacture of fertilizer. The 10-mile long pipeline is 24-inches in diameter and was partially funded by a grant from the Southwest Florida Water Management District. CF was responsible for construction costs associated with the pipeline connecting Plant City and the plant’s operations. Construction of the pipeline began in 1996 and was completed in early 1997. “The Water Reclamation Facility has operated continuously since 1997,” said Plant City Utilities Director Frank Coughenour. “Upgrades placed in service in 2008 improved operational

flexibility and reliability and the system has remained in service continuously since 2008. “Plant City is very pleased to provide reclaimed water to CF Industries, and we believe that the relationship has been mutually beneficial. The City sees reclaimed water use as an integral component in the growth and sustainability of our water and wastewater utilities,” said Coughenour. “Recent Water Reclamation Facility improvements and reclaimed water pipeline extensions will provide reliable reclaimed water service to CF and other industrial, agricultural and residential irrigation customers for many years into the future.” Currently CF Industries Plant City Phosphate Complex uses approximately 2.2 million gallons of reclaimed water each day. At about the same time that plans were underway for the reclaimed pipeline, CF re-evaluated its overall use of existing water sources with an eye toward reducing consumption of groundwater. “Our overall goal was the best use of existing water resources,” said Ron Brunk, Superintendent Environmental Affairs. “This goal was very comprehensive and covered simple processes such as fixing leaking or open valves to more complex measures including ranking water quality use throughout the complex.” Brunk said the highest quality water at the complex is used to produce steam for generating electric power. Chief Environmental Services, Mike Messina, noted that the complex generates nearly 78 percent of the power needed for its operations. “Recycled process water is used for grinding phosphate ore for processing and other process-related activities,” said Brunk.

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September 2011

INTHEFIELD MAGAZINE 17


A Triple Win

The combination of reclaimed wastewater from Plant City plus the evaluation of water use and institution of new procedures “has enabled us to reduce groundwater use by 50 percent,” said Brunk. “That’s a triple win. Plant City win, CF wins and the environment wins through a marked reduction in groundwater use.” In Hardee County, where CF Industries has a Florida phosphate mining operation, there are actually two stories about water conservation. One is similar to the Plant City program, and another is set to begin in the final quarter of this year. CF began mining in Hardee County in 1978. “From the beginning, we have worked to pioneer innovative and environmentally beneficial techniques and operating practices,” said David Gossett, Manager, Technical Services. “Some of these include using process water rather than well water in the phosphate flotation process, recycling more than 95 percent of process water, more rapid reclamation by using sand/clay mix disposal practices and innovative stream reclamation techniques.” “Water is probably the most valuable commodity needed for future development in Hardee County,” said Gossett. “To that end, CF has been working with the City of Wauchula and Hardee County to secure the water future of the area.” In 2001 CF entered into a 20-year agreement with the City of Wauchula to accept and use treated domestic wastewater of up to 3.5 million gallons per day, eliminating the city’s discharge requirements and reducing CF’s need for precious groundwater. “That agreement provides an important outlet for sending CF up to 3.5 million gallons per day of this nutrient rich water which would otherwise pose a difficult and costly disposal problem for the City of Wauchula,” said Gossett. “By doing this, CF reduces the quantity of groundwater used in our operations and after treatment provides improved quality of the area surface waters. In the longer term, this water could provide a source for the Aquifer Recharge and Recovery Project (ARRP).” The ARRP is schedule to begin operation in the fourth quarter of this year. Phosphate mining is dependent on having a significant amount of water to conduct mining and mineral processing operations. CF pioneered the use of recycled water at the Hardee Complex rather than well water in the phosphate flotation process more than 30 years ago, thereby reducing the use of groundwater in its operations. “Of the approximately 150,000 gallons per minute needed for operating the facility, more than 95 percent is recycled process and captured storm water. The balance is made up of groundwater during periods of low rainfall. CF now has further reduced its groundwater consumption through the use of treated domestic wastewater from the City of Wauchula,” said Gossett. Another triple win, benefiting the municipality, company and environment. The ARRP project traces its beginnings to 2003 when CF, working with Hardee County, Florida Institute of Phosphate Research (FIPR) and Peter Schreuder, an environmental innovator, developed the idea for a water conservation project. Slated to begin in the last quarter of this year, the project will produce two to four million gallons per day of water suitable for drinking. “This water eventually (after two years of rigorous testing) is planned for injection into the Florida Aquifer providing relief for the stressed drinking water supply in the area,” said Gossett. The ARRP utilized land previously mined for phosphate. It was returned to a storage site for sand and clay generated by mining and processing operations, followed by reclamation. The area

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underwent consolidation and compaction and has been reconfigured to serve as a reservoir and treatment wetlands. The reservoir is used to capture and store excess stormwater and process water that would otherwise be released. The treatment wetlands have been created using native soil and plants to remove nutrients and purify the water. The water then will be pumped to a filter basin constructed of sand where it will be filtered and purified further. “The primary benefit of the ARRP project is the ability to provide two to four million gallons per day of clean water for injection into the Florida Aquifer an/or other beneficial use,” said Gossett. “This could relieve some of the stress to the aquifer and potentially provide clean water for future economic development or environmental benefit in Hardee County.” In the short term, mining operations can provide the water source for the ARRP, in the longer term, the City of Wauchula wastewater and potentially other wastewater sources may provide the water supply for the ARRP. Another water innovation story comes from CF Industries Tampa Terminal and Warehouse, which faced a challenge with regard to the unloading of anhydrous ammonia from its storage tank transfer into railroad cars and trucks. The cold ammonia is used by CF at its Plant City complex and a number of other industrial users in Florida. “When stored on ships or at our port facility, the ammonia is kept at minus 28-degrees Fahrenheit,” said Maintenance Superintendent Bill Yates. “However, when loading a truck or railcar from our tanks, the temperature of the ammonia must be elevated to above freezing.” To accomplish this, CF devised a unique way to capture heat using treated sewage effluent. The CF Tampa Terminal and Warehouse borders the City of Tampa’s Howard F. Curren Advanced Wastewater Treatment Plant. That plant daily discharges thousands of gallons of treated wastewater or effluent into Tampa Bay. In 1997, CF’s then Terminal Manager Nick Katzaras entered into discussions with wastewater treatment plant officials about the potential for using the plant’s effluent to cool the ammonia lines at CF during unloading and loading. The result was the construction of a 16-inch underground line from the wastewater facility to CF. The link was complete and operation of the connecting pipeline began in late 1998. “It has been a good partnership,” said wastewater plant operations specialist Eddie Driver. “We are pleased to have been able to help. It was the right thing to do.” The pipeline link is currently delivering approximately 3,000 gallons per minute. “We send CF 90-degree water,” said Driver. “The same water is returned to us about 20-degrees cooler and that temperature reduction helps to decrease overall water temperature which is beneficial to our internal operations.” The link to Tampa’s wastewater facility provides CF a constant flow of warm water. This water is used to heat ammonia through a heat exchanger for loading. “We no longer have to use boilers and solar ponds to warm water, which represents an energy saving and a reduction in emissions,” said John Joyner, superintendent of operations at the CF Port of Tampa facility. All of these projects emphasize the importance of sound water management practices. Each benefits the partners and the environment. Three Triple Wins!

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September 2011

INTHEFIELD MAGAZINE 19


“Family Owned & Operated Since 1961” TAMPA BAY’S FISHING REPORT

Feed and Garden Supply, Inc. • Diamond Pet Food Distributor Wholesale dealer and breeder pricing available • Organic vegetable seeds • Earthboxes • Blueberry Fertilizer • Mills Magic Rose Mix • Rhizogen 2-4-2 Base * poultry manure fertilizer Available • Full line of garden supplies (+ everything they

Keep Them Fresh

Baby Chicks & Bunnies

by Captain Woody Gore

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September 2011

we must use our share with care. That share must not only be controlled and managed by the obvious measures now in place, such as catch limits, and the like, but also by ensuring that the fish we choose to take to the table are in prime eating condition. If you were buying fish at the local fish market, the rules for checking the condition of the fish are simple. The same rules should apply to fish coming to the cleaning table after a day on the water in your boat. • Are the eyes clear and bright? Cloudy or dull eyes are signs are the fish has not been treated right after it was caught. • Is the flesh solid and ‘bouncy’ to the touch? When pressed and released does the flesh bounce back into shape? Soft flabby flesh means it is bruised, or beginning to decompose, or both. • Is the fish slimy? Excessive slime is a sure sign the fish has been allowed to overheat and is beginning to decompose. • Does the fish stink? A strong, putrid, fishy smell means the fish is decomposing. Fresh fish in good condition have a clean fishy smell, not unpleasant, or strong. There is no reason we cannot produce fish in prime condition when we start preparing them for the table. The simple facts are that to produce table fish in prime condition we simply follow four easy steps. • First Step - fill an insulated cooler with ice, lots of ice. • Second Step - as fish come over the side, kill them right away, preferably with a solid whack over the eyes with a fish club. Then place them in the cooler and cover with ice. • Second Step (Option) - However, If you have a freshwater circulated water livewell place the fish in the livewell and keep them alive as long as possible.

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There is nothing difficult about keeping fish in first class condition from the time they are caught until the time they are cooked and what a difference it makes to the taste. Recreational or sport fishing anglers are always ready to jump up and down about any attempts to reduce their right to catch a mess of fresh fish for dinner. Then how come so many of those same anglers, who jump on their soap boxes and vociferously voice their opinion about this right, so often bring home fish that are often an inedible travesty of the original delight they caught? The summer months seem to be the worse simply because the heat has such a devastating effect on any catch that is left unattended. Anglers often forget and take little precaution to protect the freshness of the fish they plan on eating. They toss them into a fish box or un-iced cooler where the fish slowly struggles as it drowns in the air. Then as more fish are caught they are thrown on top of the already dead and dying fish. By the time the anglers get to shore, sometimes five to eight hours later, they have a spoiled mess on their hands that certainly should not be eaten. Simply put, the fish have literally cooked in their own blood and slime. Now there is nothing left to do but discard the rotting carcasses. If we’re not going to do it right we shouldn’t be doing it at all. Many anglers would be better advised to fish on an exclusively catch-and-release basis only. If they want to have some fish for dinner they could stop by the local market and buy some on the way home. The fish in the market would most likely be in much better condition than the amateur’s catch. The fact is, if we have any right to demand a stake in the way our fishery is managed and that a significant piece of that fishery is reserved to ensure that recreational and fishing anglers can indeed continue to catch fish for dinner, then it is also true that

w w w. s h e l l s fe e d. co m

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INTHEFIELD MAGAZINE 21


Third step - Add some water to the insulated cooler along with the ice and drop the dead fish into this slurry as they are caught or die. Keep adding ice as needed. • Fourth step - Whenever time permits, remove the stomach contents and drop the fish back into the slurry. Following these simple steps has very real advantages. Because the flesh is chilled down, when the time comes to prepare the fish the job is much easier. The fish will not be slimy, which means cleaning is easier, more efficient and filleting is especially a breeze. Many people, who have trouble filleting fish, find the difficulty comes from slimy soft flesh making it hard to make a clean full cut. It’s much easier when the flesh has some consistency and firmness. Preparing fish for the table also becomes more pleasant when there is little or no odor. Cooking fish should be an appetizing smell. I know many people who do not like eating fish because of bad past experiences. The cooking odor of foul-smelling fish is an integral part of taste, because our brain usually relates a bad smell to a bad taste. But by far and away the biggest bonus will be in the taste. There is little to compare with the taste of fresh fish that has been well cared for since capture, especially fish that we have caught ourselves. For me that is one of the true joys of fishing. Despite the very real problems in our saltwater fisheries, in comparison with most other places in the world ours is a dream fishery. The ability to take to the sea with a realistic anticipation of hooking into a nice catch of fish is one of the things that make our area unique. To mistreat the fish we choose to keep is an abuse of this right and privilege.

Tampa Bay Fishing Report

August was a scorcher with humidity in the 90s, but we’re still catching fish. While it’s still important to pick the right tide days for the most part, even if you miss the bites still been fairly consistent. Although we’re not catching the numbers we might like, we are still catching. Warm summer waters make fish lethargic for most of the day, but when fishing at night they seem to become a little more active. Many summer anglers find nighttime fishing enjoyable and, provided the mosquitoes don’t carry you off, the fishing is relatively productive. Bait in the Bay, if you can find it, is getting small, but deeper grass flats and heavy chumming can still bring in some decent fishable sardines. However, large greenbacks are not always the answer to inshore production. It’s called match the hatch and because they will be eating the smaller baits it’s always advisable that you fish with them. Remember, you don’t need to black out the live well, you only need enough for fishing. With water temperatures in the high 80s to low 90s the trick is keeping your bait alive. Therefore you must understand that less bait consumes less oxygen and for this reason ‘less is more’. Here’s a tip: buy an inexpensive swimming pool thermometer to keep in your livewell. Now freeze several bottles of water and keep them in your cooler. When your livewell temperatures soar into the 90s add a bottle of frozen water to the livewell. Fresh water and bait do not mix, so never empty the contents into the livewell, just place the entire bottle into the livewell. If you’re looking for some lively mackerel action, threadfins

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are no problem and throwing a ten foot, ¾ to 1 inch net should get all you need. You’ll find large schools all over the Bay in deeper water. Mackerel also take small silver spoons fished under and behind a popping cork. I say behind because if you need to make some noise with the cork make sure to have sufficient leader behind the popper (at least 36 inches). Seaguar 50 to 60 pound works for me except when a small black tip shark decides to strike. If the sharks become a problem go to 85 pound Seaguar and long shank inexpensive hook. Mackerel have plenty of teeth capable of inflicting a nasty bite so bending down the barb on your hooks makes de-hooking much easier. Another tip about handling sharks, just because they are not six feet long, don’t think the smaller ones are a cakewalk. Small sharks can be extremely dangerous. Despite their size they are strong and very flexible. Grabbing one by the tail could result in a nasty bite if you’re not careful. If you must handle them grab it firmly behind the head while controlling the tail with your other hand. Snook-Redfish-Trout Fishing should begin returning to normal as the temperatures ease up somewhat. It’s still going to be hot, but perhaps the humidity will lighten some. Night fishing will produce good catches of Snook, Redfish and Trout around structures, especially lighted docks. Work any topwater lures through the light line and hang on. Live shrimp and greenbacks free-lined or under a popping cork always work when fishing around the mangroves and in sandy potholes on the grass flats. Cobia fishing should continue as they travel around the flats with large rays, sharks or manatees. Toss your bait or lure somewhere near the fish and it’s usually fish on. They’re not picky about what they eat, just get it close and make it move. They also frequent channel markers and channel buoys, especially those holding schools of greenbacks or threadfins. Hang a chum block over the side and if they’re close they’ll come. Tarpon anglers will find them moving into Tampa Bay and around the bridges. Bridge tarpon are always fun and threadfins, crabs and larger white baits tossed directly into their path should do the trick. Pick a bridge with a good light-line at night and sight cast them. Mackerel offer some great light tackle action. Tampa Bay’s full of threadfins and big mackerel. Just drift or anchor around the bait, toss out a white bait or threadfin, shinny spoon or gotcha lure and hang on. Snapper catches are being reported around almost any structure, especially around the full moon. Pick any artificial reef, rock pile, pilings or marker, find some small greenbacks or shrimp, a # 1 hook, 20 pound Seaguar fluorocarbon leader, ¼ ounce egg sinker or larger (depending on the current) make a knocker rig and have fun. Limit catches reported around the bay with some weighing three to six pounds but most average around one to two pounds.

