“Paladin® gave me about a 20% yield increase over last year.” Cecil Howell, H&R Farms, Immokalee, FL
Cecil had heard about Paladin® soil fumigant’s higher yields and its effectiveness on weeds and soilborne diseases. So he made the switch, treating 110 acres of peppers with a tank mix of 79:21 Paladin® soil fumigant and chloropicrin with a pre-emergent herbicide. “I was tickled to death with the yield. Especially going through all the cold weather and rain,” said Cecil. “And it was definitely cheaper than previous treatments.” He got the quick nutsedge control he was looking for, too. “Within a week, it was already brown. It was the quickest thing I had ever seen.” Plant size also lived up to his expectations. “They were bigger and looked great. I was really pleased,” says Cecil. Cecil’s 20% higher yield translated to 1,800 boxes of peppers per acre. He smiled when asked if he plans on using Paladin® again. “It worked so good.” Paladin® soil fumigant is a restricted-use pesticide. Always refer to and follow the federal label requirements for crops, specific use rates and application directions. Paladin is a registered trademark of Arkema
John & Jeff Wolfe
VOL. 11 â€˘ ISSUE 12
Hillsborough County Farm Bureau 100 S. Mulrennan Rd. Valrico, Fl. Office Hours: Monday - Friday 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Insurance Services: 813.685.5673 Member Services: 813.685.9121 OFFICERS AND EXECUTIVE COMMITTEE
Contents OCTOBER 2015 Cover Photo by Stephanie Humphrey
Florida AG Expo
Fishing Hot Spots
Literary Time Machine
Hillsborough County Fair
Rocking Chair Chatter
FFA Hall of Fame
Business Up Front
Page 14 Page 16
Page 46 Page 48 Page 54 Page 58
Page 78 Page 84 Page 88 Page 89 Page 92
Meet the Minks
Page 28 Page 32
Page 64 Page 74
Page 94 Page 95
Kenneth Parker....................President Will Womack................Vice President James Tew..........................Treasurer Michelle Williamson.............Secretary DIRECTORS FOR 2015 - 2016 Roy Davis, David Drawdy, Jim Dyer, Jim Frankowiak, Gleen Harrell, Chip Hinton, John Joyner, Erin Nesmith, Buddy Coleman, Jake Raburn ,Marty Tanner, James Tew, Ron Wetherington, Brantley Ferguson, and Vincent Tort
Judi Whitson, Executive Director 813.685.9121 Farm Bureau Insurance Special Agents Valrico Office 813.685.5673
100 S. Mulrennan Rd., Valrico, FL. 33594 Tommy Hale, CLU, ChFC, CASL, CPCU Agency Mgr. Juile Carlson, John McGuire
Plant City Office 813.752.5577
1302 S. Collins St., Plant City, FL 33563 Jeff Summer Bill Williams
Tampa Office 813.933.5440
13103 W. Linebaugh Ave. Tampa, FL.33626 Greg Harrell, Jeff Harper, Ralph Russo
AGENCY MANAGER Tommy Hale INTHEFIELD MAGAZINE
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IN NTHEFIELD IELD MAGAZINE
October ctober 2015
Letter from the Editor
Publisher/Photography Karen Berry Senior Managing Editor/ Associate Publisher Sarah Holt Editor-In-Chief Al Berry Editor Patsy Berry
October is State Forest Awareness Month and many of the 35 state forests across Florida are holding events to celebrate the occasion.
Office Manager Bob Hughens Sales Manager Danny Crampton
“The Florida Forest Service boasts more than 1 million acres of pristine and diverse state forest land,” said Florida Commissioner of Agriculture Adam H. Putnam. “I encourage everyone to take the opportunity to hike, bike, horseback ride, kayak or just explore Florida’s beautiful landscape this month during State Forest Awareness Month.”
Sales Al Berry Tina Richmond Danny Crampton Melissa Nichols
At one of Florida’s parks, Lake Wales Ridge State Forest near Frostproof, you will discover one of the highest concentrations of rare and endangered plants in the continental US.
Creative Director/Illustrator Juan Alvarez
For more information and for a list of state forests, visit the Florida Department of Agriculture’s web site at www.freshfromflorida.com. October is also Breast Cancer Awareness month. According to the US Department of Health and Human Services, about 1 in 8 women born today in the US will get breast cancer at some point. The good news is if discovered and treated early, many women can survive breast cancer. This month is a chance to raise awareness about the importance of early detection of breast cancer. Until Next Month
Photography Karen Berry Al Berry Stephanie Humphrey Staff Writers Al Berry Sandy Kaster James Frankowiak Sean Green Ginny Mink Libby Hopkins Nick Chapman Vanessa Caceres Contributing Writers Woody Gore Les McDowell John Dicks
Sarah The LORD make his face shine upon you and be gracious to you. - Numbers 6:25
In The Field Magazine is published monthly and is available through local Hillsborough County businesses, restaurants, and many local venues. It is also distributed by U.S. mail to a target market, which includes all of the Greenbelt Property owners, members of the Hillsborough County Farm Bureau and Strawberry Grower’s 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: firstname.lastname@example.org or call 813759-6909 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 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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IN INTTHE HEFFIELD IELD M MAGAZINE AGAZINE
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100 South Mulrennan Road • Valrico, FL 33594 • 813-685-9121
A Time for Reflection Dear Readers: The annual meeting of Hillsborough County Farm Bureau is always a special gathering. This year – our 73rd year -- was no exception. In addition to thanking our Farm Bureau family members, it is a wonderful opportunity to reflect upon what so many do in so many different ways to celebrate agriculture here in Hillsborough County. Fellowship is an important aspect of Farm Bureau membership. I enjoy seeing the many friends that I have made through my involvement in both agriculture and Farm Bureau. That is, no doubt, the case with many who attended the gathering and enjoyed the steak dinner prepared by Tommy Hale and his associates with Farm Bureau Insurance and served by our board of directors. While there is much to report about our annual meeting, I would like to highlight some of the proceedings: • County Alliance for Responsible Environmental Stewardship. Lyna Berry Farms, Borchard Farms, Favorite Farms and E.W. Simmons Farm were each recognized for their environmental stewardship practices as 2015 C.A.R.E.S. award recipients, a totally voluntary program.
My thanks, too, to Camille Dupree. Her welcome songs and rendition of our National Anthem were very well received. Also, I know we all appreciated the desserts provided by Farm Credit. Lastly, my appreciation to Michelle Williamson, our event chair, and Judi Whitson, our executive director. If your family does not belong to Farm Bureau, please consider membership. The modest fee associated with family membership in Farm Bureau is a great deal and your active involvement will be beneficial to both your family and our industry. If your family is already part of our Farm Bureau family, please consider suggesting membership to your friends and don’t hesitate to get involved in our policy-making process. To learn more, please visit: http:// hcfarmbureau.org or call 813/685-9121 for more information. Sincerely,
Kenneth Parker Kenneth Parker - President
• Departing board members Michelle Williamson, Roy Davis, Bill Burnette, David Drawdy and Dr. Jim Dyer for their years of service to Farm Bureau and our industry in Hillsborough County. Their impact has been significant and valuable. • A warm welcome to new board members Kenneth Parker, Glenn Harrell, John Joyner, Dr. Chip Hinton, Tony Lopez, Carson Futch, Jake Cremer, Lawrence McClure, Sambhav and Tiffany Dale. • Congratulations to Ginny Mink our Newsperson of the Year for her ongoing contributions to IN THE FIELD Magazine as she details her family’s agricultural adventures each month.
Board of Directors
Kenneth Parker, President; Will Womack, Vice-President; Ray Wood, Treasure; Michelle Williamson, Secretary; Member-at-large; Bill Burnette; Board memebers: Roy Davis, David Drawdy, Jim Dyer, Jim Frankowiak, Gleen Harrell, Chip Hinton, John Joyner, Greg Lehman, Erin Nesmith, Buddy Coleman, Jake Raburn ,Marty Tanner, James Tew, Ron Wetherington, Brantley Ferguson, and Vincent Tort Judi Whitson, Executive Director 8 8
INTHEFIELD MAGAZINE INTHEFIELD MAGAZINE
October 2015 October 2015
Discover Freedom From Incontinence
Urinary incontinence is a term that describes any accidental or involuntary loss of urine from the bladder. Women are most likely to develop incontinence during pregnancy, after childbirth or after hormonal changes of menopause due to weakened pelvic muscles. Symptoms of urinary incontinence include: ■ Inability to urinate ■ Pain related to filling the bladder ■ Increased rate of urination without a proven bladder infection ■ Rushing to the restroom and/or losing urine if you do not get there in time ■ Frequent instances of urine leakage Robotic-assisted surgery is a minimally invasive treatment option for patients who have been unable to find relief using medication and other nonsurgical therapies. If you are experiencing any of the symptoms referenced above, contact your doctor to find out if you are a candidate for minimally invasive robotic bladder repair.
Mark B. Baker, MD, FACS
Watch Dr. Baker talk about incontinence and treatment options: SouthFloridaBaptistUrology.org
For a physician referral: 1-800-BayCare (1-800-229-2273)
301 N. Alexander St., Plant City
Dr. Mark Baker is a highly trained board-certified urologist who has performed minimally invasive robotic surgeries for more than eight years at South Florida Baptist Hospital. INTHEFIELD MAGAZINE
October 2015 9 SouthFloridaBaptistUrology.org
Business Up Front By Nick Chapman
Wedding, Rodeo Events, Animal Auctions, Horse Sales, Horse Boarding
The beautiful oak shaded paddocks and winding road to the barn are the first sights that greet you as you pass through the gate at the new Rising Star Ranch off S.R. 60 on the south side of Plant City. A rescued mare grazes peacefully while her new foal lounges for a quick nap in the sun. This rejuvenated ranch appears ready to be the rising star in agricultural sales and showing in eastern Hillsborough County. Jacob and Leigh Thomas, with their business partner Herman Zuluaga, purchased the old Cecil Quarter Horse farm and have been busy cleaning up and building for their new venture. Jacob said, “My daughter Daisy is six years old and I named the ranch after her, because she is my little rising star.” The 31 acre ranch is getting a face-lift, as the Thomas family has big plans for the future. They had their first major events on October 8 & 9, which included a horse auction and small animal sale. It was an opportunity to show off the work they’ve done so far, and a chance to introduce themselves to the community. They plan to hold a horse sale monthly on the first Thursday of every month, and a small animal auction weekly on Friday. “There will be cattle, pigs, goats, chickens and every type of small farm animal available at the weekly auctions,” Thomas added. “And three times a year we’re going to do an exotic auction.” “We want to have a different feel to our horse sales and small animal auctions. When people come here, I want everyone to feel comfortable and happy. Customer service will be our big focus.” He assured that they will maintain a standard for healthy animals, and sick animals will 10
not be allowed to be shown or sold. They will have a veterinary representative present to confirm the health of each animal. “A lot of farmers don’t have time during the weekday to go to an auction. We’ll give them a place they can go on Friday nights and sell their animals.” “Not only do we want to do the auctions, but we want people to be able to come here during the week and be able to get an animal, whether they want pigs, cows, goats or horses. And we warranty all our horses for thirty days.” Jacob said people appreciate the security of the warranty and it makes for more satisfied customers. As they work and expand their farm, they plan on offering a venue for rodeos, weddings, reunions and much more. “We hope to have our rodeo arena in place and our first rodeo at the end of November or early December.” Current plans include holding four full rodeos a year, and then do fun shows, speed shows and breed shows throughout the year. Rising Star Ranch will add activities as they reshape the old quarter horse farm property into a multi-purpose and multi-animal property. “Everything we want to do here will be family oriented. Everyone will be able to come here and do something and enjoy it. That’s what it comes down to.” They also act as a rescue farm, but use their own resources to do the work. “We rescue horses, rehabilitate them and then find them homes. We have a staff of three people that work them and get them back in shape for resale to a good home.” They are selective to where their rescue horses end up, as they try to match the right owner with the right horse. WWW.INTHEFIELDMAGAZINE.COM
Jacob grew up in the business, as his grandfather and father owned and operated the Land O’ Lakes Riding Stable in Land O’ Lakes. “I’ve been in the horse and cattle business my whole life.” After getting married to Leigh last year, they relocated to Plant City. When the prospect to buy their current property became available, they jumped on the opportunity. They hope to be able to acquire more property and make the holding a 50 acre spread. “Anyone can come out here and find what they want for their family, and feel comfortable doing it. We want a place where we’ll have return customers. It’s not just about selling a horse or animal, we’re all about building a family relationship.” Rising Star Ranch is located at 1710 West State Road 60 in Plant City. You can reach Jacob via phone or text at (813) 850-7705, or you can email him at: RisingStarRanchPlantCity@ gmail.com. You can also visit their website at: www.risingstarranchplantcity.com
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AG EXPO’S 10TH ANNIVERSARY AND MUCH MORE It’s hard to believe, but Florida Ag Expo will be celebrating its 10th anniversary November 4. That’s the date when growers, regulators and others involved in Florida agriculture convene at the University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences Gulf Coast Research and Education Center (GCREC) to exchange ideas, share up-to-the-minute market information and discuss the latest in varieties, techniques and crop protection products. “This is a great opportunity for producers of tomato, strawberry, pepper, cucurbits and other crops to learn of new ideas for increasing their yields and strengthening their businesses,” said GCREC Director and Professor Dr. Jack Rechcigl. “In addition to the Ag Expo anniversary, it’s the 10th anniversary of our center here at Balm and GCREC’s 90th anniversary overall. We will also be having two ribbon cuttings that day, as well. One is for our new graduate student house and the other is for our new, 5,000-square-foot office building. “Ag Expo and our expanded facilities help further advance our mission at the GCREC to develop and share new science-based information and technology that will help Florida’s agricultural industry compete in a global marketplace,” he said. One of the most popular events at Ag Expo is the Grower Panel discussion, which this year will cover production, regulatory and labor challenges. Among educational opportunities at Ag Expo are updates on new varieties, diseases, crop inputs, weeds, marketing, protected agriculture and more. The event also features a broad exhibit area where industry suppliers showcase the newest products, equipment and service innovations. Once again, Florida Ag Expo will include several field tours of various field trials taking place at the GCREC and involving small fruit and vegetables grown in Florida. Those tours will include: Vegetable Pathology: Dr. Gary Vallad, plant pathologist: • New products for the management of cucurbit diseases • Copper alternatives for managing bacterial spot of tomato and pep14
By Jim Frankowiak
per • Supplemental fumigation strategy for managing Fusarium wilt of tomato • New fumigant systems for vegetables Weed Science: Dr. Nathan Boyd, weed scientist: • Precision herbicide technologies • Enhancing fumigant distributi9on • Alternative fumigant systems • Herbicides for nutsedge management Plant Breeding: Dr. Sam Hutton, tomato breeding and genetics: • The tomato hybrid trial tour will showcase some of the latest UF/ IFAS and commercial hybrids, alongside several proven varieties that are industry standards • The tour also will include virus-inoculated demonstration plots of hybrids with tomato yellow leaf curl virus resistance Horticulture: Dr. Shinsuke Agehara, horticulturist: • Eliminating transplant shock by inhibiting stress borne hormone ethylene • Improved early growth and fruit set by eliminating transplant shock Pollinator Safety: Jeannette Klopchin, environmental specialist: • Risks that pesticides can pose to bees and measures that growers and beekeepers can adopt to protect both crops and honeybee colonies Postharvest Cooling: Dr. Steve Sargent, postharvest specialist: • Assessing cooling needs • Demonstration of commercial-scale, hydrocooler unit For additional information about the 10th annual Florida Ag Expo, including registration: visit: FloridaAgExpol.com. Registration is free for growers, researchers, students and association personnel. WWW.INTHEFIELDMAGAZINE.COM
Creamy Chaos By Libby Hopkins
There are many mediums used to create art. One of them is food.
Yes, food creation is an art form in itself. Colors and textures are all taken into consideration when edible works of art are being created. Tina Contes considers colors, textures and tastes in every batch of ice cream she creates for Chaos Creamery in South Tampa. Contes is the general manager of Dough which is the bakery that is a part of Datz deli. Chaos Creamery is part of Dough. Contes gets her inspiration for creating the unique flavors of ice cream from everything she does. “It comes from a collection of pretty much everything,” Contes said. “I love food, I love serving people, so I wanted to make things that people are going to like and get excited about.” Strangely enough, color comes into play when she is creating the ice cream. “There are a zillion flavors that come to mind when I am making ice cream and it’s hard just to put out 12 a day,” Contes said. “I think of it almost as a composition, do I have a purple one, do I have an orange one, then I can narrow it down from there so it looks balanced.” Dough had gelato when they first opened three years ago and it was good but it didn’t fit the direction the bakery was going. “We were working towards a more traditional Americana feel for the bakery and the gelato really didn’t fit,” Contes said. “We thought it would be really fun to make ice cream because there are a lot of yogurt shops in the area but not many ice cream shops with flavors that are seasonal with fresh ingredients.” Chaos Creamery was born. The name came from the brainstorming sessions Contes and the owners of Datz had to figure out a name for their new product. “It was a chaotic and tiring process,” Contes said. “Finally we were like, chaos creamery and it was the one name we all liked.” Contes attended the infamous Penn State University Ice Cream Short Course. According to the university’s website (www.foodscience.psu. edu) “Each year about 120 students from all over the world attend the program. In its 119 year history, the course has attracted more than 4,400 participants from every state in the nation and every continent except Antarctica. The student roster reads like, a Who’s Who of ice cream. Representatives from mom-and-pop operations, as well as 16
industry leaders have traveled to University Park to learn secrets of ice cream making. Participants have included Baskin-Robbins, Ben and Jerry’s, Blue Bell and Haagen-Dazas to name a few. The 7-day course is offered annually in January. Students attend more than 20 workshops on specialized areas of ice cream technology including flavoring, refrigeration, freezing and hardening techniques, and the manufacture of frozen yogurt and novelty frozen desserts.” When Contes got back from Penn State she started making her first batches of ice cream. She realized it was harder than she thought. “It really is an art form,” Contes said. “You know if you are a painter, there are going to be some paintings you throw away or hide under your bed. We don’t put our an ice cream flavor until everyone on our staff says it’s the best ice cream they’ve ever had.” Some of the ice cream flavors Contes has created include, sweet potato casserole, brown butter pear pistachio, pumpkin spice latte and my favorite, Ikarian which is a mixture of fig, goat cheese, honey, orange and olive oil. Chaos Creamery does offer your standard ice cream flavors like chocolate, vanilla and strawberry but their vanilla is made with Madagascar vanilla beans and their strawberry ice cream is made from grilled Plant City strawberries. “We use about three pints of Plant City strawberries in every batch and we actually grill them because I feel it brings out the flavor in them,” Contes said. “You don’t get a lot of the grilled flavor in them when it’s done but the ice cream is a beautiful color and we love saying it’s made from local ingredients. Keeping things local is extremely important to Contes and the staff at Dough. “Another way I get inspiration for the flavors of ice cream we create is to take the time to go to the local farmers markets in the area,” Contes said. “I’ll walk around and see what’s good and what’s available to put in the flavors I make as well.” If you would like to learn more about Chaos Creamery or Dough, you can visit their website at www.datztampa.com or call 813-9021979. Dough is located at 2616 S. MacDill Ave. in Tampa. WWW.INTHEFIELDMAGAZINE.COM
Let’s Fish Tampa Bay in October Hopefully the shallow inshore flats will begin clearing up after the rains of August and September. If so, the bite should improve. That’s not to say the bites been all that bad. We’re still catching fish; it’s just a little difficult to see them in the tannin colored waters. They’re eating almost everything offered and we’re certainly doing more catching than fishing. So as late summer and early fall temperatures start dropping this is a great time to fish; it makes temperatures tolerable on the fish and most of all the anglers. If you want to catch a few snook, redfish, trout, mackerel or perhaps a mess of snapper, now is the time.
Redfish are showing up around the grass flats and mangrove
shorelines. Scourging for food from area to area you can often find them; simply watch the water. As they move the school humps the shallow water. It can very subtle or aggressive depending on their traveling speed. The biggest mistake anglers make is chasing a school of spooked redfish. If you’ll wait, normally they calm down and begin feeding again. However, if you immediately jump on the trolling motor and give chase that’s all you’re going to be doing for the next hour or so is chasing a school of redfish. Instead of catching several fish you may have to settle for only one or two. It’s also the time of the year when some of the big reds show up. You never know whether you’re going to a catch one in the slot or one of the giants over 30 inches. These fish often top the scales at 15 plus pounds. The upper and lower bay is also holding good numbers of fish
As for the others, we’ve been catching good sized mangrove/grey snapper at the bridges and on the grass flats with some topping out around 3 pounds (remember they are a reef fish and according to the rules you should be using circle hooks and they must be 12” total length).
Cobias are showing up on the flats and fish reefs and for us it
usually only takes a chum bag over the side to spark their curiosity. If you hook-up, be ready with another rod and bait as others often follow the action. Mackerel, bluefish, sharks, jacks and ladyfish are feeding on bait schools everywhere.
We’ve been catching sea trout on deeper hard bottom grass flats. Frequently when you catch one there are others in the same sand hole. We’re having success using smaller pilchards, and dollar sized pinfish, but live shrimp always catch trout. I nose hook pinfish and pilchard’s, shrimp I hook in the carapace just under the horn. Depending on the water depth sometimes a popping cork will draw attention to the bait.
Snook are open to harvest from September 1 through December
1 with a slot limit of 28 to 33 inches. With most of the snook being caught averaging in the 22 to 25 inch range it’s often tough to put a slot fish in the boat. But if you work at it, you could boat one especially as fall approaches. We did catch one or two in the 29 to 35 inch range using live greenbacks, but released them. For me they are such a great species to catch, I personally don’t see a reason to kill them for the table. They are no better eating than other fish and much more fun to catch.
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“Give Me a Call & Let’s Go Fishing” 813-477-3814 Captain Woody Gore has been guiding and fishing the Tampa, Clearwater, St. Petersburg, Tarpon Springs, Bradenton, and Sarasota areas for over fifty years; his level of customer service, experience and attention to detail allows him to offer 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 email@example.com or give him a call at 813-477-3814 WWW.IN NTHE HEFIELD IELDMAGAZINE.COM AGAZINE.COM WWW.
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• Did you know the ancient Egyptians were the first to recognize the beneficial status of the earthworm? • Cleopatra (69 – 30 B.C.) recognized the earthworms’ contribution to Egyptian agriculture and declared them to be sacred. • Removal of earthworms from Egypt was punishable by death. • Egyptian farmers were not allowed to even touch an earthworm for fear of offending the god of fertility. • A 1949 study by the USDA confirmed that the great fertility of the soil in the Nile valley was due in large part to the work of earthworms. • Earthworms neutralize soil pH. • Composting with worms occurs four times faster than normal composting. • One of the largest earthworms ever found was almost 22 feet long.
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Over this past year I have received numerous funny, clean, e-mail jokes from Mac Smith, Bruce Brodwell and Bob Hughens! Some of the better ones I have saved for use in “Rock’n Chair Chatter. So, here we go!
it. I’m not going to get rid of my house. I guess he would.”