“Give Me a Call & Let’s Go Fishing” Captain Woody Gore is the area’s top outdoor fishing guide. Guiding and fishing the Tampa, Clearwater, St. Petersburg, Tarpon Springs, Bradenton, and Sarasota areas for over fifty years; he offers world class fishing adventures and a lifetime of memories. Single or Multi-boat Group Charters are all the same. With years of organizational experience and access to the areas most experienced captains, Woody can arrange and coordinate any outing or tournament. Just tell him what you need and it’s done. Visit his website at: WWW.CAPTAINWOODYGORE. COM, send an email to wgore@ix.netcom.com or give him a call at 813-477-3814. www.InTheFieldMagazine.com

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Cut Okra ............................. $12 Breaded Okra ..................... $12 Whole Okra......................... $12 Sliced Yellow Squash .......... $12 Sliced Zucchini .................... $12 Brussel Sprouts ................... $12 Chopped Broccoli 5# ............$ 5 Baby Carrots ....................... $12 Broccoli ............................... $13 Cauliflower ......................... $13 Mixed Vegetables ............... $13 Soup Blend.......................... $13 Blueberries 5# .................... $15 Blackberries 5#................... $15 Raspberries 5# ................... $15 Cranberries 5# ................... $15 Mango Chunks 5# .............. $15 Pineapple Chunks 5# ......... $15 Dark Sweet Cherries 5#...... $15 Peaches ............................... $15 Green Jumbo Peanuts......... $15

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September 2011

INTHEFIELD MAGAZINE 23


s errie. b f o a etern Florid k r a i r m es emieegetabl r p A v

and

Come Grow With Us 100 Stearn Ave. Plant City, FL 33563 Tel: 813.752.5111 www.wishfarms.com Well it’s back-to-school time, and even in this bad economy all the clothing stores are offering discounts to fight for their share of the money spent by parents on their kids clothing and other accessories. Maxine has had an eye on the bad economy, and reports that it is so bad, if the bank returns your check marked “Insufficient Funds” you need to call and ask if they meant yours or theirs. She said she got a pre-declined credit card in the mail, too. I remember when I was going to grammar school some of the kids went bare-footed. I had one pair of tennis shoes from Black’s Department store that mother would wash everyother-day ‘cause I would put a hurt’n on them playing football after school in the sand lot. Much emphasis in school today is put on writing and politics they tell me. I read an essay from a sixth grader the other day that shows the progress of not leaving anybody behind. “As you know the colonists won the War and no longer had to pay for taxis. Delegates from the original 13 states formed the Contented Congress. Thomas Jefferson, a Virgin, and Benjamin Franklin, were two singers of

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the Declaration of Independence. Franklin had gone to Boston carrying all his clothes in his pocket and a loaf of bread under each arm. He invented electricity by rubbing cats backwards and declared ‘a horse divided against itself cannot stand.’ Franklin died in 1790 and is still dead. George Washington married Martha Curtis and in due time became the Father of our Country. Then the Constitution of the United States was adopted to secure domestic hostility. Under the Constitution the people enjoy the right to keep bare arms.” I ran across these excerpts from student’s science exam in Alabama. “There are three kinds of blood vessels: arteries, vanes and caterpillars. The process of turning steam back into water again is called conversation. The Earth makes a resolution every 24 hours. Clouds are highflying fogs. A blizzard is when it snows sideways. The first commandment was when Eve told Adam to eat the apple.” In my opinion teachers have their job cut out for them these days. They have so much competition from X-Boxes, TV, cell phones, and computer games. I wonder what the next 30 years of electronics will bring. I read an article comparing the 60s to today at school. The scenario: Fred goes rabbit hunting before school, pulls into the high

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school parking lot with his shotgun in his gun rack. Back in 1962 the principal comes out to look at Fred’s shotgun. The principal then goes to his car and gets his shotgun to show Fred. Today the school goes into lockdown and the FBI is called. Fred is hauled off to jail and never sees his truck or gun again. Counselors are then called in for traumatized students and teachers. Then there’s the story of a second grader that came home from school and said to her mother, “Mom, guess what? We learned how to make babies today.” Mom was startled, and tried to keep her composure. “That’s interesting,” she said, “how do you make babies?” “It’s easy, Mom,” she replied. “You just change ‘y’ to ‘i’ and add ‘es’.” We need to give children credit as they have logic! For instance a teacher asked the class to give her a sentence about a public servant. One small boy wrote: “The fireman came down the ladder pregnant.” The teacher took the boy side to correct him.

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“Don’t you know what pregnant means?” she asked. “Sure,” said the young boy confident. “It means carrying a child.” I’ll close with this story. A private school in Oregon was faced with a problem. A number of 12-year-old girls were beginning to use lipstick and would put it on in the bathroom. The problem was after they put on their lipstick, they would press their lips on the mirror leaving dozens of little lip prints. Every night the maintenance man would remove them, and the next day the girls would put them back. Finally the principal decided that something had to be done. She called all the girls to the bathroom and met them there with the maintenance man. She explained that all these lip prints were causing a major problem for the janitor who had to clean the mirrors every night. To demonstrate how difficult it had been to clean the mirrors, she asked the janitor to show the girls how much effort was required. He took out a long-handled squeegee, dipped it in the toilet, and cleaned the mirror with it. Since then, there have been no lip prints on the mirror. There are teachers……and then there are educators.

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HAUGHT FUNERAL HOME Serving Plant City and East Hillsborough County

813-717-9300

Recipes Courtesy of The Florida Department of Agriculture

708 W. Dr. M.L. King Jr. Blvd. • Plant City Fl. 33563 Cantaloupe with Chicken Salad

For 10 years Haught Funeral Home has been assisting families during their loss of a loved one with interment in these area cemeteries:

Ingredients Salad 2 cups chicken cooked, shredded 2 cups fresh blueberries, rinsed and dried 1 cup celery, sliced 1 cup green grapes seedless, halved 1/2 cup pecans, chopped 3 cantaloupes, halved and seeded Dressing 1/2 cup low-fat mayonnaise 1/4 cup low-fat sour cream 1 tablespoon lemon juice fresh 1 1/2 teaspoons lemon zest grated 1 1/2 teaspoons natural sugar 1/2 teaspoon fresh ginger root, ground kosher salt and fresh ground pepper to taste

Antioch Bethlehem Hopewell Memorial Gardens Hopewell Church Cemetery Pelote

In recognition of the families who entrusted us with their loved ones in

August 2011

Yield 6 servings

Polynesian Shrimp

Santos Herrera, Jr.—54 of Plant City died July 28, 2011. He is survived by his wife Adela Herrera; children Daniel, Eric, Yasmara; mother Olivia Garcia Herrera; six brothers; five sisters and two grandchildren. Emmett L. Stidham—84 of Plant City died August 1, 2011. He is survived by his wife Junea; sons Darby and Michael; daughters Terri Arrighi, Judy Jefferies; twin sister; eight grandchildren and one great-grandchild. Thomas W. Perkins—74 of Plant City died August 6, 2011. He is survived by his sons Thomas and Tim; daughter Rhonda Kabrich; three brothers and three grandchildren. Charlotte Seiter—94 of Plant City died August 13, 2011. She is survived by her son David; two grandchildren and three great-grandchildren. Edith L. Browning—86 of Plant City died August 15, 2011. She is survived by her son Bud; one sister; three grandchildren; and two great-grandchildren. Kathi Dempsey—54 of Brandon died August 20, 2011. She is survived by her husband Patrick; mother Dondru Hart; and 2 sisters.

Ingredients 1 pound Florida shrimp, cooked, peeled and deveined 1 cup fresh pineapple chunks 1 cup Florida celery, thinly sliced ½ cup seedless green grapes ¼ cup Florida green onions, sliced 2 tablespoons mayonnaise 2 tablespoons sour cream ½ teaspoon salt 1/8 teaspoon white pepper Florida salad greens paprika Preparation Cut large shrimp in half. Drain pineapple, reserving 2 tablespoons juice. Combine shrimp, pineapple, celery, grapes and green onions in a 2-quart bowl. Combine pineapple juice, mayonnaise, sour cream, salt and white pepper; mix well. Pour over shrimp mixture and toss lightly. Chill 30 minutes. Serve on salad greens. Sprinkle with paprika. Yield 6 servings

September 2011

Tim is married to Jo Carpenter who is a native of Plant City.

Haught Funeral Home Remembers…

Preparation In a large bowl, combine chicken, blueberries, celery, grapes and pecans. In a small bowl, mix dressing ingredients. Pour over the chicken mixture and toss gently. Spoon into cantaloupe halves.

26 INTHEFIELD MAGAZINE

Oaklawn Memorial Park Mt. Enon Springhead Shiloh

Haught Funeral Home is family owned and operated. Timothy J. Haught has been a licensed Funeral Director since 1973 and a resident of Plant City since 1952.

TIM & JO HAUGHT

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Kenneth Pitts, Sr.—66 of Plant City died August 22, 2011. He is survived by his wife Teresa; sons Kenneth, Jr. and Terry; daughters Michelle Johnson and Tracy Bailey; three sisters and seven grandchildren. Drakyn Mykael Medley—infant son of Lindsay and Joseph died August 22, 2011. Ethel Cross—94 of Plant City died August 25, 2011. She is survived by her sons James and Chuck; seven grandchildren and twelve greatgrandchildren. Maria DeJesus Montoya-Ortiz—70 of Monterrey, Mexico died August 26, 2011. She is survived by her loving family. John Waldron—64 of Temple Terrace died August 28, 2011. He is survived by his son Carl; daughter Christina Kelleher; three brothers, one sister and six grandchildren. Hubert Graves—72 of Thonotosassa died August 28, 2011. He is survived by his wife Margaret; daughter Kimberly Matthes; two sisters and two grandchildren.

It has been an honor to serve you. September 2011

INTHEFIELD MAGAZINE 27


by Cheryl Kuck India is one of the largest and most fascinating countries in the world. It supports over 17.5 percent of the world’s population with many language dialects, religions and traditions, all woven into a colorful, living and exotic tapestry. Once you have seen the beauty of India the sights, sounds and smell of aromatic spices in the air will stay in your senses and memory forever. Recent U.S. census figures show people emigrating from India to be the fastest growing segment of the immigrant population wave. Hillsborough County is home to the greatest number of Asian Indians in Florida with about 2,500 people taking up residence and so, with two Taste of India restaurants (one in Brandon and one in Tampa) available to us, we are fortunate we can enjoy the experience of India’s culinary cultural diversity without ever leaving our home turf. Restaurant owners Joppen Thomas and George Thomas (same last name but not blood relatives) are business partners and friends for life who grew up together and divide their time between the two Hillsborough locations. There is a third long-time friend, who manages their two east coast restaurants in Melborne and Palm Beach. While both owners are originally from the southern part of the country, George lived in the north for several years and brings the flavors of northern cooking to the extensive and varied menu that traverses India from north to south. The north is known for being the home of the Bengal Tiger and many other species of animals and birds and is rich in a variety of spices while the south provides the fish, rice, coconut, cassava melon, areca and cashew nuts, as well as the spices of pepper and ginger in many of the restaurant’s dishes. All spices are imported from India, while all fresh produce is purchased locally in Hillsborough County. Taste of India is dedicated to the artistic presentation of all foods. Their dishes are a feast for the eyes and are known for their sophisticted use of herbs and spices. “There are some myths about Indian food and our restaurant. One, is that it is too spicy for western palates. We can adjust the spice levels on 80 percent of our menu. Secondly, people think all we have is buffet service. We only serve buffets in the early afternoon and always have fine dining available on one side of the restaurant while the other has a less formal atmosphere,” says George. The distinctive restaurant easily seats 100 guests with a party hall available on-site for catered events. September 10 will open the festive catering season with a traditional harvest celebration and birthday of the diety Ganesha, known as the Lord of success and destroyer of evils. My husband and I were served an ‘ooh’ and ‘ah’ platter containing a huge paper-thin rolled crepe called Masala Dosa, made of rice and lentils, served with mint coconut curry, tomato

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INTHEFIELD MAGAZINE 29


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curry paste, Mulligatawny soup for dipping and can also be stuffed with vegetables, chicken tikka, etc. The magic crepe can be substituted for a more diet-friendly version of the thicker, more caloric and ever-popular Naan bread. One of the most popular dishes is Tandoori Chicken. One half of a chicken is marinated in yogurt and spices and baked in a clay oven. The reason the food is so rich and flavorful is because of the tandoori oven, which seems to simultaneously bake and steam. Dishes like Naan, Chicken Tikka, Tandoori Chicken, Tandoori Lamb, Prawns, Sheekh Kabab, and many vegetarian dishes cannot be made without a tandoor. The Tandoori Chicken is a beautiful dish served with a large variety of colorful fresh vegetables cooked to al dente perfection and is enough to serve two at only $12.95. The most expensive items on the comprehensive menu are lamb dishes at $19.95. Taste of India is able to boast that they serve the most extensive vegetarian menu in the county. In addition to the atmosphere, the excellent and polite good service, it is exciting to go outside of your comfort zone and experience something different. My advice…be adventurous and taste the food of a different culture, it’s a lot less expensive than an airline ticket to India.

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Taste of India A reflection of exotic India in décor and cuisine–flavors traverse the length of India from north to south Locations: 902 East Brandon Blvd. in Brandon 1241 East Fowler Ave. in Tampa Phone: Brandon/Tampa 813-689-4040 Hours: Lunch Buffet $8.99 Mon.–Fri. from 11:30am–2:30pm, Dinner Buffet $11.98 Sat. & Sun. from 12:30pm– 3:00pm, Dinner Sun.–Thurs. from 5-10:00pm, Fri.–Sat. from 5–10:30pm Price Range: Appetizers from $7.95 Entrees from $7.95 to $19.95 Specialty: Most comprehensive vegetarian menu in Greater Tampa area Take-Out: Full menu is available Catering: Extensive catering on-site or outside for all occasions; festival/holy days celebrations, party hall available Seating capacity: 100 Alcohol: Full bar, Indian Beer and non-alcoholic Indian specialty drinks Web site: www.tasteofindiafl.us www.InTheFieldMagazine.com

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Farm Bureau Holds Statewide ‘Tailgate’ Meetings to Gain Member Input for New Farm Bill Policy Debate Florida Farm Bureau Federation President John Hoblick and colleagues recently completed a series of statewide “tailgate” meetings to gather input from members regarding priority programs for the upcoming Farm Bill Policy and debate. Hoblick told west central Florida members gathered at the Hillsborough County Farm Bureau office, “it would be great to be able to change just the date on the current Farm Bill from 2010 to 2012, but that just isn’t possible,” he said. “Large deficits, a debt crisis, high commodity prices and changes to farm programs have created an environment for a perfect storm with regard to upcoming debate.” “We believe in taking our fair share of cuts, but the federal budget couldn’t be balanced if all spending on agriculture was eliminated,” Hoblick said. That drastic measure would only cut the budget by one half of one per cent, he noted. To help formulate the federation’s policy with regard to the upcoming legislation, Hoblick held a series of sessions across Florida “to find out what programs are important to Florida farmers so Farm Bureau’s policy is accurate as we participate in this important upcoming debate.” Information gathered at the “tailgate” sessions will be discussed at the annual meeting in October, as well as during the American Farm Bureau resolutions session in December and at the annual meeting of the American Farm Bureau Federation in January. Farm Bureau staff and leaders get their “marching orders” from the public policy book. Policies are adopted annually through a process that is designed to reflect and act upon concerns and issues that affect producers throughout Florida. Issues are introduced in resolutions developed by Florida Farm Bureau Federation Advisory Committees and county Farm Bureaus. These resolutions are complied into a workbook with copies provided to all county Farm Bureaus several weeks before the state convention where voting delegates meet and discuss the workbook contents. The resolutions are then voted into policies that guide staff and leaders going forward. National Affairs Director Adam Basford, who was a participant in the “tailgate” sessions, compiled the findings of the sessions. There are the main topics that were consistently brought up in response to questions posed by Hoblick to participants. “These are main themes and not meant to be a state of policy or comprehensive account of the meetings,” said Basford.

The themes, according to Basford, are as follows: • Risk management is very important. Virtually all participants agreed that one of the most important and beneficial things the farm bill should do is help manage risk. Crop insurance and disaster programs were both cited as programs that should continue to be part of the farm bill, but each need some reforms. • Research funding should be a priority. Agreement was also consistent on the importance of research. Especially in the specialty crop discussions, participants felt like programs such as the Specialty Crop Research Initiative and the Specialty Crop Block Grants have been beneficial and should continued. • Conservation programs are useful, but could be improved. Participants saw conservation as both important and useful as well as a possible place to cut. The Environmental Quality Incentives Program (EQIP) was often referred to as a program that was beneficial. It was referred to as a ‘win-win’ where producers could receive assistance to do projects they needed to do anyway. Others noted that some requirements, timing and insufficient funding made it less helpful. Other programs faced similar scrutiny. Participants saw them as positive and beneficial, but having flaws. Many spoke to the desire to have conservation programs that incentivized conservation while promoting production, not discouraging it. • Views on Direct Payments varied • Bureaucracy and complexity should be improved. The complexity of programs often makes them too difficult to apply for and administer. Many said that efficiencies and streamlining should be a priority, and could save more money than reforming programs. Some participants noted that technical barriers made programs difficult for those who really need them.” Hoblick noted “cuts will have to be made, but in a fashion that enables farmers to stay in business.” He asked members to carefully consider the issues surrounding the new Farm Bill and to share their thoughts with him or his colleagues as they begin to work on policy development and unified messages to elected officials.

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EXTENSION FOOD CANNING SCHEDULE ANNOUNCED, SOLAR COOKING INFORMATION AVAILABLE AND MORE by Jim Frankowiak Fall is an especially busy time at Hillsborough County Extension with a new and expanded schedule of canning classes, the availability of information on solar cooking and the new MyPlate nutrition initiative. Canning classes, which are held at the Extension office in Seffner, are taking place September 9, 20, 23, 26 and 28, October1 and 21 and November 8, 9 and 18. For specific class information and reservations, visit http://www.hillsborough.extension.ufl.edu. Once on the site, click on Food, Nutrition and Health along the left margin, then click on Home Canning and Freezing. The schedules and links to register will be there. “We offer classes for the preservation of jams, fruit, pickles and tomatoes using the boiling water method, plus the pressure canning of meat and seafood,” said Extension faculty member Dr. Mary Keith, who is also a Licensed Dietitian and Nutritionist. “Reservations are on a first come, first served basis.” There is a requested $5 donation of each participant to cover the cost of supplies and handouts provided during the sessions. No one needs to bring canners or other equipment. “There are classes mornings, afternoons and evenings, weekdays and weekends, so hopefully there will be something to meet everyone’s interest and schedule!” If you have a canner with a dial gauge on it, you can get it tested at the office, or after any of the canning classes. Please call Mary Keith at 813-7445519 to set up an appointment for the testing, or you can mail just the gauge to her to test. She will return it by mail with the results. The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s new Guide to Home Canning is available at the office during working hours, and will also be available at the sessions. The cost for that publication is $15. There are several changes from older procedures, so even if you’ve been canning for years, you might be interested in getting the newest information. “For those unable to attend one of our canning sessions, it is possible to review our home canning video on line,” said Keith. That video may be viewed by visiting http://youtube/boDQT7dVuYU. The video shows the full procedure for using a pressure canner, canning carrots, and has information on various kinds of pressure canners. Extension is also offering information and classes tied to nutritional needs and food preparation during natural disasters. “While we all hope this hurricane season will pass without incident in our area, it is important to be prepared,” said Keith. “That includes having a supply of food and beverages on hand in the event of a disaster and using those items in your refrigerator and freezer in the event there is an extended power outage.” Dr. Keith has prepared a “Hurricane Food Supply Checklist” that guides a family through the proper amounts and types of food and beverages to have available in the event serious weather is forecast. The checklist is available at the Extension office or accessible online at http://hillsboroughnutrition.ifas.ufl.edu/GeneralNutrition/FoodPubsA-Z/HurricaneChecklistEng%204.pdf. A video with suggestions and help for choosing foods for your emergency food

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supply is also on the website at http://hillsboroughnutrition.ifas.ufl. edu/index.shtml#Solar, then playing the “Preparing for a Storm” link. For those seeking a hard copy via U.S. Mail, call Dr. Keith at 813-744-5519. Please leave your address if you must leave a message. “Solar cooking is becoming a popular way to prepare food in the aftermath of a natural disaster,” noted Keith. Extension has developed a video presentation on solar cooking which can be borrowed from the Hillsborough County Library system. “We also offered solar cooking classes at Extension,” said Keith. During those sessions, participants saw how to use commercially manufactured solar cookers and made their own. While there are no more classes on the schedule right now, instructions for a simple cooker are on the website at http://hillsboroughnutrition. ifas.ufl.edu/GeneralNutrition/GeneralPubs/Solar%20Cooker%20 handout.pdf. More complete instructions and resource lists are available from the Extension office. Contact Dr. Keith for copies. Please leave a mailing address if you leave a message, because the materials are in hard copy form. “For those interested in building their own solar cooker, they will need cooler or cardboard boxes, insulating material if they use cardboard boxes, aluminum foil, cardboard for reflectors, and duct tape. Solar cooking is an inexpensive way to utilize those refrigerated items that may go to waste if power is not available for an extended period,” said Keith. Dr. Keith also wants to remind everyone of the importance of making the right food choices for a health lifestyle. “That’s a critical first step even before thinking about canning, food preparation or assembling items in anticipation of a serious weather event,” she said. The USDA recently introduced MyPlate, a contemporary version of the old Food Pyramid. “We’re hoping it will be an easier way to visually recognize proper nutritional choices,” she said. “Information in both English and Spanish is available at www. ChooseMyPlate.Gov,” said Keith, “and that includes 14 tip sheets with 10 nutritional tips on each sheet for audiences such as the general population, children and vegetarians.” The website also has a page to calculate the calories you need, gives you how much of each of the different food groups you need to get those calories in a balanced way, and much, much more. The initial Choose MyPlate tip sheet offers these 10 tips “for a great plate.” • Balance calories • Enjoy your food, but eat less • Avoid oversized portions • Foods to eat more often • Make half your plate fruits and vegetables • Switch to fat-free or low-fat milk • Make half your grains whole grains • Foods to eat less often • Compare sodium in goods • Drink water instead of sugary drinks “These are simple tips that, if followed, can lead to a healthy lifestyle,” said Keith.

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September 2011

INTHEFIELD MAGAZINE 35


Why Point the Finger at Nonpoint Source Pollution: Storm water Run-Off by Susan Haddock Commercial Horticulture/Integrated Pest Management/Small Farms Agent, UF/IFAS Hillsborough County Extension Non-point source (NPS) pollution is both air and water pollution that comes from diffuse sources. Diffuse sources means that the pollutants come from large spread out areas and therefore a single source cannot be identified. Although the pollution has original sources the ability for the pollutants to move long distances combined with the multiple sources of the pollution make it nonpoint source pollution. NPS air pollution comes from sources such as industrial processes, automobiles and coal burning. NPS water pollution occurs when rainfall, snowmelt, or irrigation runs over land or through the ground, picks up natural and human made pollutants, and deposits them into rivers, lakes, and coastal waters or introduces them into ground water. NPS water pollution comes from sources such as: • Oil, grease and other vehicle discharges • Pesticides and nutrients from lawns, gardens and agricultural areas • Viruses, bacteria and nutrients from pet waste and failing septic systems • Heavy metals from roof shingles and vehicles • Sediment from eroding stream banks, improperly managed construction sites, crop and forest lands • Thermal heat from impervious surfaces such as asphalt roads The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency reports NPS as the leading cause of water pollution in the United States today. Significant causes of nonpoint source water pollution include runoff from agriculture, hydrological and habitat modification, silviculture and urbanization. Because NPS water pollution comes from so many different sources it is a difficult problem to solve with any one specific solution and difficult to regulate. Even though the effects of NPS pollution on waters such as the Hillsborough and Alafia Rivers, Tampa Bay and many lakes and ponds may not be fully known, it is known that the pollutants result in harmful effects on fish and shellfish, wildlife, recreation, beaches and drinking water supplies. These pollutants also affect the aesthetics of where we live. Have you noticed the green slime on the surface of your conservation or retention/detention pond lately? Stormwater run-off is one factor of NPS water pollution. Stormwater run-off is rain that runs off streets, rooftops, parking lots, lawns and other land surfaces into the closest water body. The runoff is not absorbed by the soil. This is because the soil may have reached its saturation point or the soil surface is covered with impervious surfaces such as roads, bridges, parking lots or buildings. As the water moves over surfaces, contaminants move with the water and get deposited into rivers, lakes, ponds and the Tampa Bay. Natural areas such as forests,

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wetlands and grasslands are porous, trap rainwater and allow rainwater to slowly filter into the ground. Impervious or nonporous surfaces such as roads, bridges, parking lots and buildings prevent rainwater from filtering into the ground. Instead most of the rainwater, along with the contaminants, remains above ground and runs off either directly or through storm water drains into water bodies. As this surface water accumulates it runs off in large amounts. The deposited water can have volume and velocity capable of eroding riverbanks and damaging the vegetation that hold riverbanks in place. The sediment from contaminants and erosion causes turbidity or cloudiness in the water. The contaminated sediment includes oil, grease, toxic chemicals, nutrients, pesticides, bacteria, viruses, and heavy metals. The resulting cloudiness reduces the amount of sunlight that can reach lower depths and inhibits the growth of beneficial submerged aquatic vegetation (SAV). SAV is important as it provides a habitat for aquatic life, produces oxygen and traps sediment. As a result, fish and shellfish that depend on this plant life are affected as their habitat deteriorates. If a hypoxic condition occurs where the level of oxygen in the water is very low the aquatic life will die. The lack of oxygen and increased bacteria as algae decays will result in a fish kill. Sediments can also clog fish gills and interfere with drinking water purification systems. The combination of suspended sediments and excessive nutrients can create a eutrophic condition in a water body. Eutropic conditions occur when excess nitrates and phosphates, by either natural or human means, produce excessive plant growth and decay. Excessive or improper fertilization and failing septic systems are the two main human contributors of nitrates and phosphates. The plant growth is usually in the form of simple algae rather than beneficial SAV. This algae “bloom” can cause a severe reduction in water quality depleting oxygen and turning water to a green, yellow, brown or red color. Over the last decade, and especially recently, attention is being focused on storm water runoff related to urbanization. This is because urbanization produces a wide variety of pollutants and large amounts of runoff. As little as 10 percent impervious cover in a watershed can result in water body degradation. Did you know that a typical city block contributes more than five times more runoff than a woodland area of the same size?

For information on managing urban storm water runoff look for the next article in the series Why Point the Finger at Nonpoint Source Pollution: Managing Urban Runoff or see the UF/IFAS Florida Friendly Landscaping website at http://fyn. ifas.ufl.edu/.

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The Growing Link Between China and the Gulf Coast Research and Education Center

Phosphate Operations “Helping Farmers Feed a Hungry World”

by Jim Frankowiak You don’t really need a globe to recognize the distance between China and the University of Florida/IFAS Gulf Coast Research Center at Wimauma is very substantial. However, the Center’s teaching and research reputation, a UF office and outreach program in China and the popularity of the Web have all been instrumental in enhancing the link. Currently there are three post doctoral students and four graduate students at the Center, a dramatic increase that has taken place in just a few years. GCREC faculty member Dr. Zhano Deng, Associate Professor of Environmental Horticulture, attributes the three factors above to the growth in popularity of the Center among Chinese students. “In addition, both governmental and private sector organizations maintain and update lists of educational and research facilities around their world where they will either send or recruit future employees,” said Deng. “This is an important part of their respective growth plans for the future and recognition of our global marketplace and how best to succeed.” In addition to Dr. Deng, whose focus is the breeding of ornamentals, the graduate students and post doctoral researchers also work with faculty members Dr. Gary Vallad – plant pathology, Dr. Amy Shober – soil and water and Dr. Jay Scott – vegetable breeding. The current group includes Zhe Cao from the Yinchuan area of northwest central China. Cao has a masters degree from China Agricultural University and holds a doctorate in plant genetics and breeding. He worked for several years in the golf course industry and as a rice agronomist in China. Cao plans to return to China and use his advanced skills to assist farmers in his native land. Zhixuan Qin learned of the Center through a search on the Web. She is pursuing an interdisciplinary doctorate in ecology with a concentration on soil and water science. Qin, who is working with Dr. Shober, plans to return to China once she has received her doctorate. Wenlan Tien, who is married, attended Nanjing Forestry University and is focused on a doctorate with emphasis on the jatropha plant, a primary source for biodiesel fuel. Her advisor

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is based at the UF Center in Homestead. She plans post doctoral work in Europe. Dr. Shixiao Xu has a two-year appointment in Dr. Deng’s Landscape and Ornamental Plant Breeding program. He is a recent graduate student at the Huazhong Agricultural University where he earned his doctorate in Plant Molecular Biology. Dr. Xu is married and his wife, Dongfang Cai, is pursing a doctorate in plant genetics in China. Xiahoe Song is a doctoral student at Northwest Agricultural and Forestry University in Yangling, China. She, too, is married and her husband, Yankai Li, is volunteering with Dr. Hugh Smith at the Center while on a sabbatical from his doctoral studies. Song learned of the Center through a referral from a colleague of Dr. Deng at the University of Maryland. Song plans to return to China following her work with Dr. Deng at the Center on characterizing plant and pathogen interactions and understanding plant disease resistance. She will also be working in the pathology lab with Dr. Natalia Peres and her team. Doctoral student Xiaohui Yang is enrolled at the Institute of Vegetables and Flowers of the Chinese Academy of Agricultural Sciences in Beijing. She is working with Dr. Scott primarily on mapping of the Ty-2 gene molecular markets in the lab and other related research. Yang became aware of the Center through her Chinese advisor, a tomato breeder familiar with Dr. Scott and his work. The final member of the group is Dr. Cheng-Hua Huang, who received his doctorate in Plant Pathology from the University of Florida. He is working with Dr. Vallad and is in charge of studies leading to improved bio-based disease management strategies for commercial vegetable production in Florida. While the cost for Chinese students studying at GCREC are substantial, Dr. Deng noted the Chinese government has a substantial program in place called the China Scholarship Council. “Students may apply for scholarships for periods of one to four years,” he said. “Some of the students are scholarship recipients.” All of the students and post doctoral researchers appreciate and enjoy the opportunity to work at the Center, but all also agree “getting used to Florida summers takes some doing.”