From the state where drunk driving is considered a sport, comes this absolutely true story. Recently a routine police patrol parked outside a bar called the Pot Hole in a small farm town in north Georgia. After last call the officer noticed a man leaving the bar so intoxicated that he could barely walk. The man stumbled around the parking lot for a few minutes with the officer quietly observing. After what seemed an eternity in which he tried his keys on five different vehicles, the man managed to find his truck and trailer and fall into it. He sat there for a few minutes as a number of other patrons left the bar and drove off. Finally, he got into the car and started the engine, switched the wipers on and off, they were fine. He then flicked the blinkers on and off a couple of times, honked the horn and then switched on the lights. He moved the vehicle forward a few inches, reversed a little and then remained still for a few more minutes as some more of the other patrons’ vehicles left. Finally, when his was the only car left in the parking lot, he pulled out and drove slowly down the road. The police officer, having waited patiently all this time, now started up his patrol car, put on the flashing lights, promptly pulled the man over and administered a breath analyzer test. To his amazement, the breath analyzer indicated no evidence that the man had consumed any alcohol at all! Dumbfounded, the officer said, ‘I’ll have to ask you to accompany me to the police station. This breath analyzer equipment must be broken.’
“Well the bed is brand new, and it cost us $2000. It’s going to last a long time, so I guess he would.”
“If I died and you remarried, and he lived in this house,” the husband asks, “would he sleep in our bed?”
“If I died and you remarried, and he lived in this house and slept in our bed, would he use my golf clubs?” “Oh, no!” the wife replies. “He’s left-handed.” Little Bobby was spending the weekend with his grandmother after a particularly trying week in kindergarten. His grandmother decided to take him to the park on Saturday morning. It had been snowing all night and everything was beautiful. His grandmother remarked, “Doesn’t it look like an artist painted this scenery? Did you know God painted this just for you?” Bobby said, “Yes, God did it and he did it left handed.” This confused his grandmother a bit, and she asked him, “What makes you say God did this with his left hand?” “Well,” said Bobby, “we learned at Sunday School last week that Jesus sits on God’s right hand!”
‘I seriously doubt it,’ said the smiling farmer. ‘Tonight I’m the designated decoy.’
I know you have been lying awake at night wondering why baby diapers have brand names such as”Luvs,” “Huggies,” and “Pampers,” while undergarments for old people are called “Depends.”
A hooded robber burst into a Texas bank and forced the tellers to load a sack full of cash.
Well here is the low down on the whole thing.
On his way out the door, a brave Texas customer grabbed the hood and pulled it off revealing the robber’s face. The robber shot the customer without a moment’s hesitation. He then looked around the bank and noticed one of the tellers looking straight at him. The robber instantly shot him also. Everyone else, by now very scared, looked intently down at the floor in silence. The robber yelled, ‘Well, did anyone else see my face?’ There are a few moments of utter silence in which everyone was plainly afraid to speak. Then, one old cowboy tentatively raised his hand, and while keeping his head down said, ‘My wife got a pretty good look at you.’ A husband asks his wife, “Honey, if I died, would you remarry?” “After a considerable period of grieving, I guess I would. We all need companionship.” “If I died and you remarried,” the husband asks, “would he live in this house?” “We’ve spent a lot of money getting this house just the way we want 22
When babies poop in their pants, people are still gonna Luv’em, Hug’em and Pamper’em. When old people mess in their pants, it “Depends” on who’s in the will! Of all the jokes, I think this one from Mac is the best. On a bitterly cold winter morning a husband and wife in northern Michigan were listening to the radio during breakfast. They heard the announcer say, “We are going to have 8 to 10 inches of snow today. You must park your car on the even-numbered side of the street, so the snow plows can get through.” So the good wife went out and moved her car. A week later while they are eating breakfast again, the radio announcer said, “We are expecting 10 to 12 inches of snow today. You must park your car on the odd-numbered side of the street, so the snow plows can get through.” The good wife went out and moved her car again. The next week they are again having breakfast, when the radio announcer say’s, “We are expecting 12 to 14 inches of snow today. You must park....”Then the electric power went out. The good wife was very upset, and with a worried look on her face she said, “I don’t know what to do. Which side of the street do I need to park on so the snow plows can get through?” Then with the love and understanding in his voice that all men who are married to blondes exhibit, the husband replied, “Why don’t you just leave the car in the garage this time?” WWW.INTHEFIELDMAGAZINE.COM
Shake It Off Before the Holiday’s
2015 PLANT CITY, FL 13TH ANNUAL
FRIDAY NIGHT FEATURES
CLEMONS ROAD Concert Starts @ 7:30 pm
1500 South Park Road
LARGE BIG GREEN EGG OR YETI COOLER
For More Information Contact the
Plant City Chamber of Commerce 800-760-2315 or 813-754-3707 www.plantcity.org firstname.lastname@example.org
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SPONSORED BY: All items to be awarded 11/21/15
Want to See an Endangered Species?
A New Red-Cockaded Woodpecker Cluster We had the opportunity to talk to Jonathan Chandler with the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service. He shared, “I started at St. Marks National Wildlife Refuge in January and one of the primary duties with that position is working with the RCW (red-cockaded woodpecker) and so that was really my first large scale introduction into working with the woodpeckers. Before that I had done some prescribed burning up in Virginia, in red-cockaded woodpecker habitat, but hadn’t actually worked with the birds themselves. So that was a first for me when I came down here. Since I started in January, I’ve been pretty much all woodpeckers, all the time. It’s been my first full season working with them but it’s been good.” The red-cockaded woodpecker is so named thanks to a small patch of red feathers behind the eyes of the males. This is actually pretty hard to see in the wild. They prefer to live in pinelands, long leaf pine specifically, and are predicted to have a population of only 10,000 birds or less! The over cutting of old pine forest and the suppression of naturally occurring fires have greatly contributed to their decline in the southeast. Given the sad state of their reality, we asked Jonathan for any good news. He told us, “One of the neat things that’s happening is we have a population here at the refuge, on the western side of the refuge in the Panacea area, but we’re starting a new population in the St. Marks unit of the refuge right near the visitor’s center. So that’s something we’ve really been involved in fairly recently in getting cavities ready and making sure there’s enough habitat to support the birds that we’ll bring in.” Where are they getting these birds? We wondered. He responded, “Actually in the beginning of October we will translocate birds from Apalachicola National Forest. We will bring five pairs of birds over to the refuge and let them loose in the new cavities and the new clusters and hope that they stick around. We will slowly build the population up in that section of the refuge. Things are looking very good for them and what’s incredibly helpful is that it’s a species that responds well to being translocated. That’s taking them from one area and moving them to another. Some species that are on the endangered species list don’t have that luxury. They don’t adapt that well, but with the red-cockaded woodpecker, they certainly do.” We wanted to know what you guys could do to help. He recommended, “Your readers can help in that one of the interesting things about red-cockaded woodpeckers is that they build cavities in live pine trees. But the pine trees need to be old growth pine. So you’re looking 28
By Ginny Mink
at anywhere between 60, 70, 80 years old at least before they’re going and putting a cavity in there. In areas where there is long leaf pine, or even if it’s not long leaf, if it’s slash or something else, the chances are there of that area being red-cockaded woodpecker habitat, or that it seems to meet the requirements for the birds. If there’s any talk of ‘Hey, let’s put in a development,’ or a golf course or whatever it might be, any sort of outreach in that area would be great. You know sort of, ‘Oh no let’s save this for red-cockaded woodpeckers.’ That’s definitely one thing that’s helpful. We can certainly plant pines, but until those pines reach that old growth stage its not quite suitable habitat.” He supplied us with some additional specifics on the birds, “They eat insects. They’ll utilize the entire trunk of the tree that’s in their range, scraping away bark and pecking away a little bit and just seeing what sorts of insects and grubs are eating away at the pine.” What about their wee ones? We wanted to know. He answered, “What we were seeing this year at St. Mark’s, anyhow, is anywhere between one and four. Another thing that’s unique about the woodpecker is that they are a communal species. In any given area is the breeding pair, the male and the female. The nest is actually in the male’s cavity. The communal aspect is that there are what they call helper birds and the helper birds will help feed the young. They’ll help find insects and bring them back, they’ll participate in defense of the territory. So if you’ve got a really big habitat and you’ve got these helper birds, you will probably be more inclined to have a larger brood.” Finally, we wondered if there was anything he really wanted to share with our readers and he said, “The big thing I wanted to share is that we’re starting a new population in the St. Marks unit. It’s not that it’s a secret, it’s just not a lot of people know that that’s happening. We’re actually going to be doing that on the 5th and the 6th; that’s the tentative schedule. One of the clusters that we’re putting in is not even a quarter of a mile behind the visitor center and there’s a trail that goes right by it. So really, if folks want to stop by early enough in the morning and listen for them or try to see them, if they have an interest in birding, it’s not a very far walk at all. We encourage people to come visit us.” We encourage the same! You can see (or maybe hear) the red-cockaded woodpeckers at St. Marks National Wildlife Refuge starting in October. Check them out in St. Marks, Florida 32355. Contact them by phone for additional information: (850) 925-6121. WWW.INTHEFIELDMAGAZINE.COM
p Volunteer Laura Kellam checks an RCW cavity for eggs and chicks WWW.INTHEFIELDMAGAZINE.COM
The Road to the Strawberry Field By Sarah Holt
The road to the strawberry field can be a winding one. Especially when you aren’t sure which field to go to. Luckily, we easily navigated around the fields, and around some more, before we finally found the one we were looking for.
irrigation. Fumigant is also added to the soil during this process. The tractor laying the plastic has workers riding on the back, ensuring the plastic is going down as it should and alerting the tractor driver to any problems that may arise.
Karen Berry, publisher of In The Field, was behind the wheel and Amber Jurgensen, managing editor of the Plant City Times & Observer, and I were passengers. It was time for us to learn what it takes to get the ground ready for planting strawberries.
Fancy Farms uses TIF or Totally Impermeable Film to cover the beds. This plastic mulch is used to hold fumigants in the soil at the doses needed to control pests and to prevent the loss of fumigant. Black plastic is used to hold in the heat. How much plastic you ask? For Fancy Farm’s 230 acres of strawberries, Grooms ordered 450 rolls of plastic, each one holding 2,425 feet. You do the math.
Who better to help us understand the process of taking an empty field, with a cover crop, to the raised, plastic covered beds ready for the delicate new strawberry plants, than Carl Grooms, proprietor of Fancy Farms in Springhead. Once we found the correct field, Carl welcomed us with open arms, and jokes of course. This 15 acre field we were to learn on is just one of many that make up Fancy Farms, 120 acres owned and another 110 leased, to grow the delectable delight. The preparation of the fields begins well before the strawberry plants arrive. Once the field is bare, meaning any cover crop that may have been planted is gone, the field is “fluffed,” bringing moisture to the top, and then it is flattened with a roller. Once the fields are flattened, it is time to make the raised beds. A tractor with satellite is used to make the rows as straight as possible. The equipment being pulled behind this tractor makes the initial raised “bed.” At the end of the row the driver takes over, turns the tractor and prepares it for the next trip down the field, once turned and positioned, the satellite takes over again. If the beds happen to crumble or have low spots, workers fill in these spots using a shovel. In all, at Fancy Farms, there are three tractors navigating the fields. The second one tightens up the bed, and the third one lays the plastic and tape for 32
But we aren’t done. The rows need to be even on the ends and this is done by good old manual labor. A worker with a shovel clears out the end of the row so they are all nice and uniform. Once the preparation is done there is a 21 day wait until the berries, which for Fancy Farms this year are the Radiance and Sweet Sensation varieties, can be planted. Fancy Farms uses both domestic and H-2A workers. Grooms hired about 50 workers to help with the beds and plastic; another 50 will come in to help plant with 50 more for picking season. The H-2A program allows U.S. employers or U.S. agents who meet specific regulatory requirements to bring foreign nationals to the United States to fill temporary agricultural jobs. These workers have their specific tasks as assigned and were scattered throughout the field doing a variety of jobs. So you see, it’s not as easy and rolling out some plastic and sticking plants in the ground. A lot of work goes in to preparing the fields before the baby strawberry plants arrive.