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Please join CF Industries in supporting community events:  United Way of Central Florida – Serving Polk, Hardee, and Highlands Counties Campaign Launch – September 21, 2011 Days of Caring – October 1-31, 2011

Hunting Season 2011‐2012  Season

Zone B Dates

Zone C Dates

Deer - Archery

Oct. 15 – Nov. 13, 2011

Sept. 17 - Oct. 16, 2011

Deer - Dog Training

Oct. 29 – Nov. 17, 2011

Oct. 1 - 20, 2011

Deer - Crossbow

Nov. 14 – 18, 2011

Oct. 17 - 21, 2011

Deer - Muzzleloading Gun

Nov. 19 – Dec. 2, 2011

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Dec. 3 – Feb. 19, 2011

Nov. 5, 2011 - Jan. 22, 2012

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Fall Turkey

Dec. 3, 2011 – Jan. 29, 2012

Nov. 5, 2011 - Jan. 1, 2012

Quail and Gray Squirrel

Nov. 12, 2011 – Mar. 4, 2012

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Bobcat and Otter

Dec. 1, 2011 – Mar. 1, 2012

Dec. 1, 2011 - Mar. 1, 2012

Spring Turkey

Mar. 17 – Apr. 22, 2012

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Remember to do your part  in protecting Florida’s fish  and wildlife resources for  future generations.    And always … safety first!  Florida Whitetail bucks photographed by Tyler Webb, CF Industries employee, on CF land in Hardee County, FL. 

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U.S. Labor Department Awards Florida $4.1 Million to Help Overcome Undemployment and Underemploying of Migrant and Seasonal Workers Added Funds for Temporary and Permanent Housing Assistance Also Announced by Jim Frankowiak Late this past June, the U.S. Department of Labor announced labor training grants totaling $83.9 million through the National Farmworker Jobs Program (NFJP) to combat unemployment and underemployment experienced by migrant and seasonal farmworkers. Of that total, Florida’s Department of Education will receive $4.1 million to provide training, employment and support for Florida farmworkers and their families. An additional $5.7 million in grants was announced to provide temporary or permanent housing assistance and two organizations in Florida – Farmworker Coordinating Council of Palm Beach County Inc. and Florida Non-Profit Housing Inc. -will receive nearly $1.0 million of that total award. The NFJP helps eligible workers improve their agricultural job skills and train for careers in emerging industries and occupations that offer high wages and more stable employment. The program also offers services such as child care, health care and transportation assistance. “Agricultural workers face significant barriers to stable employment, and all too often it is their families who pay the price,” said Labor Secretary Hilda Solis. “These grants address this reality by not only helping workers improve and expand their job skills, but also by providing housing and other crucial support services.” The housing assistance grants provide permanent housing assistance, temporary and/or emergency housing assistance or a combination of both. Permanent housing assistance services include pre-development and development services, project management, and resource development to secure acquisition, construction or renovation, and other operating funds for farmworker housing. Temporary housing assistance services include housing units for temporary occupancy, the management of such housings unit, emergency housing payments and case management. The NFJP is authorized by Congress as part of the Workforce Investment Act of 1998. Grants are allocated through a formula that estimates the number of eligible workers in each state or territory. Florida’s Department of Education has successfully implemented this grant for more than a quarter century. The department provides senior management at the state level to provide guidance, support and oversight of the programs and operations of the Florida Jobs and Education Program (FJEP). FJEP pro-

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vides educational and supportive services to chronically unemployed and underemployed farmworkers to obtain the education needed to prepare to enter or advance in the workforce; prepare their children for success in school; and exercise their rights as citizens in their communities. Eligible farmworkers must be disadvantaged, prove a history of farm work and reside legally in the United States. Most program participants are Florida home-based farmworkers and reside in the state year round. FJEP encompasses 21 counties and 12 Workforce Development Regions in central western, central, central eastern, southwestern and southeastern parts of Florida. FJEP also has the capacity to mobilize resources through collaborative relationships statewide and in local communities. Services are delivered by specific sites established through financial contract agreements with community colleges, school districts, technical centers, community and faith-based organizations and county governments. To enable access to services, FJEP coordinates its activities through the state’s Workforce Boards and their One-Stop Centers through outreach, co-enrollment and the sharing of data. The school districts of Hillsborough and Polk counties are among those agencies statewide serving in a fiscal capacity relative to the training grant. The amount recommended for Hillsborough County during the current fiscal year is $341,714 and for Polk County, $291,612. To locate information regarding other FJEP service providers within the state of Florida, access the Florida Department of Education, Division of Career and Adult Education’s website at: http://www.fldoe.org/workforce/fjep/. Program activities permitted under the grant include core, intensive and training services, as well as related assistance services. Core services are primarily informational and those that participants can access on their own. Intensive services are highly individualized, while training services are keyed to helping to prepare program participants to pursue specific occupations. Related assistance services include, but are not limited to emergency assistance and non-training related support, workplace safety and farmworker pesticide safety, heat stress prevention and other areas of aid to participants. The effectiveness of project activities is based on established and approved performance goals. Department of Education staff monitors recipients’ compliance with program and fiscal requirements according to applicable federal and state laws and regulations.

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USDA Terms 27 Florida Counties ‘Primary Natural Disaster Areas’ Emergency Assistance Available by Jim Frankowiak The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) has designated 27 counties in Florida – Hillsborough and Polk included – as primary natural disaster areas due to losses caused by drought and excessive heat that began January 1 and continues. “Florida producers can count on USDA to provide emergency assistance during these difficult times,” said Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack. “President Obama and I are committed to reducing the impact of this disaster for Florida producers and we will commit all available resources to help in recovery.” Among those counties are Hillsborough and Polk, as well as Charlotte and Orange. Farmers and ranchers in selected contiguous counties also qualify for natural disaster assistance. Those counties include Hardee, Highlands, Manatee, Pasco, Pinellas and Sarasota. The counties listed above, as well as a host of others in Florida, Alabama and Georgia were designated natural disaster areas July 29, making all qualified farm operators in those areas eligible for low interest emergency (EM) loans from USDA’s Farm Service Agency (FSA), provided they meet eligibility requirements. The USDA noted farmers in eligible counties have eight months from the date of the declaration, July 29, to apply for loans to help cover part of their actual losses. FSA will consider each loan applications on its own merits, taking into account the extent of losses, security available and repayment ability. FSA has a variety of programs, in addition to the EM loan program, to help eligible farmers recover from adversity. USDA has also made other programs available to assist farmers and ranches, including the Supplemental Revenue Assistance Program (SURE), which was approved as part of the Food, Conservation and Energy Act of 2008; the Emergency Conservation Program; Federal Crop Insurance’ and the Noninsured Crop Disaster Assistant Program. Interested farmers and ranchers are encouraged to contact their local USDA Service Center for further information on eligi-

bility requirements and application procedures for the programs mentioned in this article and others. Additional information is also available online at http://disaster.fsa.usda.gov. The Code of Federal Regulation (CFR) defines a “qualified operator” as “…the individual or entity that provides the labor, management, and capital to operate the farm. The operator can be either an owner-operator or tenant-operator. Under applicable state law, an entity may have to receive authorization from the State in which the farm is located to be the owner and/or operator of the farm,” said Bronwyn Bethea-Myers, Farm Loan Manager at the USDA Service Center in Plant City. “Anyone who feels they have suffered a qualifying loss due to the specified disaster should apply to their respective FSA office. To apply for an EM loan for Hillsborough, Polk and Hardee (in addition to DeSoto, Manatee, Pinellas and Sarasota) counties, any interested applicants should contact our office in Plant City, and we will send an application package,” said Bethea-Myers. The Plant City Service Center phone number is 813-752-1474, Extension 2. “One of the first things we will look for, though, upon receiving the application is to see if the applicant has attempted to obtain credit elsewhere (at the lender’s reasonable rates and terms, not ours). This is one of the eligibility requirements, and one that I recommend they take care of before they take time to complete our application package,” she said. “Eligibility requirements for the EM program are detailed in the FSA’s loan making handbook,” said Bethea-Myers. That information is available on the web at http://www.fsa.usda.gov/ Internet/FSA File/3-flp r02 a03 pdf. EM requirements are outlined on pages 10-8 through 10-15. “Also, eligibility requirements beginning on page 4-2 through 4-17 also apply,” she said. For those interested in visiting the Plant City Service Center, the address is 201 South Collins Street, Suite 201, Plant City, Florida 33563. An advance call to schedule an appointment is suggested.

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Florida 4-H Hosts Visiting 4-H Leaders from Iraq by Jim Frankowiak Yes, the headline is correct. Florida was one of three states recently visited by a group of 4-H leaders from Iraq, the 81st foreign country to become associated with 4-H International. The nine leaders were joined by three interpreters, all were part of the International Visitor Leadership Program. The visit took place July 16 – 27 and included stops in Pennsylvania and Nebraska, as well as the Sunshine State. How this all came about, the progress of 4-H in Iraq and interesting ties to Florida, make for an interesting story. In early 2009 there was no 4-H in Iraq, but in April of that year Mary Kerstetter arrived as a one-year volunteer U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) advisor for the Department of State’s Provincial Reconstruction Team in the Anbar Province where she was to work to help build Iraq’s agricultural sector. “My work as a district conservationist with USDA’s Natural Resources Conservation Service in Ellicottville, New York, would prove useful in helping Iraq better manage its natural resources,” said Kerstetter. “As I began to acclimate to my new work environment, I found that my active involvement in 4-H as a child growing up in Pennsylvania was a resource I could draw on as well to make a difference in Iraq. I realized that starting a 4-H program in Iraq would be a good way to help the country ensure a brighter future for its children.” 4-H is the premier youth development program of the USDA. Originating in the early 1900s as “four-square education,” the 4-H’s head-hearthands-health seek to promote positive youth development, facilitate learning and engage youth in the work of their community through USDA’s Cooperative Extension Service to enhance the quality of life. 4-H is recognized worldwide and exists in more than 80 countries.

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Though none of the Iraqis had ever heard of 4-H, Kerstetter found high levels of interest and support from the provincial agricultural ministry and private sector. Unlike the U.S., where 4-H is a USDA program, in Iraq 4-H the private sector provides the foundation for 4-H and sponsors individual clubs. Kerstetter noted that in Iraq as in the U.S. sheep are a popular species of livestock, small and easy for children to handle. She submitted a funding request for $25,000 to cover the cost of starting a 4-H club in Anbar Province with the funds to be used to purchase grain, sheep shears, hoof nippers, feed pans, water buckets and sheep. The grant was approved and the foundation for 4-H in Iraq was put in place and the focus was placed on disadvantaged children. To help grow the 4-H program in Iraq, Kerstetter reached out to former colleagues for assistance. That included retired Hardee County Extension Director Lockie Gary and retired state 4-H Program Leader Marilyn Norman. They provided materials to help Kerstetter and her efforts with 4-H in Iraq. What began with 24 youngsters has grown to 42 clubs with 1,100 children involved throughout the country. To nurture the development of 4-H in Iraq, Kerstetter was successful in securing a grant for Iraqi 4-H leaders to come to the U.S. to learn more about 4-H, enhance their skills and help their efforts in Iraq. The trip was “pending” for a period of time, but was finally approved this past May. It included stops in Pennsylvania, Nebraska and Florida. Leading the Florida leg of the trip was Georgene Bender, South Central Regional Specialized 4-H Agent and “the invaluable assistance of 46 others,” said Bender, who serves 11 counties in the west central part of the state from her office at the UF/IFAS Plant City Center.

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INTHEFIELD MAGAZINE 45


It was a fitting match since Bender’s 4-H tenure includes posts in Poland, Japan, Latin and South America. After stops in Pennsylvania and Nebraska, the group came to Orlando and began their visit at Disney’s EPCOT with a behind the scenes tour of agricultural areas at the attraction. “Some of the techniques they saw depicted similar land conditions in their native Iraq,” said Bender. The EPCOT tour also included a fish farm, alligator pool and other crops. The next day the group visited Arcadia where they attended a local 4-H club meeting and saw demonstrations from DeSoto County 4-H leader Cindy Kinard on poultry and a sheep showmanship and shearing demonstration from Jessica Squitieri, Hillsborough County 4-H’er. Norman also met with the visitors and discussed the value of 4-H in the development of citizenship, leadership and life skills among youth. The handling of livestock in emergency response situations was the focus of a meeting with the Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services State Agriculture Response Team. Later in the day, the group observed a cattle sale at the Arcadia Stockyards and toured the Dakin Dairy and Sales Outlet. “The sale was of particular interest,” said Bender. “In Iraq livestock sales are much more informal, though the cost per

animal is as much as 10 times more than in the U.S.” The day concluded with a series of demonstrations at the Range Cattle Research and Education Center and a barbecue dinner reception. The group’s last day in Florida was spent with more demonstrations and roundtable discussions on designing quality programs for youth at the college level. Programs such as Collegiate 4-H and course work in the University of Florida Agriculture Education and Communications Department were discussed. There was much interest between both groups to participate in some educational exchange via existing distance education programs for students in Iraq. Since Iraq 4-H is sponsored by local businesses, they are interested in developing partnerships with universities at home and abroad. There was also an opportunity to interact at lunch with more than 300 senior 4-H members at the annual State 4-H Congress. At this writing, the final chapter in this story is yet to be written. As part of the grant to bring the Iraqi 4-H leaders to the U.S., Bender and some of her colleagues may be going to Iraq to help teach the teachers during a 10-day trip later this year. The trip is subject to final approval, but Bender “is ready to go.”

Visitors Invited to the 19 Annual Haunted Woods Event th

2011 Florida Ranch Rodeo Finals Sponsored by

The Florida Cattlemen’s Association & Florida Cattlewomen, Inc.

To benefit the Florida Cattlemen’s Foundation

Friday, September 30 - Saturday, October 1 Rodeo Finals begin at 7 pm each day

Cowboy Heritage Festival Saturday, 10 am - 5 pm

The Florida Department of Environmental Protection’s Hillsborough River State Park will host the 19th annual Haunted Woods event on Friday, October 21 and Saturday, October 22, 2011. A favorite unique outdoor haunted attraction for the past 19 years, this event features a spooky guided trail through the woods after dark with strange and scary things for adults. For those with small children, there will also be a harvest celebration including costume contests and children’s activities through the decorated campground. Tram rides will be offered on Saturday night only. Florida State Parks are in various stages of accessibility. Should assistance be required, contact the park office in advance. Admission to this event is free with a donation of $5.00 per person and children five and under are free. For additional information, contact Hillsborough River State Park at (813) 987-6771.

46 INTHEFIELD MAGAZINE

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Whip Cracking Contest • Story Telling Cracker Cow Camps • Cowboy Poetry and Artwork • Leather Crafts Saddle, Spur & Whip Making Swamp Cabbage Cooking • Beef Cook-off

Silver Spurs Arena at Osceola Heritage Park, Kissimmee Rodeo Tickets — $10.00 Children 10 & Under Free For more information visit www.floridacattlemen.org www.InTheFieldMagazine.com

September 2011

INTHEFIELD MAGAZINE 47


The Premier Showplace for Talent in Florida

SEPTEMBER 16 RICHIE MERRITT

Richie Merritt, formally of the Marcels, will be performing in the Red Rose Dining Room. Also, P.J. Leary’s Las Vegas Sounds perform before and after the show.

SEPTEMBER 17 & 23 RALPH ALLOCCO & SECOND WIND

Performing in the Red Rose Dining Room

SEPTEMBER 30 JOHNNY ALSTON’S MOTOWN ROCK & ROLL REVUE

Join this special Sunday Tea with a reading by Marjorie York with her one woman show of “Just Call Me Peggy,” a tribute to Gone With The Wind author, Margaret Mitchell; cast members will also be in attendence to sign autographs and talk about their experience of being in one of the greatest films of all time! (In cooperation with “Gone With The Wind Memories” of Plant City)

OCTOBER 7, 14, 22 & 29 RALPH ALLOCCO & SECOND WIND

A dynamite crowd pleaser! P.J. Leary’s Las Vegas Sounds perform before and after the show.