Tales from the farm
My View By Amber Jurgensen | Managing Editor, Plant City Times and Observer We didn’t get much direction. “Just come down Futch Road,” Fancy Farms owner Carl Grooms told Plant City Times & Observer Publisher Karen Berry in a phone call earlier in the week. We are in Berry’s 4Runner. In the Field Editor Sarah Holt is in the passenger seat. I’m in the back with my nose pressed against the window. In the three years I’ve covered the Winter Strawberry Capital of the World I’ve been on many farms, but I haven’t been able to see the planting process from the beginning — the very beginning. The seeds haven’t been dropped in the beds yet. In fact, some of the fields haven’t even had beds made out of their soil. Berry pulls onto the farm property, and Grooms is nowhere in sight. She is determined to find him. We bypass the paved road to the other side of the farm and charge onto the makeshift path between fields. The dirt has been trampled down by trucks and tractors. Tread prints are ankle deep in wetter stretches. Her tires start spinning. “Don’t worry, we have four-wheel drive,” Berry says. “Just don’t get stuck in Carl’s field,” Holt says. “He’ll never let you live it down.” When we don’t find him by the old tractor parts, we turn around and head back into the field. Berry points out the red and blue plastic plates that are under each sprinkler head on the beds. I haven’t noticed them on any other farm I’ve been to. “The first time I met Carl he told me those are UFOs,” Berry says. UFOs? “He wouldn’t tell me what they are really for,” Berry says. “He just kept saying they were to communicate with the UFOs.” We finally find a secluded plot hidden by a trees. There are farmhands, busy digging and draping and driving, on the opposite side of the 15 acres. Grooms pulls up in an F-250 behind us as if the UFOs had told him our exact location. “How’s it feel to be lost in the woods?” He asks. He hoots under his signature white beard. His sense of humor WWW.INTHEFIELDMAGAZINE.COM
doesn’t stop there. After 43 years of growing strawberries, he has enough stories to tell to rival stand-up comedian Jeff Foxworthy. He admits he knows Spanglish, including a slew of bad words he hears from his Mexican farmhands. They’ve seen alligators on some of the dirt roads made to navigate the farm. And one time a news reporter backed into a 4-foot-deep ditch. “Plenty of news reporters get stuck on freeze nights,” he says. A sliver of skin on his chest is showing from his unbuttoned denim shirt, and he has a flip phone that looks like it’s from 2005 in a case clipped to his waist. “I don’t text, flip, switch, swipe, squirt, push, tap,” Grooms says. With a 230-acre farm to run, who has time for Facebook and mobile WiFi. The fields are his passion. To run it takes work — and he’s not shy about putting Holt and I to work. He helps us into the tractors. We meet 28-year-old domestic worker Felix Ramirez, who is making beds, and Grooms’ son, Dustin Grooms, who is laying plastic behind Ramirez. Lucky for me, I get to ride in the air-conditioned cab. When the bumpy ride is over, we get to work shoveling the edge of a bed. Each bed needs to start and end at equal places to install irrigation lines. Digging into the compressed dirt in the humid Florida sun is more like doing a CrossFit routine in the middle of a mud run. I’m starting to feel silly for doing my hair this morning. To think, these guys do this tough labor day after day in a game of strawberry roulette. No one can predict how the season will go: the weather, the prices, the reliability of the labor. But Grooms takes it in strides. “As long as everybody’s keeping up, then this will flow,” Grooms says. Still, there’s one last question on my mind. What are those red and blue plates for? “Years ago it was to keep the elephants out of the field,” Grooms says. “They love strawberries. All those circus elephants and the ones at Busch Gardens. It keeps them out.” I guess we’ll never know Grooms’ strawberry-growing secret. INTHEFIELD MAGAZINE
By Sandy Kaster, M.S. Clinical Medicines, B.S. Nutrition Science
Mamey, also called mamey sapote, is native to Mexico and Central America and has been grown in South Florida since the mid-1800s. Today mamey is cultivated in these areas, as well as the Carribbean, Cuba, and other Latin American countries. This fruit is particularly treasured by Cubans for its unique flavor and texture. Florida is the only state in the United States that produces mamey. This tropical fruit is related to the sapodilla and the canistel, but is unrelated to the black sapote and white sapote. Shaped like a football and ranging from 4-10 inches long and 3-5 inches wide, mamey has a brown, leathery skin that surrounds a red to red-orange flesh. When ripe, the flesh has a very rich, creamy texture and sweet flavor. The flavor is unique but has been described as a combination of apricot and raspberry flavors. Small fruits typically have one large, long seed, while larger fruits may have 2-4 seeds that are easily removable. Mamey is enjoyed eaten out-of-hand, or blended into smoothies or milkshakes. In Florida, its peak season starts in late June and extends through October.
Mamey sapote is full of vitamins, minerals, and nutrients. A one cup serving of chopped, fresh mamey (175 g) contains 215 calories, 2.5 grams of protein, 0.8 gram of fat and 56 grams of carbohydrates, and 9.5 grams of fiber. According to the U.S. Department of Agriculture, a one cup serving of mamey also delivers 67% of your daily needs for vitamin C, 63% for vitamin B6, 19% for copper, 18% for manganese, 17% for potassium, and plentiful amounts of iron, magnesium, riboflavin, and vitamins A and E.
Vitamin C is often touted for its ability to fight colds and viruses and maintain healthy skin and gums. This important antioxidant neutralizes free radicals, which are compounds that cause cell damage and widespread inflammation in the body. Vitamin C lowers cancer risk and helps regenerate vitamin E levels. Additionally, this vitamin increases iron absorption. Consuming a vitamin C-rich food, such as mamey sapote, alongside a food such as spinach will increase the amount of iron absorbed from the spinach by the body. Vitamin C plays other important roles in the body, providing protection from cardiovascular disease, cancer, joint disease, and cataracts.
Vitamin B6, also called pyridoxine, helps the body convert food into fuel and is needed for healthy skin, hair, eyes, and liver. This water soluble vitamin is also necessary for normal nerve function and is involved in making neurotransmitters, which carry signals from one nerve cell to another. Vitamin B6 is necessary for healthy brain function and is involved in making several important hormones, including serotonin, norepinephrine, and melatonin. Additionally, this vitamin is needed to absorb other vitamins and make red blood cells. WWW.INTHEFIELDMAGAZINE.COM
Vitamin A is well known for its contribution to good vision and healthy eyes. In a study of over 50,000 women, those who consumed the most vitamin A in their diet had a 39 percent reduced risk of developing cataracts. Cataracts are a common problem plaguing many older adults, but a diet rich in vitamin A can be protective. Additionally, data from a large study of over 100,000 men and women indicated that eating three or more servings of fruit per day lowered the risk of age-related macular degeneration (ARMD) by 36 percent, compared with people who ate less than 1.5 servings of fruit per day. ARMD is the primary cause of vision loss in older adults. Researchers concluded that the vitamins and carotenoids in fruit were responsible for the protective effect on the development of ARMD.
HOW TO SELECT & STORE
When choosing mamey, look for one with deep brown skin that is free of cuts or bruises. It should feel heavy for its size and firm to the touch. Firm mamey will ripen over several days when stored at room temperature. Ripe mamey will feel soft when squeezed and smell fragrant. Ripe fruit can be stored in the refrigerator for 1-2 days, or the pulp can be frozen for up to several months.
HOW TO ENJOY
Mamey sapote is delicious eaten straight out-of-hand. To eat, simply cut off the top and scoop out the fruit with a spoon to enjoy the creamy, sweet flesh. Discard the seeds and peel. The pulp can be pureed with milk, ice cream, or any fruit juice (orange or pineapple are especially good) for a refreshing beverage. The pulp can be used as a filling for pies or tarts or incorporated into a moist cake. Other ways to enjoy mamey include: • Slice and season with cinnamon or ginger • Dice fruit and mix into a fruit salad • Cut into cubes and steep in wine or orange juice for an hour before eating • Boil the fruit and mix with sugar for jam or jelly • Puree the flesh with sugar and freeze for a refreshing sorbet Try fresh Florida mamey sapote today! This sweet, creamy fruit is delicious and full of great nutrition.
http://edis.ifas.ufl.edu/ http://www.fairchildgarden.org/ http://www.hort.purdue.edu/ INTHEFIELD MAGAZINE
America’s First Frontier
By Les McDowell Photo by Linda Constant
The cool weather is almost here. Dry Creek, our set, seems to come alive at this time of the year. We just finished replacing boardwalk around the General Store. Plans are being finalized to build a sheriffs office and a telegraph office. I’ve always had it in my mind to have a telegraph office but never in a million years thought I could come up with the equipment needed. The other day I received an email from a man who was a collector of old telegraph equipment and was president of a club that is trying to keep that way of life alive. He came by the ranch today and showed me the different pieces of equipment needed right from the 1880s. So needless to say Dry Creek will have its own telegraph office in the not to near future. I still can’t believe it. We have been so blessed to be able to obtain different things for our set. Another example, I wanted a water wheel for our mill. I even found a big wooden spool used for high line wire. I got it home and tried and tried to use it to make a water wheel out of it, never could and gave up on that project. Then about a month later I got a call from a friend that said he found me a water wheel and it was in a barn about forty minutes from the ranch. Off I went and sure enough there was a seventeen foot waterwheel that was about to be burned to make more room in a barn. I got it home and replaced the old rotten lumber and we had a waterwheel. Funny how things always work out for Dry Creek to keep family programing alive and get what is needed for that job. It can be a real problem to find just the right horses to use on set. They have to be around equipment with a camera swinging from it and bright lights and wires all over the place, tight quarters where sound, director, grip and other folks are, stand for hours and stay calm. But our four legged cast members always come through. I have such a deep respect for them. You can’t do a period piece out of the 1880’s without horses being a major part of it. I’ve always loved horses and know there are plenty of other folk who feel like I do. Here’s a little poem I wrote as a kind 38
of a tribute to these cast members of Dry Creek....I hope it reminds you of a horse in your life. What is it about a horse that pulls to me from my inside? Maybe the way they twitch a muscle to move a fly. Is it the relaxed way they graze in clover and blow thru their lips that way? To see them resting on their side sunning, during the day. The sounds their hoofs make when they run before a storm. What a sight to see a colt wobbling just to stay up, right after he’s born. Is it their sweet smell? Or their eyes and what they can tell? To hear them in the quiet eating their grain, stop to listen then start chewing again. When they run with manes and tails blowing in the wind. How they massage each other’s neck on the same place at the same time. How long their coats get in the winter, and so shinny in the summertime. I guess I found my answer and I really didn’t even have to try. It’s all these things about a horse that pulls to me from the inside. At this time, I would like to add to this months article by thanking the best photographer I’ve ever come across. Linda Constant whose pictures always accompanies my article each month. She’s another blessing that has been brought together to make up Dry Creek. Everybody knows where Dry Creek is.....cause it’s inside each and everyone of us. WWW.INTHEFIELDMAGAZINE.COM
Celebrating a most fruitful relationship between Florida Strawberry Growers and International Paper.
Together we’re sure to enjoy many more years of sweet success.
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The Gulf Coast Research and Education Center is still growing at 90 years old.
By Jack Payne The 2015 Florida Ag Expo at the center on Nov. 4 is partly a party. Come meet a chef talking about farm-to-restaurant, hear about our plans for a hops garden, applaud the ribbon cutting to open our new wing, and feed off the energy of the eight 20-somethings who have moved into our new grad student housing.
We’ll be listening on Nov. 4. We give farmers the microphone at the annual growers’ panel, one of the most popular events at the Expo. This year Florida Fruit & Vegetable Association President Mike Stuart will moderate a panel of three growers who will talk about the state of the agriculture industry. UF/IFAS will be listening carefully.
You can register for the event at www.floridaagexpo.com.
You don’t have to be on a panel to let us know what’s on your mind. The more you can tell us about your challenges, the more we can focus on helping you surmount them. No one else does what we do for Hillsborough County-area growers – creating and sharing knowledge through research, teaching and Extension.