Performing in the Red Rose Dining Room

OCTOBER 8 LOLA & THE SAINTS

SEPTEMBER 24 THE MYSTICS

Doo Wop At Its Best! Relive the 50s & 60s as though it was yesterday. “Forever in Love,” “Just Over the Brooklyn Bridge.” Plus, P.J. Leary’s Las Vegas Sounds.

The Mystics, including, original members of the group, George Galfo and Phil Cracolici, will perform their hits, including their number one chart topper “Hushabye.” P.J. Leary’s Las Vegas Sounds perform before and after the show.

OCTOBER 1 1861 BALL

OCTOBER 2 “JUST CALL ME PEGGY” A TRIBUTE TO MARGARET MITCHELL

OCTOBER 15 & 21 JOHNNY ALSTON’S MOTOWN ROCK & ROLL REVUE

A dynamite crowd pleaser! P.J. Leary’s Las Vegas Sounds perform before and after the show.

In cooperation with “Gone With The Wind Memories” of Plant City, it’s a Tribute to one of America’s top novels and films! Come see and meet original Gone With the Wind cast members, Mickey Kuhn and Patrick Curtis. Music from the 97th Regimental String Band. Period costumes welcome, but not required. Doors open 6:30, Dinner served at 7:00, 1861 Ball Events at 8:00.

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NOVEMBER 18 COVER TO COVER

The trio covers the top hits from yesterday to today! Also, P.J. Leary’s Las Vegas Sounds perform before and after the show.

NOVEMBER 19 & 25 RALPH ALLOCCO & SECOND WIND

Performing in the Red Rose Dining Room

NOVEMBER 26 LOLA & THE SAINTS

A Red Rose favorite. Great hits from the 50s & 60s. Plus, P.J. Leary’s Las Vegas Sounds.

DECEMBER 10 CHRIS MACDONALD

“ELVIS”

The magic of “the King or Rock-n-roll” in a truly dynamic performance celebrating the life and music of one of the greatest entertainers and pop culture icons of our time. Destiny opens and closes the show!

DECEMBER 16 THE FOUR ACES

The trio covers the top hits from yesterday to today! Also, P.J. Leary’s Las Vegas Sounds perform before and after the show.

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September 2011

INTHEFIELD MAGAZINE 49


A Truly Sweet Sweetheart

Kaitlyn Gill

by Ginny Mink

In

a world where spokespeople are just paid actors (according to the fine print) it’s exhilarating to meet someone who is genuinely excited about who they represent and what they do. There’s this contagious thrill one contracts, almost virally, when speaking to someone who is hyper-enthusiastic about a subject, product, idea or group. You can’t help but desire to learn more from that person, to engage in further conversation and perhaps even get involved with whatever he or she represents. Unfortunately, young people are often wishy washy in these arenas, but there are the rare exceptions and Kaitlyn Gill is definitely one of them.

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INTHEFIELD MAGAZINE 51


The upbeat, positive nature of her dialogue could potentially influence even the most reticent person to reconsider the value and beneficial attributes of partaking in beef, which is a really good thing since part of her job as the Florida Cattleman’s Sweetheart is to promote the concept of eating beef for its nutritional excellence. She says, “You need a 3 oz serving of lean beef each day to get 51 percent of the nutrients necessary for your everyday diet.” Kaitlyn grew up in Fort Lonesome, the home of her father and grandfather. Though her friends would call her crazy, she says, “I wouldn’t move to the city for a million dollars! I drive a truck, haul trailers and saddle my own horse, I’m Southern.” Obviously, having been reared on her family’s nearly 5,000-acre cow/calf operation called the Lonesome G Ranch, has qualified her to make such a statement. “I can remember being 4 years old sitting on the cow pen helping Dad,” she explained. It was at this same age that Kaitlyn got her first glimpses of the Florida Cattleman’s Sweetheart. She recalled, “Thinking it was cool because they were promoting what my parents made a living off of. Sweetheart isn’t about looks, it’s your knowledge on the cattle industry, how well you present the info, how you communicate to others, to educate them (the consumers) on the importance of beef.” So, with respect for previous Sweethearts, Kaitlyn made it her goal to achieve that same title when she was old enough. Talk about a young woman with an extensive and absolutely impressive amount of drive! She says she did all her proficiency contests on her own cow/calf operation. After the loss of her 17-year-old brother, Kaitlyn’s parents handed down his herd of cattle to her. They are Herefords, but her brother’s true passion was for Brahmans. She pronounces that, “Brahmers.” Amazingly, Kaitlyn won every proficiency award she competed for.

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She started showing the Brahmans in middle school and “developed a niche for the Florida environment by breeding a Brahman bull to the Hereford cattle. That’s what produces the Golden F-1 Tiger Stripe. They have a unique tolerance for the heat and can adapt better when there’s a shortage of grass,” she said. As she’s grown her herd she’s become known for producing the Golden F-1 Tiger Stripe. She says there’s the “glory of getting up every day and saddling my horse and doing what I love to do.” Because Kaitlyn was “born into the cow/beef industry,” it’s no wonder that she intends to “promote the beef industry for the rest of (her) life.” After all, she’s a fifth generation cattle rancher living on a large cow/calf operation. Nor is it any surprise that she was, “Big in FFA. I did all on the Cattleman’s industry; all my speeches were on it. I was preparing myself to run for Sweetheart. I studied everything on them.” So, as her senior year came to an end she had a tough decision to make, either “run for State FFA Officer or Sweetheart.” She says, “I sat down and thought about it and decided to do Sweetheart and I wouldn’t trade it for the world.” Kaitlyn’s no stranger to award winning and recognition. In fact, she won the National Cattleman’s Public Speaking Contest at the National Cattleman’s Convention in Phoenix, Arizona. “I competed against college graduates,” she adds, obviously proud of her own accomplishments, with good reason. In addition, she says she achieved, “two pristine titles in FFA.” She further explains, “My sophomore year I was the Florida State Star Greenhand. You have to have your own business. They pick four finalists and then do an interview. My Greenhand was diversified. I did it on my cattle operation and my parent’s company, Southern Developers and Earth Moving’s, Environmental Division, which relocates

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gopher turtles prior to mining.” Her senior year she was the Florida State Star Farmer. “I did that on the environmental company. It says you know what you’re doing. It’s the top of the top of all Star Awards. There were 200 applicants and that was a week before running for Sweetheart.” That very next week Kaitlyn was off to Marco Island to compete for the one honor she’d been training her whole life to attain. “There were eight amazing and brilliant girls there. Each knew the cattle industry front and back. We were all there for the same reason, to get the word out that the Cattlemen are here. When we were there it wasn’t like a competition. I got to meet girls from all over the state. It was a week full of tests, interviews and presentations. It was a jam packed, amazing week!” Now that Kaitlyn has been named the Florida Cattleman’s Sweetheart she says she’s “done a variety of things: UF Youth Seminar to educate youth on beef, cattle shows and the National Day of the Cowboy in Okeechobee.” She explained, “My job is to travel the state from the Panhandle to the very southern part to promote the cattle industry and get people to eat beef. I’m traveling, giving speeches and teaching third graders about the by-products and nutrients from cows.” She recently attended the Cattleman’s Summer Conference located on the Deseret Ranch in Kissimmee. This is the largest cow/calf operation in the U.S. “People from all over the U.S. came. I served them lunch and got to talk to them about how they run their cow/calf ranches versus how we run ours.” While she was thrilled by the opportunity, she admits that her experience at the National Day of the Cowboy is one she’ll “cherish for the rest of my life.” Upon further probing she expounds on why this event made such an impact on her. “They go back as if they were in the old days,

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back when cattlemen had to drive their cattle down the highway to get the cattle to the market. They reenacted it with a herd of old cracker steers and I got to be a part and ride up front as the Sweetheart. I hauled my horse down there to do it!” She definitely finds her excitement and enthusiasm difficult to contain based on the rapidity in which she spews forth all the cool things she gets to do in her illustrious new position. She says she wants to leave a legacy that will “make my grandparents, parents and county proud. I brought home the title for Hillsborough County. Everyone wants to be the Cattleman’s Sweetheart,” she says, “and I’m the lucky girl that gets to be it!” Thankfully she realizes, as Spiderman did, that “with great power comes great responsibility.” There are “little girls looking up to me and I can remember being that little girl. It’s not about wearing a crown or a sash. It’s about what my job is, to promote the beef industry, providing a safe, healthy and wholesome product. We’re not going to produce something we wouldn’t feed our own families. Cattlemen do take care of their cattle. We’re out there every day checking them, making sure they’re healthy, happy and have what they need.” Kaitlyn’s planning on attending Abraham Baldwin Agricultural College (ABAC) in Tifton, Georgia. However, “Since I won Sweetheart I’ve been asked not to move out of the state for the year. So, I postponed ABAC for a year and I’m just going to be going to HCC.” One thing is for sure about Kaitlyn Gill, when she puts her mind to something all the competition had better watch out. No doubt she’ll make HCC proud to have her and will remain Florida’s Sweetheart even after her year of service comes to an end.

September 2011

INTHEFIELD MAGAZINE 53


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INTHEFIELD MAGAZINE 55


Chrissy Grimmer...

The New Junior Florida Cattlemen’s Association President Chrissy Grimmer has been raising and exhibiting livestock CDE competitions. She was a State Finalist in the Feeder Steer since the age of 7. Her passion, though, has always been with proficiency several years and State Winner in the Feeder Swine her cattle and locally some have been known to call her the “cow proficiency in 2010 and this past June received her State FFA whisperer.” Her parents, Kenny and Michelle Grimmer, said Degree. that she has always had a subtle gift of earning a calf’s trust Considering her love of cattle, she felt it was only natural to and getting it to do what she wants it to. Chrissy attributes this join the Junior Florida Cattlemen’s Association. In addition, she gift to the multiple successes she has had with her cattle over joined the local Hillsborough County chapter of Junior Cattlethe years, starting with her 2002 Grand Champion Commercial men’s, serving as an officer this last year. In October of last year, Heifer “Sugar” and finally with her 2010 Grand Champion Steer Grimmer won a state-wide competition and was named the Flor“Twister” at the Florida Strawberry Festival. Chrissy has also ida Beef Consumer Representative, a position that represents the won multiple Showmanship and Florida Cattlemen’s Association, Herdsman competitions across the Florida Cattlewomen’s Associastate through the years, further tion and Florida Beef Council and demonstrating the bond she develeducates the general public about ops with her cattle. the nutritional benefits of beef. As the cattle Chrissy and The Junior Florida Cattleher brother, Chad, exhibited men’s Association held its annual through the years grew too old to JFCA Cattle Show in August in be exhibited, they would be put Kissimmee. In addition to the catout to pasture. These retired show tle show, the JFCA held its Annual calves are now part of CG Show Meeting. At the meeting, Chrissy Cattle and have produced calves was elected by peers across the that have been shown by Chrissy state as the 2011-2012 President and other exhibitors throughout of the JFCA. She will travel the the years. Chrissy said that she state this next year with the JFCA feels real pride when a calf that officer team promoting the beef Chrissy and her Grand Champion Steer, Twister at the her family produced walks into industry. In addition, the team 2010 Strawberry Festival; Inset: Chrissy and 2002 Grand the ring and does really well for the Champion Commercial Heifer, Sugar will travel to the National Cattleexhibitor who purchased it. men’s Convention in Nashville, TN It’s not just about raising and showing cattle that has kept in February. As President, Chrissy hopes to work with her officer her interest through the years. It’s about the camaraderie with team to grow the membership of the JFCA and to demonstrate her fellow showmen and the relationships that she has forged the importance of today’s youth in the future of the state’s cattle through the years that made it fun. Chrissy is always willing to and agriculture industry. help anyone that asks. She has coached individuals competing Chrissy currently attends Hillsborough Community College against her in showmanship, helped others break calves, and and is a member of the Honors Institute at HCC and Collegiate given grooming tips to fellow exhibitors. She’s even participated FFA. She is working on an AA degree in Vet Sciences. Upon reas an instructor in showmanship and grooming clinics so that she ceipt of her AA degree, she will transfer to University of Florida can help anyone who wants to learn. and aspires to become a mixed-practice veterinarian, working A Plant City High School honors graduate, Chrissy was with small animals, equine and, of course, cattle. She plans to always extremely active in her FFA chapter. She served as an open a practice in Plant City, where she can play an active part in officer every year and participated in numerous leadership and helping future exhibitors with their livestock projects.

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Universit y of Florida Introduces New Strawberr y Patent Sought for ‘FL 05-107’; Trademark to be Filed

by Jim Frankowiak Strawberry industry standards, ‘Strawberry Festival’ and ‘Florida Radiance’, will soon have a new partner, though the new cultivars name is yet to come. Currently known as ‘FL 05-107’ Strawberry, the new strawberry will be released later this year with full commercial availability for the 2012 – 2013 season. Dr. Vance Whitaker, Assistant Professor of Strawberry Breeding and Genetics at the University of Florida/IFAS Gulf Coast Research and Education Center, said a patent has been applied for under the name ‘FL 05 – 107’ and a trademark name for common usage will be filed at a later date. “The name we select for trademark of this new cultivar must work well not only domestically, but in the international marketplace as well,” said Whitaker. This approach – seeking a patent for the cultivar followed by trademark protection for a name – is a new process for UF with respect to strawberry cultivars. The new strawberry was selected by Dr. Craig Chandler in 2005. Dr. Whitaker joined the GCREC faculty as Dr. Chandler’s replacement in 2009 and was given responsibility for management and further testing of the new strawberry. Dr. Chandler continues his association with GCREC as a consultant though he is officially retired. “This new cultivar has been tested over several years in field plots at the GCREC, at the Flower Strawberry Growers Association (FSGA) headquarters in Dover and on several commercial farms,” said Whitaker. Data from these trials have been used to produce detailed information designed to help strawberry growers in west-central Florida obtain optimum performance of ‘FL 05-107’. The introduction of new strawberry cultivars is funded by royalties the University receives from the sale of released varieties. “We also have ongoing support from the FSGA for our tissue culture program, which enables us to introduce new cultivars to growers at a much faster rate,” said Whitaker. The release of the new cultivar also marks a new “team approach” through which GCREC plant pathologists and horticul-

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turists bring their disciplines to bear on the new cultivars. “This provides grower with vital information on production practices and disease management to help assure optimum yields,” said Whitaker. In addition to Whitaker and Chandler, the team included Dr. Bielinski Santos, GCREC Horticulturist, and Center Plant Pathologist Dr. Natalia Peres. The new strawberry “is a short-day plant adapted to annual, winter plasticulture growing systems,” said Whitaker. It is compact and upright with long stems, making the fruit easy to harvest. “It produced cone-shaped fruit that are very uniform in shape throughout the growing season, resulting in few non-marketable fruit,” he added. The new fruit size is intermediate between “Strawberry Festival” and “Florida Radiance” and firmness and shipping quality is also similar to these two varieties. “At some times during the late season, the firmness of FL 05-107’ has exceeded that of “Festival”, offering benefits as end of season temperatures rise,” noted Whitaker. “The external color of the fruit is bright red and develops external color gradually. It has a lower acid content than either Festival or Radiance, giving it a milder, sweeter flavor that improves continually during ripening. It has performed consistently well during taste tests throughout the trial period,” he said. “FL 05-107 planted in early October has performed very well in GCREC field plots as well as in protected culture environments, such as high tunnels,” Whitaker said. Whitaker said expanded trials of the FL 05-107 will take place this coming season and growers have been invited to participate via the Florida Foundation Seed Producers, Inc. Interested commercial growers had until mid September to submit Plant Request Forms. “Additional information regarding the new cultivar’s name and commercial availability for the 2012 - 2013 will be available later this fall,” said Whitaker. Those interest in more information about the new strawberry, should visit http://strawberry.ifas. ufl.edu/breedigpg.htm.

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INTHEFIELD MAGAZINE 59


Preparing for Strawberry Season by Mark Cook Joe Gude of Brandon Farms is a hands-on guy. When I called him to discuss the early preparation for the upcoming strawberry season, Gude told me he needed to call me back. He was on the tractor just getting ready to make a practice bed run. As the boss he is certainly in a position to have a number of employees run the tractors. But that’s not Gude’s way. “I have always been a hands on type of owner,” Gude said. “I love to ride the tractors, load my own and work the fields. I can’t imagine not doing a lot of it myself.” With 300 acres to prep, plow, and plant, Gude can’t do everything and will have to rely on his dedicated employees for help. “I have a great staff and they are really the backbone of this organization. We would have never been able to expand in the way we have without them.” As this article comes off the press (September 15) Gude and his crew will be in the middle of the hardest month of the growing season - prepping the fields. “We will work every day pretty much from the first of September to the first of October,” Gude said. “It is a hard, tough time for all of us but is a necessity.” After the last growing of the spring the fields are planted with a cover crop, which adds and retains nutrients in the soil. In mid-August Gude will disc up the cover crop and the work begins first with the ordering of supplies and the process of getting the equipment set up to do the work. After the ground is cleared, it is leveled by machinery using precise laser GPS guidance systems that make sure it is done to spec. Then the “fun” begins. Starting at daylight the rumble of the diesel tractors hum across the quiet Dover community. Workers show up in multiple cars ready to begin the long hot process of making the beds that will hold the red edible gold that sustains the Plant City community through the winter months. Using the same laser precision satellites that were used in the leveling process, the specifications are locking into the computer unit on the John Deere 7830 tractors. Gude determines where to begin and punches a button that enables the computer to take over the steering of the tractor and the first 300-foot bed is cut. For the next month tractors follow Gude and the machinery will lay the plastic that covers the dirt beds that will prevent weeds from emerging once the berries are planted. Other aspects of the preparation season include testing the wells and irrigation, installing drip tape and making sure the fertilizer will be available once the berries reach the fertile soil. “While it is hard work and time consuming it is enjoyable and I have to be right in the middle of it,” Gude said. “But you

won’t hear me complain. I love it.” The day I visited the farm to take some pictures Gude was excited to show me how the process works. We drove from his house to the equipment barn and Gude fired up a tractor with bedding equipment attached to the back. He insisted I jump in the cab and go for a trial run with him. After he had cut the bed we turned the big tractor around to see the work jut completed. Like an artist who has just finished a painting Gude was jut as proud, looking down the perfectly and symmetrically straight strawberry bed. To be successful in any business there has to be passion, and without a doubt Gude has that part covered. In October the planting of the berries begins and the workforce will double in size. Gude’s starter berry plants come from nurseries across the country and Brandon Farms plants at least four different varieties of strawberries. As the picking season approaches, Gude and his daughters always take to the fields to try and find the first ripe berry. The three celebrate their fortune, but Gude knows one ripe berry is a long way from turning a profit. Weather is a berry farmer’s biggest threat, and Gude knows from December until the last cold front in February, there will be many sleepless nights. “You can’t get too caught up in worrying about it but it does stay on your mind,” Gude said. “The amount of money to plant each acre increases every year and while technology has made protecting the berries easier over the years nothing can protect them all in the event of a major freeze. There is a lot at stake and a lot of peoples livelihood depends on getting these berries to the market.” While the financial reward can be good, some years the ultimate satisfaction comes from seeing the hard work that is put into the farm. Brandon Farm’s berries are marketed under the name Gulf Sweet and are sold all over the United States and as far north as Canada. “We sell to most the major grocery chains across the country,” Gude said. “It’s a real rewarding thought to think someone in Canada, in the middle of January with two foot of snow on the ground, can go to their local retailer and pick up a package of our berries.” “I love being in the produce section of the grocery store and some housewife stops and comments how pretty the berries look. I don’t ever tell them I grow them. I just smile and get satisfaction knowing later that night she will go home and wash and cut the berries and serve them to her family. That is what makes all the hard work worth it.”

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by Ted Campbell, Executive Director, Florida Strawberry Growers Association Although Merrill Lynch may not be so bullish anymore due to our present economic uncertainty, the strawberry farms in the Plant City area are aggressively preparing for a new winter season. The optimism is evidenced by a greater than 10 percent expansion of acreage – much of which employs new freeze protection alternatives or is being developed farther from water use caution areas. This additional acreage helps our community in many ways. Strawberries are one of the most capital-intensive crops, and it costs about $25,000 per acre just to prepare the land. New land development alone cost about $25 million this year. This expansion obviously creates local employment clearing and leveling, excavating drainage systems, creating tailwater recovery systems, installing pumps and underground irrigation lines, as well as all the legal, permitting, financing, and engineering work surrounding the process. In many cases, removal of unproductive citrus groves helps reduce the potential for disease migration to viable trees in neighboring groves. At the same time such crop conversion increases our county’s tax revenue. That’s right - the farm pays taxes based on crop value, so strawberries pay a higher tax rate than citrus or pasture land. Turning marginally productive land into strawberry farms also infuses a lot of other cash into this community beyond the initial land development. By October about 11,000 acres in our immediate area will plant strawberries for this winter’s season – at an additional expense of about $10,000 per acre. That’s another $110 million dollars being spent in this community over the next two months - just to put the crop in the ground. And that expense recurs (and usually increases) every year! Capital equipment, plastic, chemicals, tractor tires, drip irrigation tape, fuel, insurance, and accounting services – the local goods and services are endless. Farming is one of those high-risk businesses where almost all of your expenses occur many months before you see any revenue at all. And don’t overlook all the related local jobs making boxes and plastic containers, printing labels, servicing all those air conditioning units and trucks, and much more work that must be done in advance of the season.

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Planting begins late in September or early October, and yes, every plant must be placed in the ground by hand - 18,000 or more per acre. That’s about 200 million strawberry plants no wonder we’re the Winter Strawberry Capital of the World! And hand planting is just the beginning. When harvest begins around Thanksgiving, each of those 200 million plants must be hand picked every three days for the entire four-month season. That’s the equivalent of over 400 million plants being hand picked every week until April! During normal warm weather, plants continuously produce new blooms, which mature in about 35 days - making continual timely harvesting essential. Skilled pickers must select only the ripe fruit on each pass, place it properly in the retail package, and remove any diseased or low-grade fruit from the field. How many people does it take to pick 400 million strawberry plants a week? Local farms employ over 16,000 workers with a total season payroll of over $165 million. How many industries in Plant City have that kind of payroll? Actually half the cost of strawberries is labor! But also remember, these workers are employed for six months or more and therefore live in our community much of the year. That obviously means they spend a good portion of that income locally on food, fuel, clothing, and other goods and services – providing even greater financial benefits to area businesses. And for every worker in the strawberry field, there are at least three domestic jobs upstream and downstream which are dependent on our farm production. That’s 64,000 jobs that rely on our local strawberry industry! And every one of those jobs generates tax revenue and other benefits to our struggling economy. The strawberry industry is proud to play such an important role in helping the economy of the Plant City area grow while less fortunate areas are experiencing economic challenges. We are blessed to have the combination of ideal soil, a nearly perfect winter microclimate, and the support of this marvelous community for well over 100 years. God bless the farmers!

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INTHEFIELD MAGAZINE 63


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INTHEFIELD MAGAZINE 67


Plant City Chamber of Commerce

Salutes Agriculture by Al Berry photos by Ron O’Connor

The Plant City Chamber of Commerce/Farm Credit of Central Florida Annual Salute to Agriculture Breakfast was held at the ballroom of the Red Rose Inn and Suites in Plant City, August 10. This event honors area farmers and agriculture supporters in Hillsborough County. After the breakfast buffet, John Modrow, Area 5, FFA State Vice President gave the invocation, followed by the Pledge of Allegiance given by Kelsey Boseman, district FFA Secretary and Strawberry Crest High School FFA President. MC Nate Kilton recognized the Agriculture Committee consisting of Debbie Simpson, Farm Credit of Central Florida, Jim Jeffries, retired Hillsborough County Agribusiness Supervisor, Dan Walden, Florida Strawberry Festival Director, Hugh Gramling, Executive Director of the Tampa Bay Wholesale Growers Association, Stephen Gran, Hillsborough County Ag Industry Development Program, Wesley Joyner, First Community Bank, and Pam Walden, Supervisor of Agribusiness for Hillsborough County Hosting the Ag Awards presentation was Reggie Holt President and CEO of Farm Credit of Central Florida. Tony Lopez, Jr. presented the “Young Agriculturist of the Year” to Clifford J. Gude, Jr, better known as “Joey.” Joey started growing strawberries when he married the late Trenda Jones, the daughter of the late Eddie Jones. Now, 22 years later, he is farming over 300 acres, and is very involved in community affairs, which include the Florida Strawberry Festival, Hillsborough County Fair, and with local war veterans. Pam Walden made the presentation of the “Ag Educator of the Year” to Susan Mayo, Ag instructor and Career Technical instructor at Strawberry Crest High School. Susan is going on 22 years of teaching middle and high school agriculture. Since educating her principal and students about agriculture and the FFA, Strawberry Crest has had back-toback Agriculture Issues state winning teams. This year they will compete on the national level. Her guidance has led Strawberry Crest to be a national finalist

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in Risk Management, and has taken their Ornamental Horticulture Demonstration team, as well as their Parliamentary Procedure team to the state level. Paul Davis, general manager of the Florida Strawberry Festival, received the “2011 Supporter of Youth in Agriculture” award. Since becoming manager of the Strawberry Festival, Paul has worked to increase FFA scholarships, and consistently gives add-ons to numerous students showing at the Festival. Davis believes that our youth are our most precious resource and encourages education through agricultural organizations as it provides students with the value of hard work and dedication as well as investment in their future. Dan Walden presented Paul Davis’ with this award. Wesley presented the “Agri-Business of the Year” to Patterson Companies. Founded in 1985, when they were know as Sam Patterson Truck Brokers, they now have 15 regional offices and over 100 employees. The current President and CEO is Steve Howard who assumed his position with the company in 2006. They have shown their appreciation for the Plant City Ag market by their support in many different areas such as; Chamber of Commerce, Florida Strawberry Growers Association, Southeastern Produce Council, Redlands Christian Migrant Association, South Florida Baptist Hospital and many others. The “Agriculturist of the Year” went to Carl and Dee Dee Grooms. While making the presentation, Stephen Gran emphasized that they were instrumental in the creation of the Florida Strawberry Growers Association in 1982. Carl and Dee Dee are striving to keep a legacy of farming alive for their children and grandchildren. Each year they help local 4H Clubs with a U-Pick scholarship fundraiser on their farm. Dee Dee is known for marketing Florida strawberries with her recipes and educating others through her travels, farm tours and daily farm work. The Plant City Chamber’s Salute to Agriculture Breakfast is a joint venture between the Chamber and Farm Credit of Central Florida.

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Wow! Another year has passed and in celebration of our Triumphs, Challenges, Growth and Future, we, the “Eastern Region Team,” celebrated this year’s annual meeting in Long Boat Key, FL. We have brought back great memories, more knowledge and a better understanding of where we stand as a company. We learned a lot about ourselves and our company and how we are tremendously blessed to be able to work for a company that allows us to get out of the office and gives us an opportunity to know ourselves and one another as a team in a beachfront atmosphere. A great big “Thanks” goes to our company and also a huge “Thank You” goes to the Hilton Long Boat Key Staff. Brain Teaser: How do you get an elephant in the refrigerator?

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INTHEFIELD MAGAZINE 69


Hawkins Corner Nursery a Century Pioneer Farm

Martha Sue Hawkins Skinner, her husband Richard and their sons Mark and Ken received a visit from Florida Agriculture Commissioner Adam Putnam on August 25. He was there to present them with the Century Pioneer Family Farm, given to families who have maintained at least 100 years of continuous family farm ownership. Hawkins Corner Nursery is a family owned and operated business located in the at 3611 James L. Redman Parkway in Plant City. The Century Pioneer Family Farm Program was initiated in 1985 by the Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services. In addition to receiving a certificate, Century Pioneer Family Farms also receive a sign that can be posted on the property denoting its significance. For more information on the Century Pioneer Family Farm Program visit the Florida Department of Agriculture Web site at www.florida-agriculture.com .

Florida Strawberry Festival Makes Cover of Florida Florida Strawberry Festival. The pig was It appears that Plant City’s livestock Federation of originally named Louise (in honor of his can be seen anywhere from the show great grandmother who passed away the ring to the cover of a magazine. Wheezer Fairs Directory year before), however, Louise frequently Walls, the pretty porker from the 2011 Florida Strawberry Festival, is now famous as she graces the cover of the Florida Federation of Fairs “Fairs and Expo” Directory. Each year, the Florida Federation of Fairs encourages its members to submit photographs from their annual event that depict what their fair is all about. Here at the Florida Strawberry Festival we find our youth to be our most valuable resource and strive to provide them with resources to invest in their future. At the 76th annual event, local agriculture students and their swine were given a chance to shine. Students spent many months of hard work, dedication, and unconditional love raising their precious pigs. Wheezer, the playful piggy, and her owner Shane are a wonderful example of how the Festival strives to enrich the lives of its youth. Shane Walls was a 13-year-old eighth grader at Turkey Creek Middle School during the 2010-11 school year, when he showed his 305 lb. pig Wheezer, at the

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made wheezing sounds, thus came the nickname “Wheezer.” Shane is now starting his freshman year at Durant High School. He has been a member of the FFA since the sixth grade and has been fortunate enough to have been drawn to show a Festival pig every year for the past three years. Shane will be turning in his 2012 Strawberry Festival pig application soon, and if his luck continues, he looks forward to showing again next March. The Florida Strawberry Festival would like to congratulate Shane on his statewide recognition with the Florida Federation of Fairs. We are looking forward to another exciting year ahead as we will be “Growing Sweet Memories” at the 77th Annual Florida Strawberry Festival, March 1 – March 11, 2012. For more information on all the Florida Strawberry Festival events, log on to www.flstrawberryfestival.com or call the main office at 813-752-9194.