I’d argue that what the University of Florida’s Institute of Agricultural and Life Sciences is celebrating at the Expo is that we have the secret to old age: Stay relevant. After decades of advances on how to better irrigate, fertilize, plant, protect, and market your crops, we’re not even close to done. The ribbon cutting will open a 5,000-square-foot expansion of the Gulf Coast REC that will serve as the working space for 17 researchers, graduate students and visiting scientists. That brings the UF/IFAS team in Wimauma to 150, up from 75 a decade ago. That infusion of expertise increases our likelihood of achieving that tomato grower’s grail – a fruit that can be mechanically harvested. It also gives us a better shot at doing with pomegranates, peaches, hops, or blackberries what we did for blueberries: create the cultivars that built a $75 million-a-year industry in Florida. You can hear all about our latest research, but it’s always a two-way conversation at our research and education centers. We have these events so we can listen to you, too.
The Expo is one of the most festive ways we do it. In some ways, growing a center is like growing crops. Just as you seek advice on how to grow better tomatoes, we’re always looking for input on what we can do to make the center serve you better. After 90 years, it’s still a work in progress. It always will be, at least until every day is 65 degrees and sunny, bugs stop eating crops, and the water supply becomes infinite. We believe we wear our age well at IFAS and at the Gulf Coast REC. Center Director Jack Rechcigl is a good administrator and a good scientist not only because of his keen mind but because of a wellfunctioning pair of ears. He’s eager to use those ears on Nov. 4. I’m eager to use mine, too, since I plan to come down from Gainesville. I hope you’ll give us that chance.
Like we did 10 years ago. Our center will celebrate its 10th anniversary with the Expo, but we’ve been in Hillsborough County for 90 years. When we closed our center in Bradenton, we listened to growers who clamored for a replacement facility, and UF/IFAS built the Gulf Coast REC. It was a classic case of UF/IFAS listening and acting on what growers had to say. In other words, staying relevant.
Jack Payne is the senior vice president of agriculture and natural resources at the University of Florida’s Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences. email@example.com • @JackPayneIFAS 42
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Agritourism … It’s A New “Crop” Being Grown By Farmers by John Dicks
The cooler air of Autumn is certainly welcome by most, and not just because it puts an end to the simmering heat of summer nor that it evens out the time between beautiful sunrises and sunsets. Autumn also gives rise to having fun at fall festivals, enjoying a sip of warm cider and even getting lost in corn mazes.
tivity on land that has been classified as agricultural by a property appraiser.”
Corn mazes? It’s part of a new phenomenon in farming called Agritourism, and it’s growing faster than many of the crops that farmers have always counted on.
Perhaps even more significant is that the legislation purports to establish a limitation on legal liability from the inherit risks of the activities for the land owner, Agritourism operator and employees. That protection comes with the provision that a notice of risk must be posted on the land.
Actually, some suggest that Agritourism is a new “crop” being grown by farmers. It’s another cog in the wheel of creativity farmers have always shown when thinking “outside of the box” … or, in this case, “outside of the field.” From rotating crops to utilizing innovative planting and harvesting techniques, successful farmers have always been good stewards of the soil. In a new twist, now farms are being opened to the public willing to pay admission fees for festivals, corn mazes, tours, weddings, reunions, concerts and Easter egg hunts, just to name a few of the more popular attractions. While we live in a world where most people have never even set foot on a farm, consumers have become increasingly interested in learning where their food has come from and how it was produced. Agritourism helps answer that curiosity and is becoming ever more popular. It involves getting people out of their homes and cars, and out on the farm where all the fall festivities are happening. Consumers are enjoying the outdoors with these sights and sounds of autumn while the smells of opportunity are being harvested by more and more farmers in central Florida. The folks at IFAS estimate that in the five year period from 2007 2012, the number of Florida farms offering some form of Agritourism leapt from 281 to 724. One can only imagine how the number has grown over the last three years.
That language should open the door to countless creative activities for farmers and ranchers.
The Florida Farm Bureau noted that the protection from liability provided in the statute (FS 570.963) “should not be considered a total substitute for insurance protection. However, in most instances Agritourism owners and operators who use diligence in considering the well-being of their guests will be protected from frivolous lawsuits.” Showing that it means business, the language of the legislation does specifically require that notice be posted and “consist of a sign in black letters, with each letter a minimum of one inch in height, with sufficient color contrast to be clearly visible,” stating the following: WARNING Under Florida law, an agritourism operator is not liable for injury or death of, or damage or loss to, a participant in an agritourism activity conducted at this agritourism location if such injury, death, damage, or loss results from the inherent risks of the agritourism activity. Inherent risks of agritourism activities include, among others, risks of injury inherent to land, equipment, and animals, as well as the potential for you to act in a negligent manner that may contribute to your injury, death, damage, or loss. You are assuming the risk of participating in this agritourism activity. As Florida becomes even more populated, Agritourism may well grow to be bumper crop for creative farmers and ranchers.
Agritourism, naturally, is an interesting outgrowth industry combining the strengths of Florida’s two biggest economic engines … agriculture and tourism. There’s even a fledging organization, started in 2103 and known as the Florida Agritourism Association (FATA) which has adopted a mission of promoting this growing enterprise and educating both consumers who want to enjoy it and farmers seeking to get involved. FATA defines Agritourism as an industry attracting interested consumers to a variety of farming operations including “destinations such as, working farms and ranches, u-pick fruit and vegetable operations; vineyards and wineries; specialty crops and products; and numerous other types of farms.” It says that Agritourism’s success comes from “giving visitors a place to play and helping farmers add value to every acre.” As you might expect, with such activities increasing in the Sunshine State, the Government naturally seeks to get involved. Thus far, though, the actions have been mostly good for the industry and the industrious farmers and ranchers. Not long ago our state government created a formal definition of Agritourism to mean “any agricultural related activity consistent with a bona fide farm or ranch or in a working forest, which allows members of the general public to view or enjoy activities, including farming, ranching, historical, cultural, or harvest-your-own activities and attractions.” In 2013 the Florida Legislature passed a measure that eased regulations such as zoning ordinances, typically applying only to yearround businesses, and reduced the liability burden for farmers and ranchers opening their gates to Agritourism visitors. According to FATA, the legislation “prohibits a local government from prohibiting, restricting, regulating, or otherwise limiting an Agritourism ac46
John Dicks is both a lawyer and a farmer. He and his family own a blueberry farm and have agricultural lands which they lease for cattle operations, as John says, “to someone who knows and handles cattle much better than I do!” John is both a Gator, having received his undergraduate degree from the University of Florida, and a Seminole, with his Law Degree from Florida State University. He and his wife, Sharon, live in Plant City, where he served nine years as City Commissioner, including three years as Mayor. WWW.INTHEFIELDMAGAZINE.COM
provides a full line of
Organic Products and Systemic Nutritionals for the Strawberry Industry.
Recipes Courtesy of the Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services.
Chef Justin Timineri
Golden Fried Florida Mullet with Cabbage and Citrus Slaw DIRECTIONS Golden Fried Florida Mullet • Heat oil to 375 degrees F in deep fryer or deep saucepan. • Whisk together egg and water in a shallow dish. • Combine flour, cornmeal, cayenne, salt and pepper; mix well. • Dip fillets into egg wash then into flour mixture to coat. • Deep fry fish in hot oil for 4 to 5 minutes until fish is golden brown. • Drain on absorbent paper and serve with lemon slices.
INGREDIENTS Golden Fried Florida Mullet 4 (6-ounce) mullet fillets canola oil for frying 1 large egg 1 teaspoon water 1/2 cup all-purpose flour 1/2 cup cornmeal 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper 1/2 teaspoon salt 1/2 teaspoon pepper 2 lemons, sliced for garnish
Cabbage and Citrus Slaw
Cabbage and Citrus Slaw 1/2 large head cabbage, shredded fine 2 oranges, segmented 1 grapefruit, segmented 1/4 cup cilantro, finely chopped 1/2 red bell pepper, sliced thin 1/4 cup olive oil 2 lemons, juiced sea salt to taste fresh ground pepper to taste
In a large bowl, combine all ingredients, mix well and let marinate in refrigerator for an hour. Taste slaw and adjust seasoning with salt and pepper. Serve chilled.
Ingredients 1/2 ounce natural sugar 4 ounces grapefruit juice 4 ounces orange juice 2 drops natural vanilla extract 4 ounces low-fat milk
DIRECTIONS 1.) Pour the orange juice, grapefruit juice, milk, sugar and vanilla extract into a blender with 2 ounces (approximately 4 cups) of ice.
3.) Pour into a glass, add a straw and serve. 4.) Garnish with sliced fruit.
2.) Blend until smooth.
Citrus Dream Milkshake 48
IN NTHE HEFIELD IELD MAGAZINE AGAZINE
October ctober 2015
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Ornamental Gardening in Florida
Part 13 By Ginny Mink
Congratulations, you have made it past one year on our Literary Time Machine! We hope that you have garnered a great deal of knowledge and entertainment along this voyage and we pray that the experience will continue on as we venture into part thirteen of Charles Torrey Simpson’s gem, Ornamental Gardening in Florida. We are certain that this month’s chapter on Orchids and Bromeliads will be truly enlightening. Mr. Simpson begins the chapter with a revelation that might be quite shocking to the non-orchid people. He says, “Few people know that there are at present about twenty-five species of native, epiphytal orchids known to be living in Florida.”¹ Furthermore he explains, “Some of these are beautiful, while all are strange and interesting.”¹ Orchid lovers will surely agree. He then theorizes, “They are nearly all natives of the West Indies or Tropical America and it is probable that they were mostly introduced into Florida by birds, wind or floating vegetation.”¹ Then he tells his readers that some of these species have, “no beauty,”¹ because they are “classed among the weeds of the family.”¹ Perhaps you’ve noted some quite lovely weeds and wondered why they were so labeled? Maybe, just maybe, that’s the case with these particular orchids he seems unimpressed with. He gives some specific descriptions of various species but then he explains how to successfully grow some of these lovely flowers. He instructs, “Many of the exotic orchids can be grown on trees in our hammocks with a moderate degree of success. No orchid will do any good on a tree unless it is so firmly fastened that it cannot be moved about in the slightest degree.”¹ He continues the instructions telling readers to remove the potting soil around the roots (if the orchids have been obtained from a dealer). Then he adds, “I cut strips of wire window screen say an inch wide, nail one end fast to the bark of the tree and then draw the other tightly across the bunch of roots and nail it.”¹ We wonder what environmentalist would have to say about nailing orchids to trees? He recommends planting at the beginning of the rainy season because, “…at that time most of them are ready to make new growth.”¹ His discourse doesn’t end there though, “With many of these orchids the old roots die when about a year old so it will do no harm when setting if the ends are cut off.”¹ His advice continues, “They should be put on trees whose bark does not scale off or break off: the live oak is fine as its bark is rough and never comes loose, besides it sometimes has a little mold in the crevices which the roots seem to like.”¹ Nobody really likes live oaks anyhow so we guess putting some nails in them will be alright? You can laugh, it’s a joke. The next paragraph caught us by utter surprise and had us chuckling. He says, “Some parts of the state are troubled with wild rats and if orchids in such places are placed so that they can get at them they are pretty sure to destroy them.”¹ Therefore he suggests, “Do 54
not plant them on horizontal or leaning trunks or branches but on trees or limbs that are vertical and they should be several feet above ground.”¹ We’d add the following advice: get an exterminator! Focused on pest issues he continues, “I have mentioned the rats which sometimes do great damage with orchids and there are nocturnal insects that eat the leaves of some of them which could probably be held in check by spraying according to instructions in the chapter on insects.”¹ Now we know we’ll have the joy of looking forward to that chapter on bugs! As if rats and bugs aren’t problem enough for these gorgeous blooms Mr. Simpson reveals, “The only disease that, so far, has troubled my plants is a blight which breaks out suddenly, mostly in wet weather, and in a short time the leaves look as if they had been dipped in scalding water. Slitting the sheaths that surround the pseudo-bulbs and removing them in case there are indications of trouble is a good thing and thoroughly dusting with sulfur is excellent. Cut away and burn all diseased parts.”¹ Upon reading that directive to dust with sulfur we were immediately intrigued and had to know if this was a method that is still supported today. After researching a little about orchids and their troubles, we found this tidbit of advice about performing surgery on a diseased plant, “dress the edge of the cut with a simple fungicidal material like sulfur or cinnamon…”² So sulfur (and cinnamon even) are apparently advisable fungicides. Cool. Mr. Simpson then shares his experiences with several of the species of orchids he has attempted to grow. He switches gears near the end of the chapter though to discuss the other half of the chapter’s title, bromeliads. He explains, “So far as my experience goes the Bromeliads are better adapted to conditions here than are the epiphytic orchids. In fact in some of the hammocks they grow with such vigor they break down large limbs on which they rest.”¹ He closes the chapter with a summation, “There is an indescribable charm of beauty and strangeness about all these epiphytes, they are so utterly different from what the eyes of northern people are accustomed to, they are fanciful, grotesque, even at times fantastical.” We hope the orchid lovers aren’t appalled by his use of the word grotesque, if so we shall just assume he was referring to bromeliads instead. Regardless, he’s right about the unique design found in these plants and maybe we should try growing some in our hammocks (that’s a joke too). Resources: ¹ Simpson, Charles T. (1926). Ornamental Gardening in Florida. Published by the Author; Little River, FL. Printed by J.J. Little and Ives Company, New York. (p. 66-69) ²http://what-when-how.com/orchids/keeping-your-orchids-pestand-disease-free/ WWW.INTHEFIELDMAGAZINE.COM
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Florida FFA Inducts Five Members to Hall of Fame Photos Courtesy of Ron O’Connor – Farm Credit Five new members were inducted in the Florida FFA Hall of Fame on Sept. 28. The Hall of Fame inductees in 2015 are Hugh Fred Dietrich, III; Teddy Walter Lynn; Franklin Gilbert Bowen; Earl J. Lennard; and Alan L. Fowler
Teddy Walter Lynn helped train many coaches and teams in Florida and throughout the South in forestry, land judging and parliamentary procedure. His Charlotte High School FFA teams have won more Top 5 awards for land judging than any other team in Florida.
The induction ceremony took place at the Florida FFA Leadership Training Center near Haines City.
Franklin Gilbert Bowen served on the Florida FFA Foundation Board of Directors for more than 20 years. He provided funds to build the Bowen Brothers Villa at the Florida FFA Leadership Training Center and to repair the lodge following several hurricanes.
The Florida FFA Hall of Fame began in 2007 to pay tribute to those outstanding individuals who have helped make the Florida FFA Association the premier youth leadership organization in the state. “We are proud to honor these wonderful leaders for their commitment and dedication to the Florida FFA over the years,” said Florida Commissioner of Agriculture Adam H. Putnam. “Their efforts have helped the FFA in our state to better educate students, parents and entire communities about the importance of Florida’s agriculture industry.” Florida FFA Foundation Board of Directors President Bill Hamm said, “These individuals are to be highly commended for their years of service and dedication to the enhancement of agricultural education and FFA.” Some of the contributions of this year’s Florida FFA Hall of Fame inductees are as follows: Hugh Fred Dietrich, III, conceived of the idea for a countywide veterinary animal science magnet program in Orange County, the first of its kind in the county and a model for similar programs across the state. 58
Earl J. Lennard taught agriculture education in Hillsborough County before being appointed supervisor of vocational agriculture in 1979. In 1988, he was appointed assistant superintendent of administration, and later appointed district school superintendent. Alan L. Fowler supervised the Seaboard FFA Forestry Awards Program, which encouraged FFA members across the South to practice forest management principles. Fowler has the distinction of having received the Honorary State Farmer Degree from five southern states. For more information regarding the 2015 Florida FFA Hall of Fame inductees, contact Florida FFA Foundation director Gary Bartley at 863-439-7332 x 6321 or firstname.lastname@example.org. The Florida FFA Association is a resource and support organization that does not select, control, supervise or approve local chapter or individual member activities except as expressly provided for in the Florida FFA Association Constitution and Bylaws. FFA makes a positive difference in the lives of students by developing their potential for premier leadership, personal growth and career success through agricultural education. WWW.INTHEFIELDMAGAZINE.COM
NEW ENTOMOLOGIST JOINS GULF COAST RESEARCH CENTER By Jim Frankowiak Dr. Justin Renkema has joined the faculty of the Gulf Coast Research and Education Center (GCREC) where his research will focus on strawberry entomology. He obtained his doctorate from the Department of Biology at Dalhousie University in Nova Scotia, Canada. Most recently, Dr. Renkema was a Post-Doctoral Fellow in the School of Environmental Sciences at the University of Guelph, Ontario, Canada. He also holds a Master of Science Degree from the Department of Environmental Biology at the University of Guelph and a Bachelor of Science in Biology from Redeemer University College which is located in Ancaster, Ontario, Canada. Born and raised in Blenheim, Ontario, an agricultural community east of the Detroit-Windsor area, Dr. Renkema’s parents both grew up on farms and he was introduced to agriculture through summer jobs de-tasseling corn, picking cucumbers and hoeing weeds. “My dad was an avid hobby gardener and he had my younger sister and brother and I help tend his garden as we were growing up,” he said. As an undergraduate, he had initial plans to become a physician, “but my focus shifted to entomology after I spent a summer as an undergraduate working at a field crop entomology lab. I fell in love with the applied aspects of agricultural research, especially the management of pests.” Dr. Renkema’s areas of research interest include integrated pest management with an emphasis on biological control and the compatibility of bio-control agents and insecticides. “I plan to use molecular tools to evaluate biological control agents, that means the DNA of pests can be detected in the guts of predators to confirm whether or not a predator is effective against a pest. Another area of interest is chemical ecology through which we can determine effects of natural products on pests and pest behavior, including their potential repellency and attractiveness.”
Dr. Nathan Boyd, Associate Professor of Weed Science at the GCREC, made Dr. Renkema aware of the faculty opening at the center. “Dr. Boyd had been a colleague in Nova Scotia and encouraged me to apply,” said Dr. Renkema. “The timing was good as I was nearing the end of my post-doc and began to consider future employment. The job description fit well with my previous experiences with small fruit entomology and I considered this position to be a great opportunity to work with excellent fellow faculty and a staff at a vibrant research center and with an industry that is very supportive of research. The center’s focus on practical applications of research results is also appealing to me. “Over the near term I will become familiar with the pests and pest-related issues here, as well as with Florida strawberry and small fruit production,” he said. “I want to listen to grower and industry needs, determine gaps in understanding of certain pests and begin to close those gaps by building a strong entomology research program. “There is an excellent legacy of small fruit production in Florida. During my career, I hope to contribute to that legacy by providing high-quality research results and the information needed for effective and sustainable pest management. Dr.Renkema is married to Katherine, who is completing her doctorate in Urban Planning at the University of Toronto next year. They are the parents of 13-month-old Roselle and currently reside in the Fishhawk Ranch community. The Renkema’s enjoy being outdoors camping, canoeing and hiking. Additionally, Dr. Renkema enjoys sports, especially tennis and basketball. He was a member of his high school and college basketball teams. For additional information about Dr. Renkema and his research, visit the faculty area at: http://gcrec.ifas.ufl.edu. You may also contact him via email at: Justin.Renkema@ufl.edu or by telephone: 813-633-4117.
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MANAGING HUMAN RESOURCES AND MORE FOR FANCY FARMS By Jim Frankowiak
If German Bedolla worked in a typical corporate setting, he would be part of the Human Resources Department, but he works outside as part of the management team at Fancy Farms, working closely with Carl and Dee Dee Grooms and their son Dustin. Bedolla is responsible for training, managing and overseeing the workers for the Grooms’ strawberry growing operation, a position he has held for nearly a decade. Yes, in some respects it is like a corporate job in HR, but for Bedolla it’s more. “I love being able to work outdoors and I look forward to work every day and accomplishing something,” said Bedolla, who moved with his family from south central Mexico to the United States in the mid 80s. He joined the Fancy Farms team nine years ago with responsibility for supervising workers in the field, a job that has become more complex each season. Formerly, strawberry growers relied on the same domestic workers from year to year and season to season, but that has changed. “We just don’t have the same group of seasonal workers anymore and while we still have some of the same workers from the past, the few other domestic workers available to us cannot be counted on to be here at the fields when they are needed,” said Grooms, whose family has been farming since the early 1900s. That’s especially important at harvest time when the strawberries are ready to be picked and shipped off to market. “We simply can’t wait, those berries have to be picked at that time,” said Grooms. To fill the gap, the U.S. Department of Labor came up with the H-2A visa program that allows foreign nationals entry into the U.S. for temporary or seasonal agricultural work. There are a number of requirements employers such as Grooms must meet and adhere to in regard to this program. Currently, there are an estimated 30,000 temporary or seasonal workers in the U.S. under this program. “This is a costly option for growers, but we have no viable alternative at this time,” said Grooms. “We essentially have responsibility for H2-A workers from the time they leave their homelands until they return. That includes their housing and transportation, plus guaranteed wages.” Growers, like Grooms, are subject to unannounced verification that all program criteria are being met at all times. And while these workers have agreed to terms of the H2-A program, these
experienced agricultural workers still need guidance and this is where Bedolla takes over. “We train them and watch them to be sure they are following all of our instructions,” he said. “It would be nice if we had the same workers season to season, but that doesn’t happen.” That means Bedolla has a new “opportunity” every season to train a new group of H2-A workers and oversee them as they learn about the many steps to growing a successful strawberry crop. During the season the number of employees at Fancy Farms, both domestic and H2-A ranges from 50 to well over 200 at harvest time, and Bedolla is charged with their training, if needed, and supervision all throughout the season. “German is very conscientious and always on top of everything,” noted Grooms. “He not only helps train and supervise our field workers, but he helps in other areas, as well. He is a valued member of our team.” Those other areas include irrigation, equipment operation and repair and others. “Whatever it takes to get the job done, when it needs to get done,” said Grooms. The feeling is definitely mutual for Bedolla, who is married and the father of two grown and married daughters: Cayla and Lindy. German’s wife Cynthia has had three major health care battles over the years. “Carl and Dee Dee have been very understanding and helpful during the times when my wife needed medical assistance,” he said. If that meant time away from the fields, that was okay. “It was the right thing for us to do,” said Grooms. A homeowner in the Springhead area, Bedolla and his family enjoy traveling to the Daytona area, as well as Marietta, Georgia where German’s family now resides. “I also like to play golf every once and a while, too, even though I’m not very good at it,” he said. “Being outdoors and having fun with friends, that’s the best.”
Dexter was found wandering, alone and hungry by a Good Samaritan who took him in. One of the Second Chance volunteers agreed to foster him. We tried to find his owners, but sadly, nobody came looking for this handsome boy. Dexter is a Rottweiler mix and weighs in at a compact 50 pounds. He is very friendly with dogs, kids and adults. Dexter is about 2.5 years old and loves to PLAY. Second Chance Boxer Rescue and Second Chance Friends makes every dog we take in a solemn promise – to find the absolute best home for them where they will be loved and cared for all the rest of their lives. Is your home lacking a dog? Are you ready to change the life of a dog that has been discarded? Please visit us at www.saveaboxer.org to see if your dog is waiting for you to make that promise a reality. 64
HIGHLANDS PACKAGING COMPANY NATIONAL BLUEBERRY CHAMPIONS TWO YEARS IN A ROW For the second year in a row Highlands Packaging in Plant City sold more blueberry packaging than any other company in North America. To celebrate this years success, Steve Maxwell CEO, staged a special luncheon for his staff of more than 265. Steve said, “We like to celebrate achievement around here. All of our employees are Champions.” Steve Maxell spoke at the luncheon about the Company’s Core Principles, which are: 1 – Customers First. 2 – Pass negatives up and positives down. 3 – Believe there is nothing to difficult if we as a team believe and work together. 4 – Team before self. 5 – Do unto others as you would have them do unto you. 6 – Always strive fore excellence. He closed by saying, “Instead of praying ‘God Bless Me’ we should pray, ‘God show me how to be a blessing to someone else today’!”