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HCC’s Open House with Ken Atwater, HCC District President by: Ginny Mink Many of us ascribe to the “If it’s free it’s for me,” motto of life particularly in these rather harrowing economic times. No doubt the concept of “free” is made even more appealing, at least to people in Plant City, when it’s attached to Johnson’s Barbeque. Yes, you read that correctly, free Johnson’s Barbeque! Certainly a good deal of you, are immediately asking, “When and where?” Hillsborough Community College’s (HCC’s) Plant City campus is hosting an open house and chance to meet the new HCC District President, Ken Atwater. The event will be held on October 22 from 10 am to 1 pm. This is a chance, according to the Advisory Council Chair, Ed Verner, to “come and see the campus that makes Plant City a college town. Families with teenaged children can come and begin the process of making that big college decision. Employers can sample the academic and workforce training programs offered at the campus.” (Don’t forget, free Johnson’s Barbeque.) Perhaps you are wondering how all this came about? Well, Fred Johnson was in attendance at “Atwater’s combined Inauguration and Presidential Showcase event in March at Tampa’s Hyatt Regency, and when they met, Johnson made the offer.” Like any barbeque enjoying human being, especially one who has had the distinct pleasure of eating at Fred’s Market Restaurant, Atwater “knew the value of Johnson’s offer as soon as he heard it and accepted immediately.” Felix Haynes, the Plant City campus President has been assigned to plan the event. Since he “had just organized a new, 50 member Community Advisory Council made up of a crosssection of Plant City citizens, (he) asked the Council to take on the event as their first project.” Haynes says, “We’re inviting the whole town to come to the Trinkle Center on Saturday, October 22, from 10-1 to enjoy Johnson’s Barbeque, to meet Ken Atwater, and to see the campus and its academic programs. Folks who want to make a day of it can go first to the Plant City Chamber’s Plantacious Event, which starts at 7 am, and then come on over to HCC.” The first hour and a half will allow visitors to interact with faculty and staff at over a dozen booths. “Some booths will offer live demonstrations of typical classes. HCC alumni, who

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have taken one course at the college, will be asked to sign in at the Alumni Booth. The first 400 alumni will receive a free HCC lapel pin. A continuous feed slide show with pictures of campus students and activities since its founding in 1970 will run all day in the building and a Memory Lane containing campus pictures loaned by Plant City’s own Photo Archives and History Center will be available for viewing.” While parents are getting the chance to talk to the campus representatives their children can visit the interspersed face and mask painting booths there as well. In addition, patrons can tour the campus and check out the $1.5 million worth of renovations. Part of that $1.5 million was spent on the “Environmental Science, Biology, Veterinary Technology, Advanced Water Treatment, and Sprinklefitting laboratories,” as well as the teaching gardens and greenhouses that HCC shares with UF as part of their partnership. As many people know, the Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences (IFAS) of UF offers classes on the HCC Plant City campus. However, the value of this program may not be completely understood by local residents. According to Jack Payne, the Senior Vice President for Agriculture and Natural Resources at UF, “IFAS research has resulted in hundreds of new plant cultivars and inventions. Our folic acid research helped bring about significant drops in neural tube birth defects around the globe, such as spina bifida. We’ve patented biofuel-production technology and our automated weather network helps reduce irrigation by an average 41.6 billion gallons each year.” He adds, “One thing is for sure, we’re here to make Florida better. You can expect great things from IFAS.” Obviously we can expect great things from HCC as well! Saturday’s event looks to be an exciting opportunity to really get to know HCC and its UF partnership (just look for their booth). “At 11:30 all booths will close and Dr. Atwater will speak for a few minutes. After the program the food line will be opened and everyone will be able to enjoy Johnson’s Barbeque.” Don’t forget to take the opportunity to shop the Bookstore Booth for HCC monogrammed items, including t-shirts. This is an awesome chance to enjoy food, fun and fellowship, so come on out!

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Muscadine Grapes

by Sandy Kaster, M.S. Clinical Medicine, B.S. Nutrition Science

Fresh Florida muscadine and bunch grapes are in their peak season right now. These juicy, sweet-tart, bite-sized berries are good for eating raw, as well as making wine or jam. Other popular uses include grape jelly in peanut butter sandwiches, raisins, and grape juice. According to the University of Florida Extension Office, muscadine grapes are native to Florida and the southeastern U.S. has the greatest genetic diversity of grapes in the world. Additionally, Florida grapes produce millions of dollars in revenue. Bunch grapes have fewer chromosomes and are harvested in large clusters of up to 100 grapes. Muscadine grapes have more chromosomes and produce fruit in clusters of two to ten berries. Muscadine varieties are also more disease-resistant, particularly to Pierce’s disease. Florida’s wineries are growing in number, and many use the muscadine grape for both red and white wines.

Nutritional Profile

This sweet, juicy fruit is considered a very good source of vitamin C, and a good source of vitamin A, dietary fiber, riboflavin, and potassium. The outer peel is entirely edible and contains most of the fiber in the fruit. According to the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) National Nutrient Database for Standard Reference, one cup of fresh grapes (92 g) contains 61.6 calories, 0.58 g of protein, 0.32 g of fat, 61.6 g of carbohydrate, and 2.9 g of fiber. It also provides 33% of the Daily Recommended Value (% DV) for manganese, 6.1% for Vitamin C, 5.3% for thiamin, 5% for potassium, and 5% for niacin.

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Florida grapes are bursting with antioxidants including vitamin C, manganese, carotenoids, resveratrol, and other phytonutrients. The highest concentration of these beneficial compounds is found in the skin and seeds, and muscadine grapes may have more than other grape varieties. Antioxidants help protect the body’s cell membranes from harmful free radical damage and lower markers of oxidative stress. Very importantly, the antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties of grapes offer protection against cancer. Resveratrol is a special phytonutrient that is believed to play a role in longevity. This compound has been positively linked to

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inhibiting cancer, heart disease, and viral infections. Found in muscadine and other grape varieties, resveratrol may also have anti-microbial and anti-hypertensive properties. Antioxidants protect cell membranes from potential oxygen damage and inflammation. This decreases the risk for atherosclerosis and heart disease. Grapes, as well as grape juice and red wine, have been shown to play a role in reducing high blood pressure, reducing total and LDL cholesterol levels, decrease inflammation, and decrease clumping of platelets (which may help prevent blood clots). Grapes are considered an excellent source of manganese, an antioxidant that plays many important roles in the body. It helps keep bones strong, maintain normal blood sugar levels and proper functioning of the thyroid gland. Manganese also helps the body utilize other nutrients such as vitamin C, thiamin, choline, and biotin.

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How to Select and Store Choose plump, firm grapes that feel heavy for their size and are still attached to the stem. Look for richly colored skin that is free of blemishes. Store grapes in a shallow container in the refrigerator. Rinse under cool running water before eating or preparing.

How to enjoy Muscadine grapes are delicious and juicy eaten out of hand. They can be juiced or cooked into jelly or jam. Add grapes to cereal, yogurt, or salad or use them to garnish and top cakes and desserts. Enjoy Florida’s delicious grapes today. In every juicy, sweettart bite is a load of great nutrition. For a list of u-pick and wineries, go to Florida Grape Growers’ Association: www.fgga. org/index.html.

Selected References http://www.whfoods.com http://edis.ifas.ufl.edu/ag208 http://www.fgga.org/index.html http://www.fruitsandveggiesmorematters.org

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September 2011

INTHEFIELD MAGAZINE 75


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Dry Creek, The Time Bandit

by Dry Creek America’s First Frontier creator Les Mc Dowell photos by Linda Constant

In the middle of August Dry Creek got into production. We are filming the second season that will run nation wide on Dish Network, Channel 240 and Direct TV, channel 608, on Blue Highway TV in major cities across America and on Verizon. The first episode is called The Time Bandit. It deals with how time robs us. Dry Creek takes place in the 1880s but its almost scary how our forefathers went through many of todays same trying times. It brings me to a conversation I had with an Amish man many years ago. He said, “things change but people don’t.” Back to The Time Bandit episode, it looks at the life of the railroad President of Dry Creek who gets fired because a younger man will do the work for less. As the writer of Dry Creek this story was really my story. Living my life in today’s financial times as a baby boomer, I was in the railroad presidents boots. Radio was my profession but they didn’t want me anymore. I was to young to retire and to old to hire.

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In our Time Bandit episode the railroad President defines his job as who he is. With so many years broadcasting on the radio I also looked at my job on morning radio as who I was. I find in today’s present unemployment crises millions of folks are going through the same thing. There is a happy ending to our story. The ex railroad president reinvents himself and does what he always wanted to do. As for Les McDowell, well I did the same thing. I’m filming episodes of Dry Creek and have a new family, My Dry Creek family. I’ve learned a lot from this episode of Dry Creek. There is a time bandit loose. I see him every time I look in the mirror. Then I remember what dad always said, “Enjoy every second of your life. Don’t let time steal it from you.” So long for now, You’ll find me in Dry Creek.......everybody knows where Dry Creek is, cause it’s inside each and every one of us.

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INTHEFIELD MAGAZINE 77


PERSONAL TRAINING STUDIO I HATE MY TRAINER! (but love the results)

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INTHEFIELD MAGAZINE 79


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813 Continued from page 11 97 Country is helping sponsor the event and Pepsi is making signs for them. In fact, the 97 Country Road Show will be there on opening day and prior to that they’re holding a “listener appreciation dinner on September 29.” This is gonna be big, people, and you definitely don’t want to miss it. After all, when are you going to get another opportunity to walk through a seven to eight foot high corn maze? Ted said, “The corn maze is kinda exciting, kinda neat. It’s the first in Polk County and might be the first in Central Florida.” Currently there are only six corn mazes in the entire state. Ted added, “The only problem with the maze is the weather because it’s farming. Any time you farm you’re at nature’s mercy, but generally October is a drier month.” Given the economy, “the sod industry tanked,” said Donna, and since that’s a main source of income for the Smiths and the four families living off the farm, they’ve had to get really creative to keep everybody working. So, while you’re at their October shindig, make sure you venture onto the hayride there. The hayride will take you “through the different sods, the olive trees and millet field.” Yes, olive trees, yet another ingenious “gamble” the Smiths are participating in. They planted the olive trees in June but, “like blueberries, it takes three years before they produce.” Ted explains that their purpose is “for extra virgin olive oil. We’re not sure if they’re gonna work or not because there’s no other groves around,” the area. Yet, they went ahead and planted five acres of about 4,000 trees “on a trellis system. They’ll be in a hedge when mature.” According to Donna, “We did all the work by hand. We had to stick the bamboo stakes in by hand, that’s 4,000 bamboo stakes! We tied the trellis up with little wires by hand. We did our own irrigation and had to poke the holes in by hand. It was a lot of work!” Ultimately they planted three different kinds, two of which are “air pollinators so they don’t need bees.” Olive trees are yet another part of ancient human history.

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Good thing the Smiths like stuff that gives us the opportunity to learn something. Probably many of us first learned about olive trees in Sunday school because they are very much an Old Testament plant. Aside from Scriptural references, the truth is that “man has been cultivating the olive tree for over 8,000 years. Olive branches figure heavily in many religions, as they did in the cultures of ancient Greece and Rome throughout the Mediterranean. Olives are the world’s most important oil-producing crop and have been since 6000 BC. So important is the olive that, in early Greek and Hebrew cultures, it was a capital crime to destroy an olive tree, even one owned by an enemy. The first olive trees in Florida were planted at New Smyrna in 1770, just one year after the first olive plantings in California were made at Mission San Diego. In the U.S., there are oil-producing olive groves in California, Arizona, Texas and Florida (and now there’s one in Lakeland). They (the olive trees) can live a thousand years or longer,” (www.olivetreegrowers.com). So, what do corn mazes and olive trees have in common? You can find them both on the Smiths’ farm. Make sure you check it out!

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September 2011

INTHEFIELD MAGAZINE 81


If you are a Farmer or Rancher - CALL US. Hometown Attorneys Working for You

Dear In the Field Readers, It’s crazy how fast time can fly. I can’t tell you enough how grateful that I am to be able to serve the 15,000 Florida FFA members. As we travel from city to city I am finding that you have to enjoy the little things in life if you want to stay sane in life and in the FFA program. I can’t tell you enough the importance of living in the now. We always find ourselves looking to the future and not enjoying what we are doing now. Set goals to keep yourself on track and this year will surly be one to remember. The International Leadership Seminar for State Officers (ILSSO) is a once in a lifetime opportunity that is organized by the National FFA Global Programs. The other members of my team and I are embarking in January on a trip to China. This opportunity will allow me to learn about agriculture on a global scale and become more culturally aware of the diversity in worldwide agriculture. While in China we will be able to travel to cattle farms where they raise over 80,000 head of cattle for market and

The Plant City Garden Club is hosting its third GardenFest on September 24. Looking for ideas on what to plant this fall? Need to purchase plants for your flower beds? You will not want to miss the third annual GardenFest for Plant City. The event will be from 9:00 A.M. to 3:00 P.M. at the Train Depot, 102 N. Palmer Street, Plant City. There will be a host of vendors offering a variety of plants from orchids to trees and much more, garden art and accessories for your gardens and outdoor living areas. This free to the public event will feature Local vendors such

attend Northwest A&F University, one of China’s greatest agricultural colleges. The Bunge Plant is where we will be able to learn about the grains and oils that are produced all across China. This plus much more will go on while we are in China for two weeks. This opportunity for a trip to china wouldn’t be possible without people like you in our community. Supporters like you allow the state officers to attend this conference to gain knowledge on agriculture at a global scale. If you could help me in any way to attend this experience I would greatly appreciate it. Please contact me at john.modrow@flaffa.org. I thank you in advance for your support!

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as Tropical Gardens, Sunshine Nursery, The Garden and many more, as well as speakers with timely tips for the fall gardening season. The Plant City Daybreak Rotary Club will be on hand with hamburgers and hot dogs for sale. “This event has been very popular the past two years. We are pleased to have added new vendors for greater variety of plants. You will not want to miss it,” said Eileen Reed, Plant City Garden Club President.

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INTHEFIELD MAGAZINE 83


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Strawberry Crest FFA Receives National Ranking

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different activities. FFA members visited Shriner’s Hospital for Children, where they delivered teddy bears to patients. On a more local scale the members participated in a canned food drive for Plant City. Members collected canned foods and donated them to the Plant City Food Bank. Each of these programs assisted the community while teaching each member leadership skills and built career skills. Many fundraiser were held throughout the year to raise money for Relay for Life. For chapter and student development, SCHS FFA held a Leadership Lock In, started many public relations campaigns, started Doggie day-care, a course hosted by Strawberry Crest Vet classes so teacher’s can bring their pets for a day of dog pampering and grooming. Students also attended Ag on the Hill in Tallahassee to learn about Florida government and participated in Ag Literacy Day. FFA members and officers attended many leadership events throughout the state and beyond. These events were just a few of the many things that aided in earning the three star chapter award.

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84 INTHEFIELD MAGAZINE

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Jamee Townsend was named the State Star FFA Finalist at FFA State Convention on Thursday, June 16, 2011. Her supervised agriculture experience project consisted of a show heifer, show steer, citrus, fruit and vegetable production. Throughout the years Jamee increased responsibilities on the family farm such as working in the strawberry fields, stirring poles for beans and freeze protection for the cold winter night. Jamee is a very active young lady. Besides being an officer and leader in the FFA, Jamee plays varsity volleyball for SCHS, club volleyball, which takes her all over the state and even around the country, and was selected 2011 SCHS Calendar Girl. She also takes time out of her busy days to involve herself in community service activities. The Florida FFA Association recently selected 20 student members as finalists in the “Stars over Florida” award recognition program. More than 200 applicants were considered during the selection process. The Stars recognition program recognizes students with outstanding Supervised Agricultural Experience (SAE) programs in six different categories. Each candidate was interviewed by a team of FFA, industry and Agriculture Education representatives to determine the Star Finalist in each area for her outstanding accomplishments in FFA and the community.

The National FFA Organization recently selected, from a pool of more than 650 candidates nationwide, the Strawberry Crest FFA Chapter of Dover as a 3 Star winner in the National FFA Chapter Award program. The FFA Chapter has been invited to attend the 84th National FFA Convention in Indianapolis, October 20, where they will be recognized for this honor. In just the second year of its FFA charter, Strawberry Crest FFA will be receiving the National Three Star Chapter Award for their outstanding achievements in chapter development, student development, and community development. The three-star rating is the highest level of accomplishment a chapter may achieve. This award program is sponsored by John Deere as a special project of the National FFA Chapter program and recognizes FFA Chapters for developing and conducting a detailed Program of Activities. Each activity provides opportunities for members to excel in one of three areas: student, chapter, or community development. Every year, chapters are recognized as having earned a one, two, or three-star rating on their application. Strawberry Crest FFA community service included many

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INTHEFIELD MAGAZINE 85


Durant High School at the State FFA Convention

Durant FFA Chapter Receives National Ranking The National FFA Organization recently selected, from a pool of more than 650 candidates nationwide, the Durant Senior FFA Chapter as a 3-star winner in the National FFA Chapter Award program. The chapter members have been invited to attend the 84th National FFA Convention in Indianapolis, October 19-22, where they will be recognized for this honor. The award program is sponsored by John Deere as a special project of the National FFA Foundation. The National FFA Chapter Award program recognizes FFA chapters for developing and conducting a detailed Program of Activities. Each activity provides opportunities for members to excel in one of the three areas: student, chapter, or community development. Every year, chapters are recognized as having earned a one, two or three-star rating on their application. The three-star rating is the highest level of accomplishment a chapter may achieve. The Durant FFA Chapter members and Advisors would like to thank their school and community for helping make this award possible.