Florida Strawberry Festival Announces 2016 Theme
The Florida Strawberry Festival released the theme for its 81st annual event – “Royal Fun for Everyone!” “Our festival and the city of Plant City hold the strawberry in high regard,” said General Manager Paul Davis. “So we thought it would be fitting to play off of that with a theme portraying the strawberry as royalty.” A new theme is created for each year’s festival to offer patrons a glimpse of the experience they will have at the 11 day event. It also unifies vendors, FFA chapters, organizations, corporate partners and exhibitors who create parade floats and displays throughout the event, said Davis. The festival’s strawberry character featured in each year’s theme artwork is an iconic part of the event’s branding and advertising efforts. In this theme’s artwork, he wears a crown and holds a scepter and a bowl of strawberries. “We feel like this is a theme that our community will really enjoy,” said Davis.
Exhibitors Selected for Festival’s Swine Show March 3-13, 2016 John Aubrey Dixie-Lee Bailey Jenna Baker Jade Banks John Banks Ashlyn Barror Haley Bell Ashton Boatwright Ashton Boock Zachary Bozeman Lynzi Butler Russell Butler Charlotte Byrnes Brooke Callis Rachel Carter Morgan Chancey Chance Christie Payten Christie Maddox Connell Shawn Connell Shalee Conrad Rhet Conyers Haley Courtney Kaylee Devane 66
Matthew Diem Hayley Duckson Gracie Rae Dyer Chase Farris Katrina Fehrenbacher Delaney Flowers Elizabeth Ford Sierra Francis Emma Grace Futch Zachary Gailey Grace Gainer Ryan Gardner Morgan Gill Elise Griffin Sierra Haight Cole Hanson Jessica Harris Will Haxton Brady Helmer Trevor Hinton Wyatt Hinton Reno Holt Hannah Jacobe Sean Johnson October 2015
Mark Jordan Jayde Kicklighter Emma Leiss Emily Linton Cecily Llauger Joel Lopez Haleigh McDaniel Cooper McDonald Justin McQuaig Emma Miller Madison Morris Julianne Ream Jessica Reasor Shayde Robbins Zachary Salter Paige Schelb Samuel Shiver Hannah Simmons Tristan Simmons Emma Stephens Mary-Catherine Stephens Shelby Stone Taryn Storter Dallas Stoy
Jessica Strom Brenna Sturgis Eli Swint John Thompson Raegan Tucker Dalton Vanderford Nicholas Vitelli Charles Watson Sydney Watson Chelsea Woodard Corbett Wyatt Brooklyn Zajac McKenzie Weeks
Jim Dorman at Charlieâ€™s Plant Farm, Inc | (813) 601-2540
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Enjoying The Local Harvest By Libby Hopkins Keeping things local and being a part of the community are things that are extremely important to John and Jeff Wolfe. The twin brothers were born and raised in Riverview and agriculture has played a big role in their lives. “We were raised around agriculture and joined FFA in seventh grade” Jeff said. “We stayed with FFA all through high school.” The two brothers have always wanted to own an agriculture related business so when the opportunity came along in 2008 they moved on it and they opened Wolfe’s Produce Market in Riverview. “It’s just something we got in to and it took off,” Wolfe said. “We are extremely blessed to be a part of the Riverview community.” The market features fresh local produce, hot boiled peanuts, local honey, pumpkins, kettle corn, Christmas trees and so much more. The brothers have a theme for their produce stand .It is “Enjoy your local harvest.” They say this because they work with many local farmers and food brokers to bring fresh local produce to their produce market everyday. “What we like most about this is that we get to deal with a lot of local vendors and growers so, we get to pick and choose the best of the best,” Wolfe said. “This also gives us the opportunity to know what we are getting and we also get to build relationships with the vendors and farmers.” There are many benefits to buying fresh local produce from produce markets like Wolfe’s Produce Market. First and foremost, you are supporting your local farmers and economy. You also get to know where your food is coming from and you get to know the owners on a personal level. Produce vendors like the Wolfe brothers can also make recommendations on how to prepare their products or even give you tips on how to pick the best products from their market. “We always offer help on how to pick the best produce that is in season when you come to our market,” Wolfe said. You are also getting fresh fruits and vegetables that are full of antioxidants and phytonutrients.
Wolfe’s Produce Market also offers a variety of homemade jam and salsa from a local vendor. These relationships they’ve built with other local produce growers, vendors and community members helped them in their time of need in March of 2011 when a tornado hit their produce stand. The tornado destroyed the stand and all the produce. “It was a small tornado, about F1, but it wiped out everything we had,” Wolfe said. The different food brokers they purchased food from gave the brothers credit at their businesses so they could focus on rebuilding their stand. “We were so appreciative of all their support and the help from the community we got because it helped us get back on our feet,” Wolfe said. The brothers also love having a business in the area where they grew up and they give back to their community when they can. One of the ways they do this by hosting a pumpkin patch and hayride every October. Even though it doesn’t feel much like fall in Florida, pumpkin patches have become quite a tradition in many states. Pumpkin patches have a quite an interesting history. According to the website, Granny Retreat (www.grannyretreat.com) “The Celtics that lived in what is now Great Britain and Northern France would carry a lantern when they walked on the eve of Oct. 31st. These lanterns were carved out of big turnips and the lights were believed to keep the evil spirits away. Children would carve faces in the turnips and they called them jack-o-lanterns. Legends have it that the jack-o-lantern got its name from a stingy and mean old man, named Jack, who when he died was too mean to get into Heaven. When Jack went to Hell, he was met by the Devil who gave him a piece of burning coal and sent him away. Jack placed the burning coal in a turnip and used it as a lantern to light his way. The legend claims that Jack is still walking with the lantern looking for a place to stay.” The website also says that when European settlers came to America they found the big, round orange pumpkins in local markets. Being larger and much more colorful than turnips, the pumpkin made WWW.INTHEFIELDMAGAZINE.COM
great jack-o-lanterns. As the settlers spread across America they took their Halloween celebrations with them. The brothers got the idea of starting a pumpkin patch from all the family trips they took up North when they were kids. “We have family in Tennessee and Ohio and when we would go to visit them while we were on vacation in the fall. There would always be some kind of fall festival, pumpkin patch or hayride going on while we were visiting.” Wolfe said. “We really loved them and we wanted to do something like that here in Riverview. We already had the tractors from our other business so we figures, why not merge the two businesses and do something fun and affordable for the fall and the Halloween season.” They started the pumpkin patch and haunted hayrides in 2009. Both the pumpkin patch and haunted hayride have been getting bigger and better ever since. They recruited friends and family to help them build the pumpkin patch at the produce market and the haunted woods on their 13-acre property attached to the produce market. “We wanted to have an affordable family event for Halloween that was fun for all ages,” Wolfe said. Kids and adults of all ages come to the produce market dressed in costumes and take pictures at the largest pumpkin patch in the area. The haunted hayride costs $7 a person and tickets can be purchased at the produce market the day of the ride or in advance. They hold the haunted hayrides in the weeks leading up to Halloween. “We have the hayrides on nine different nights and we can take about 20 people per ride safely with our tractors,” Wolfe said. “The haunted hayride starts at the pumpkin patch and the ride takes about 10-15 minutes to go through the haunted woods. It’s nothing too scary because it’s kid-friendly but we also keep it interesting so older kids and adults
can enjoy it as well.” When the ride returns to the pumpkin patch guests can enjoy apple cider, candy apples and other Halloween treats at the produce market. The haunted hayride will be held on Oct. 16th, 17th, 18th, 23rd, 24th, 25th, 28th, 29th and 30th. “The pumpkin patch is open on Halloween so families can come in costumes and take pictures if they like,” Wolfe said. They have gotten some great feedback over the years from customers who have been to their pumpkin patch or gone on the haunted hayrides. “People really like it and we are thrilled that they keep coming back year after year to enjoy it,” Wolfe said. “We have a lot of fun hosting the pumpkin patch and the haunted hayride for the Riverview community.” They have groups of adults who come to the pumpkin patch to take a ride on the haunted hayride as well as residents from a local nursing home. “It about family and having a good time during the fall,” Wolfe said. As soon as the Halloween season ends, the brothers change out the produce market again to get ready for the Christmas holidays. They offer the Riverview community a wide selection of Christmas trees. “We have Christmas trees in all different sizes, from 2ft. to 20ft. we have it all,” Wolfe said. If you would like to learn more about Wolfe’s Produce Market, you can visit their Facebook page at www.facebook.com/WolfesProduce-Market or give Jeff Wolfe a call at 813-927-2203. Wolfe’s Produce Market is located at 6005 US Hwy 301 South in Riverview. They are open seven days a week from 8:30 a.m. to 7 p.m. and they take cash, credit cards and food stamps. They are closed on all major holidays.