Durant FFA “Tools for School” The Durant FFA Chapter officers started the school year off with their first community project by filling and donating 20 backpacks to a local elementary school. The FFA officers raised money to purchase the backpacks and the supplies, which included paper, crayons, pencils, glue and rulers. The officers enjoyed delivering the school supplies to Trapnell Elementary and presenting them to the school’s Principal, Mr. Black. He was very appreciative of the student’s efforts and said he knew the children would be surprised to receive such a nice gift to start the school year off right. The Durant FFA officers hope to hold more fund raising efforts during the year so they can expand their “tools for school” project for next year.

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INTHEFIELD MAGAZINE 87


A Closer Look: Giant Whip Scorpion

A Closer Look: Giant Whip Scorpion (Mastigoproctus Giganteus Giganteus) By Sean Green

photo by Justin Overholt

One of my earliest recollections of discovering the enchantment of insects was on a Boy Scout camping trip. No more than 12 years old, and always anxious to explore, I agreed to race my troop mates to a small tower of granite boulders that overlooked our campsite to explore a little. Fallen pine trees scattered the perimeter of the boulders making it easy to imagine an ancient fortress that fell at the hands of forgotten beasts. These pines that once stood as sentinels over the desert valley now lay peacefully at rest, blanketed with lush green moss under a shroud of younger forest. The bark of the old log was cool to the touch, even in the heat of a summer’s day and fragile enough to collapse with little more than a nudge. Rolling a section of the log to the side exposed an astonishing creature. Its Giant Whip Scorpion head looked like some of the larger spiders I had seen in the canyons of California, but this was no spider. It had large scorpion like pincers that drew our attention first, but this one did not have the characteristic stinger of a scorpion, I would have recognized that. This critters abdomen looked more like that of a termite from which a long needlelike tail protruded. Although intimidating, I wanted to find out what this thing was, so I carefully tickled it into my sierra cup and covered it with a neckerchief and eagerly raced back to the scoutmaster to identify this beast. The only whip scorpion found in the United States is the giant whip scorpion, Mastigoproctus giganteus giganteus, also known as the ‘vinegaroon’. Both common names describe its distinctive whip like tail from which it sprays highly concentrated acetic acid (85%), almost five times the concentration of acetic acid found in the strongest of vinegars. Vinegaroons were one of the first animals to pioneer the development of chemical ecology in the Carboniferous period about 350 million years ago and to this date produce the highest concentration of acid found in any known biochemical defense response. Worldwide, whip scorpions can be found in the tropics and subtropics, but are more predominant in dessert environments. Our species, Mastigoproctus giganteus, can also be found in grassland, scrub, pine forests and barrier islands of the southern United States and Mexico. Florida’s

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rainy season will keep this species active on our sandy soils until about November when the drier periods will force them underground. Whip scorpions find refuge under logs, rocks, or other dark cool places during the day and come out at night to hunt other insects such as termites, slugs, crickets, and they are especially fond of our unsavory Florida woods roach Eurycotis floridensis, better known as the palmetto bug. Don’t let the whip scorpions intimating appearance keep you from appreciating this insect. They are one of the safest and most fascinating insects you are likely to find and typically live seven or more years. They are slow to develop, after hatching the young attach themselves to top of their mother and remain for one molting period of about a month, thereafter molting only once per year for the next three years. During the first molting period, the mother captures prey and shares food with the young in an underground maternal den. Once the young molt, they leave their maternal den and the mother’s life cycle is complete. Whip scorpions do not have venom, nor do they have any real means of inflicting a serious bite wound. The large pincers are used for grasping and crushing prey and are unlikely to cause more damage that a crawfish. The front legs grow very long and are used to find their way around in the dark functioning much like a cats whiskers, but are also used to keep predators at a safe distance. Although this species is abundant, it is not an easy find. I was very lucky to find one during the day. Looking for them at night is not any easier. They are not attracted to light like many other insects. Unlike true scorpions, whip scorpions do not glow under UV light and they are nearly impossible to see even in low light. The reclusive nature of this species makes it a rare find and consequently has limited our knowledge of its biology. Any opportunity to study this species should be cherished, field study for this species is a challenge even for professional entomologists. Should you find one and decide to keep it, I encourage you to gather as much information as possible to keep it healthy in captivity and contribute to the body of knowledge we already have. Finding such insects is a fringe benefit of Florida living.

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Sarah Holt2011 813-759-6909 September INTHEFIELD MAGAZINE 89


Naturally Amazing Activities VINEGAR by Sean Green

This month’s article on the Whip Scorpion highlighted a powerful natural compound, acetic acid, the primary ingredient in household vinegar. Household vinegar is watered down acetic acid, but even in its watered down state it can do some pretty amazing things. This month we have listed some of the many cool things that can be done with vinegar. The most important thing to remember is that vinegar is an acid, and can be harmful if used carelessly. Please conduct these activities with a responsible adult.

Rubber Chicken Bones:

Vinegar is considered a mild acid, but it is strong enough to dissolve away the calcium in the bone. Once the calcium is dissolved, there is nothing to keep the bone hard - all that is left is the soft bone tissue. With some effort you can really get the bone to bend. Like our bones, chicken bones have a mineral called calcium in them to make them hard. Now you know why your mom is always trying to get you to drink milk - the calcium in milk goes to our bones to make our bones stronger.

Naked Eggs:

Eggs shells are made of calcium carbonate, the same reaction that makes the chicken bone like rubber will strip the egg shell off a chicken egg leaving only the internal membrane of the egg. The acetic acid in vinegar separates the calcium from the carbonate in the eggshell. The calcium floats around without anything to connect to and the carbonate makes the bubbles you see, (carbon dioxide). Fill a bowl with enough vinegar to cover raw eggs. You will notice bubbles coming from the egg. This is the beginning of the reaction. It’s actually the carbon dioxide being released that is causing the bubbles. Cover the container and store the eggs in the refrigerator overnight. Over a 24 hour period you will notice the shell has begun to dissolve. Carefully dump the old vinegar and pour in fresh vinegar for another 24 hr period, repeating the process until the entire eggshell has dissolved.

Sunburn damage is a chemical process that continues long after you’re out of the sun. It’s best to avoid the damage, but if you get sunburned, soak in warm tub with a few cups of vinegar to help soothe the sunburn. You can also dab (not rub) vinegar directly to the sunburn.

Wart Removal:

Vinegar does not kill human papilloma virus (HPV), the virus that causes warts, but the acetic acid in the vinegar will break down the skin weakened by the virus causing the wart itself to fall away from the healthy skin. The fastest method is to soak a small cotton ball in vinegar and adhere to the wart with a band aid each night until the wart and its core fall away. There are literally hundreds of uses for vinegar ranging from simple cleaning techniques to profound health benefits. Easily found with an Internet search, vinegar can rocket empty soda bottles into the air and increasingly rocket society into an awareness that is sometimes forgotten or ignored as our contemporary technology hurdles us farther away from the wisdom we gained when our existence was closer to nature. I have only mentioned a few things that are not so commonly known and encourage you to discover some interesting facts on your own, all the while keeping in mind that a critter not much bigger than your thumb has evolved to master the use of acetic acid for its own purpose, we would do well to master the use of what is naturally abundant as the rest of nature has.

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It’s not just an old wives tale. Vinegar really does relieve sunburn pain and damage. Scientists are only beginning to understand why it works. Research has demonstrated that vinegar acts as a local NSAID (nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drug) similar to Advil or Motrin and not only helps the pain, but also prevents the sunburn from progressing to further damage.

September 2011

813.752.0189

Deliveries

Sunburn Relief:

90 INTHEFIELD MAGAZINE

• Brake service & installation • Diesel lube, oil & filter • Power unit exhaust repair • Interstate Battery dealer • BG Transmission Flush • Tractor exhaust repair • A/C service & repair

www.NormSapp.com

www.InTheFieldMagazine.com

813-393-8959

www.InTheFieldMagazine.com

September 2011

INTHEFIELD MAGAZINE 91


C L A S S I F I E D S BLUE BERRY PLANTS 25 gallon producing plants, quantity discounts $18 each, extra containers available can deliver. 813-967-5327

SEEDWAY KNOWLEDGE you can trust

LAZOR straightneck Smooth, firm fruit and sturdy neck promotes easy handling. Attractive, glossy appearance. 42 days. IR: ZYMV.

(813) 650-8448

WE SUPPORT AGRICULTURE

SPINELESS KING  green zucchini

Dixie Chopper X2002 Quad Loop zero turn mower. 50” cut, good working condition. $3500.00. Bolens G154 diesel tractor. 16hp, 4x4, 3pt lift, pto. Runs good. $2495.00. Call Alvie 813-759-8722

For Sale or Lease 2.66 Acre Nursery N. Lakeland with 1,000 sq ft frame house, 2 sheds, irrigation throughout. Call Bruce 863698-0019

RUBBER MULCH All colors, buy 10 bags, get one FREE! $8.99 a bag. Call Ted 813-752-3378

NEW HOLLAND TC29 tractor loader 29 pto hp, 268hrs. $13,000 (UT6406) Ask for David 813-623-3673

KUBOTA L275 With shuttle shift • Ready to work! $3,500. Call 813-759-8722 DBL INSULATED Thermo Pane. Starting at $55.00 Call Ted 813-752-3378 SURPLUS WINDOWS DOUBLE INSULATED Starting at $55.00 • Call Ted 813-752-3378

Hillsborough’s Growing Businesses Also offering Sylvester Palms (call for pricing)

As always $99 Palms

(Any Size, Queen & Washingonia)

(813) 215-5544

www.jonandrosiestreefarm.com Supply of fertilizer free with each tree purchase

MidState Tractor Parts, Inc.

T1LL 4X8 sheet B-grade $14.95. Call Ted 813-752-3378 1984 KUBOTA B6200 2 wd, w/4 ft. Finish Mower. $3,000 • 863-698-2967

813-752-8010

info@midstatetractorparts.com www.InTheFieldMagazine.com

Contributing writer Write about events in your community. Immediate openings in Hillsborough and Polk Counties. Paid per article. Responsibilities include covering community events and taking pictures. Email your resume to sarah@inthefieldmagazine.com

Kubota L2600 27hp, 2wd, 2334 hours $2,750. Call Alvie 813-759-8722 BOLENS G154Diesel TRACTOR 15hp, 4x4, 3pt. lift. $2,500 Call Alvie 813-7598722

2003 MASSEY FERGUSON 4355 2wd, 85 pto hp, shuttle shift. $11,500. Call Alvie 813-759-8722

KUBOTA B5200 TRACTOR 2wd, 13hp diesel. $1,950. Call Alvie 813-759-8722

BLAISVILLE GEORGIA MLS#191458 Prepare to love this well kept 2 bdrm. cabin with a Seasonal mtn. view. This enticing 1-1/2 story provides gas Fireplace. Loft, wood flooring, main-level laundry. Central air, Ceiling fans. Nottley River privileges, covered porch, simple, no-fuss landscape. Fishing. Call Jane Baer w/ Jane Baer Realty. 1-800820-7829

Discount equine Service Bundle Coggins, vaccination, teeth float. Call 813-752-0224 or 813-951-0118

www.InTheFieldMagazine.com

16’7” Fiberglass boat with 2007 Trailer, 90hp Johnson Outboard. Center console, Bimini, live well, two-step ladder. $6,300 Call 813-758-3864

•••••ESTATE SALE••••• Large dbl. wide mobile home, partially furnished, 2/bath, 2/bdrm, large kitchen, huge living room, laundry room, front screened in porch, covered dbl. carport, utility room. Located in Country Meadows Adult Park in Plant City. Asking $24,000. Call Al at 813-763-2220.

ACCOUNT manager Sales, account management. Immediate openings in Hillsborough and Polk Counties. Email your resume to info@inthefieldmagazine.com

BAD BOY AOS Zero turn, 60”cut, 35hp, Cat diesel engine, 215 hrs. $6,950. Call Alvie 813-759-8722.

800-226-3510

2002 Fish Hawk Bombardier Boat

/

NEW DOORS Closeout special!!!!! $75.00 to $295.00 Call Ted today. 813-752-3378

•••FOR SALE••• Fertilized Bahia Hay. 4X5 rolls $25 ea. 800 rolls available. Call for pick up 863-287-3091 or 863-294-1650

702 S. Collins St. • Plant City, FL 33563

September 2011

MOBILE HOME SIZES WINDOW SCREENS We make window screens all sizes available in different frame colors. Call Ted 813-752-3378

MASSEY FERGUSON 2300L 4X4 w/ loader, 277 hours, 22.5 hp. $7,000. Call Robby 863-537-1345

Tractor & Implement Parts New • Used • Rebuilt

92 INTHEFIELD MAGAZINE

For Sale - Double-row Bedpress and Single-Row Plastic Machine Double-Row Bedpress for Strawberries/Vegetables $3,500. Single Row Plastic Machine $1,500. Both in good condition. Cal 813-967-2820

MASSEY FERGUSON 255 Grove Tractor with 6’ mower $7,500 Call Alvie 813-759-8722

Seedway Vegetable Seeds 3810 Drane Field Road, Unit 30 Lakeland, FL 33811 ~ www.seedway.com ~ 863-648-4242

Newtion Loca

HORSE BOARDING Stalls and individual turnout, lighted arena and round pen. Owners on property. $300 full care. Call 813-610-4416

DECKING BRDS. & T1LL SIDING Call Ted 813-752-3378

Cylindrical, glossy fruit is a standout for color & an attractive fresh look. Plant is open & spineless. 45 days. IR: Sf, WMV, ZYMV.

For Sale - 2001 Mahindra Tractor 4 Wheel Drive with a Loader & Digger on the back. $16,000 OBO. Call 813-689-4441

Animal & Bird Cages Equipment serving the fur-bearing & exotic bird industry. Cages built to order. Wire by roll or foot. 813-752-2230 www.ammermans.com Swap Nov 27, 2011, July 15, 2012, Nov. 25, 2012 NORTH GEORGIA MOUNTAINS MLS# 209797 Beautiful Country setting updated 2008-2009, whirlpool tub, Lots of wide usable porches, views of pasture & mountains, open Floor plan, master bedroom with huge master bath. Lots of windows and doors. Call Jane Baer w/ Jane Baer Realty.1-800-820-7829 Compressed Alfalfa Blocks 700+lbs $110.00 & 1300+lbs bales $210.00. Call 813-737-5263. Ask about delivery.

September 2011

TO PLACE YOUR CLASSIFIED ADS CALL 813-759-6909 info@inthefieldmagazine.com www.inthefieldmagazine.com

INTHEFIELD MAGAZINE 93


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94 INTHEFIELD MAGAZINE

September 2011

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96 INTHEFIELD813.719.1913 MAGAZINE September 2011 fax • teethfloat@aol.com

Profile for Berry Publications, Inc

In The Field Magazine - Hillsborough County September 2011  

Hillsborough County's September 2011 issue of In The Field Magazine

In The Field Magazine - Hillsborough County September 2011  

Hillsborough County's September 2011 issue of In The Field Magazine