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By Ginny Mink
Duck, Duck, Not
Have you ever had one of those days (weeks, months, years) that you wish could be a do over? One in which you had grandiose plans and yet they all fell flat? Let me introduce you then to this month’s Meet the Minks! So, as many of you know, I have been desperately seeking out a rabbitry. I thought I’d found a potential in a friend who owns meat rabbits but unfortunately the heat has been far too dangerous for their wee little lives. Then, having discovered one advertised via our oh-so-marvelous FB, I once again allowed hope to intrude. Unfortunately, that lovely lady informed me that she was no longer in the rabbit breeding business. What else could I do but hope to take my kids somewhere to feed ducks? Ha! I asked around and was informed that Dover Park had ducks and so following a lovely bout with western day at Hazel’s VPK, me and my darling brood headed to the park. We were all wearing our boots (I recently acquired a pair of Ariat Fatbaby’s). Zeke doesn’t actually have his own pair of boots so he was wearing a pair of Hazel’s (on the wrong feet). We brought some bread with us (yes, I read some opinions about feeding ducks bread and don’t worry, we weren’t going to feed them a lot). That all said, we walked out to the lake path and started our trek. The kids were quickly enamored by the pinecones as they don’t generally see them in our 50 home subdivision. Zeke loves acorns too and so he was busy collecting them at every opportunity. J spotted a giant snail shell down by the water so I sent him down to check it out. It was empty and therefore he brought it up for the kids to see (I didn’t want any gators jumping out and eating my two year old). Hazel preferred all the flitting butterflies and was constantly saying, “Look! A butterfly!” I tried to take some pictures but those buggers are fast! We reached the platform and I sent J up to test the stairs, I’m no wee-woman and I wasn’t interested in putting my foot (and the rest of me) through any loose or weak planks. Poor J. Thankfully, all was well so the three of us followed. Something jumped prior to that though and I think J was more scared than the rest of us as he was closest to the water. From the platform we could see that it was a giant (and I mean humongous) school of fish just hanging out by the water’s edge. Sadly, even from that vantage point it became abundantly clear that there were no ducks to be fed. Therefore the fish enjoyed a few balls of bread amongst themselves and down we went again. As we walked, still hoping to get a glimpse of something cool, I noticed that Zeke was walking funny. He’s recently potty trained and thusly an odd walk will catch your attention. However, his walk was wacky because he was wearing Hazel’s boots, on the wrong feet, 74
with no socks! Yep. I asked him what was wrong and he said, “My feets are hurtin’ me!” So off went the boots. At which point Hazel determined that her boots were hurting as well and so barefoot she became. Talk about feeling ridiculous and hugely disappointed. Here were my lovelies walking barefoot in a park that was supposed to have ducks and all we’d managed to see were fish, snail shells and butterflies. “It was great!” Hazel told me later and I guess that makes this whole endeavor worthwhile. Determined of course, for my children to experience the joy of ducks (minus the feeding) I had made up my mind that morning to purchase some ducklings for a dear and read that DEAR friend of mine who has a pond on her property. She has always wanted ducks and was so thrilled when a family of them showed up in her yard during that crazy rainy month we had recently. However, they left with the rain and therefore I decided she would no longer be duckless. I stopped at Harold’s that morning, having not seen any and was informed they were expecting some the same day. They called to let me know the ducks were in so we left the park to pick some up. The kids were enamored by the chicks more than the ducks (mostly because they could stick their fingers through the holes in the cages and touch them). In the duck cage J pointed out two that he said were camouflaged. These just happened to be the two I thought were the cutest. J, on the other hand, was more drawn to the black and yellow ones. Initially I had decided I would only get two but since he really liked the black and yellow I figured my friend needed three ducks (one from each kid). We made our duck and food purchase and headed to her house. The look of happiness that flooded her face was worth every penny of long day and messed up plans. She let the kids hold and pet the ducklings. “They’re so soft,” J announced to me as he held a wee little camo one. Hazel almost dropped hers as they are quite squirmy little things. Zeke just told me, “She didn’t let me hold it!” when I asked him about the duck experience. I explained to him her reasoning and he smiled, beaming, “I pet it though!” While this wasn’t exactly the duck encounter I was hoping for, I’m glad my kids actually got to touch them and I was able to bless someone quite dear to my heart with something she’s desired for a while. Dover Park is actually pretty nice (as far as the lake path goes) and they allow fishing so that’s pretty cool. We’ll probably go back so J can fish. That all said, if you have a farm, a nursery, a rabbitry… anything of interest, please get in contact with me so that you can Meet the Minks and I can write about it! My email is: ginnymink@ gmail.com. I look forward to hearing from you. WWW.INTHEFIELDMAGAZINE.COM
The Buzz is All About: P&B Honey By Ginny Mink We came across a family of bee enthusiasts at least three generations deep but that’s not the most interesting aspect of their story. Jelena Runjaic, of P&B Honey, took some time out of her day to talk with us. She shared, “We’re from Croatia, we were all born there. Beekeeping has honestly been in my family for three generations at least now. My dad (Pajo) started when he was a child and came over into the states and kind of got into the grind, you know, of get a job, get paid. Eventually he started building up some money and some time so he could start beekeeping here as well. Then it just started as a hobby. He would give away the honey during Christmas and holidays to people. So you know it would save some money there because he didn’t have to buy presents. Then he realized that he could make a business from it and then started at the flea market selling his honey.” You can find them at Big Top Flea Market in Building L. Since they’re from Croatia, we wondered what the difference was in the way bees were kept. She told us, “I was only five when I was there, so I can’t really remember much about it. I saw the hives while I was there last summer and I know that they’re kind of old fashioned hives. They still have some remaining, kind of half circle, called skep bee hives. They’re old fashioned straw beehives. That’s primarily what they used but I’m pretty sure the process is the same. They would extract the honey twice a year. There was obviously way more wild flowers over there. It’s out in the countryside, it’s all open and pretty much everybody over there had at least one hive of bees. Everybody had the room for it and it was pretty low maintenance. I just went there this summer and I saw one guy had at least 30 hives of bees out in his backyard.” Everybody has bees? We were shocked! Then she gave us a little history, “My dad did pretty well over there, too. I remember he was thinking about opening up a business while we were there and then the war hit so he never really got the chance to do that. It was really picking up. He was selling products from the beehives and doing really well for himself. While he was there it started getting big enough that he was thinking about opening this little store and selling farm products. I know they had cows and all that stuff going on at the same time. And also to sell some of his honey products, so that was all in the works before the war broke out.” The war was a terrible thing for all involved. So, we wondered if she might tell us something more about Croatia. She shared, “A lot of the most recent stuff is all tragic stuff so I’m trying to think of something cool. Well, it’s a beautiful country. Most of it is along the Adriatic Sea, so it’s beautiful for vacationing. They’ve got beautiful beaches. One of their most famous cities is Dubrovnik, and it’s one of the most beautiful places I’ve ever been. You can just see orange topped roofs. It was actually a war torn area during the 90s because of the civil war. But they eventually started rebuilding and now it’s a hustling and bustling tourist town. People are constantly moving in and out. Overall the country’s really beautiful. The people are really hospitable. You can try some really great food while you’re there, maybe gain a few pounds.” She chuckled. So what about P&B Honey? She shared, “We have about 30 hives. We have some in our backyard in Temple Terrace and the rest are in Seffner. We have them at a friend’s house, he’s got a lot of farmland over there. A lot of his neighbors do too. So I think they’re on like three acres, at least, of land. When he needs to extract the honey he brings them over here in his giant van and then we put them in the centrifuge and that’s pretty much it.” WWW.INTHEFIELDMAGAZINE.COM
We asked if they sold anything besides the honey and she told us, “We sell bee pollen which we take just from the bees as they’re walking into the hive. We have this little catch net that they walk through and then it takes the pollen off their legs and drops it down. We sell propolis and that’s gathered from the hive. They actually use it as a coating for the hive to keep bacteria out, to keep other bugs out. And we can get it into a solid form, break it up and dissolve it in water or alcohol and that’s actually used as an antiseptic or you can ingest it and it’s supposed to improve your immune system. We’ve got beeswax candles coming out too now. I just started making some using our old beeswax and they’re selling pretty well.” What does Jelena enjoy the most about beekeeping? She revealed, “I personally like the environmental side of it more because I know that they are going through colony collapse disorder. So although we are making some money off of it and selling it, we’re keeping people healthy. We’re keeping our planet sustainable because the bees are doing everything we need with cross pollination and just making sure that we have food at all times. I think it’s really a dying business and I’m glad we get to be a part of that.” Since we are an agriculture magazine, we asked Jelena if they were doing any work with local farmers to help with cross pollination of their fields. She got really excited and told us, “My dad’s actually been looking around. He’s trying to see if there are any orange groves or anything like that. One of them was Brazilian pepper ‘cause I know they really like Brazilian pepper. So he was keeping an eye out to see, but he’s got another full time job and then trying to sustain this small business. It gets a little complicated, especially with the language barrier. You know, talking to people and getting the word out, asking • Increase Fertilizer Efficiency people if they’ve got any land. • Improve Turf Density and Vigor We’re in the process of trying to • Reduce Re-treats find people who can make that happen.” So, if you’re looking for bees for your farm/crops give Jelena a call: (813) 985-1829. In case you missed the contact information above, here’s the whole story: You can meet them at the Big Top Flea Market in Building L or you can call Jelena at: (813) 985-1829. They also accept visitors at their home if you call ahead. The address is: 5015 Chilkoot Street, Tampa 33617. INTHEFIELD MAGAZINE
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Giving back to our communities is
Mike Bennett, Supply Chain Operator, Florida phosphate operations
As a DeSoto County resident and operator in Mosaic’s supply chain team, I help ensure our phosphate crop nutrients get to farmers in America and all over the world. At Mosaic, we share our passion for agriculture and environmental stewardship with the next generation of local farmers and ranchers. In fact, I’m one of hundreds of Mosaic employees who volunteer annually with youth agriculture organizations and at county fairs. For me, giving back is more than a job. It’s about nourishing the communities where we all live, work and play.
We help the world grow the food it needs.
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PALADIN SOIL FUMIGANT: One of Few Alternatives to Methyl Bromide Addressing Both Grower Needs and Neighbor Relations The Montreal Protocol on Substances that Deplete the Ozone Layer is an international treaty designed to protect the ozone layer by phasing out the production of numerous substances that are responsible for ozone depletion. On the positive side, the ozone hole in Antarctica is slowly recovering. Climate projections indicate that the ozone layer will return to 1980 levels between 2050 and 2070. Overall, the protocol is regarded by some as “the single most successful international agreement to date.” However for certain commodity growers, including strawberry growers in the Plant City area, the Montreal Protocol signified the beginning of the end for methyl bromide (MeBr), a highly effective pre-plant fumigant used by growers to control or suppress weeds, soil-borne plant pathogens and nematodes in soils where fruit crops and vegetables are to be planted. The Montreal Protocol banned the use of methyl bromide and left growers scrambling to find an effective alternative. In Florida, the two crops most impacted were strawberries and tomatoes. In anticipation of this action relative to methyl bromide Arkema, a global chemical company and France’s leading chemical producer, began work in 2000 to develop a viable alternative to methyl bromide that matched the attributes of MeBr and its costs to growers. Arkema has operations in 50 countries with 19,000 employees and research centers in North America, France and Asia. In North America, Arkema Inc., a subsidiary of Arkema, is headquartered in King of Prussia, PA, employing 2,400 people and operating 34 sites in the U.S., Canada, Mexico and Brazil. “Our commitment to develop and produce an alternative to methyl bromide led to the introduction of Paladin®, a pre-plant soil fumigant that has proven to be as effective as methyl bromide, lower in price and less toxic with no ozone depleting characteristics. This new fumigant is registered by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency as a restricted use pesticide to be used only by Certified Applicators,” said Arkema’s Andrew Horvath. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) requires a Fumigant Management Plan for each Paladin fumigant application. Paladin formulations are available for both shank and drip applications. “Plant City area strawberry growers use 78
the shank application method in which the fumigant is injected directly into the soil through knives and the fields are immediately covered by tarps,” he said. “After 21-days, growers then begin to plant by cutting holes in the tarp enabling workers to plant the strawberries. “Paladin is made from Dimethyl Disulfide (DMDS), a naturally occurring compound that can be found in many of the foods we eat such as garlic, onions, cheese, beer, broccoli and others. It is also a by-product of many natural processes. It has the lowest toxicity of any soil fumigant approved as a methyl bromide replacement. It is also less toxic than any soil fumigant growers have used in the past even though those products were odorless. Paladin’s odor has been characterized as being ‘garlic-like’, or ‘gas-odor-like’, and can be detected at very low concentrations. This low odor threshold is why similar molecules are used as odorants to aid in the recognition of gas leaks,” said Horvath. Paladin realized broad market adoption by local strawberry growers two years ago. At that time, field applications were covered by a virtually impermeable film (VIF) since totally impermeable film (TIF) had not been approved for use. There were odor complaints from residents living proximate to fields where Paladin was applied. “Last year, TIF was used exclusively as mandated by the product label change we made, resulting in a significant reduction in odor complaints. Additionally, we continue to study ways to reduce and hopefully eliminate the odor sometimes associated with Paladin use as part of our commitment to product stewardship.” Paladin has proven to be an effective alternative to methyl bromide and is an option commodity growers in Florida want to keep in their “tool box” for continued use. Attesting to its effectiveness is the repeat use of Paladin by growers across Florida, including Plant City area strawberry growers, again this season. “The elimination of methyl bromide as a fumigant for use by our growers has been a substantial challenge to overcome,” said Florida Strawberry Growers Association Executive Director Kenneth Parker. “Paladin is one of seven products our growers currently have available to meet various pressures in the local soils.” WWW.INTHEFIELDMAGAZINE.COM
“At the same time, our industry recognizes the need to be mindful of our neighbors and to take appropriate actions in that regard. Arkema, just as the other companies who work with our growers, has taken steps to reduce the odors associated with Paladin and continues to look at options for further reductions and even complete odor elimination,” said Parker who also expressed appreciation for the ongoing regulatory involvement to help assure compliance.
Paladin in Hillsborough County last season. Hillsborough County’s Environmental Protection Commission independently collected five air samples near the fields during the 2014 fumigation season. None of the twelve hour readings showed off-site concentrations above the minimum detectable limit of approximately 3 parts per billion (PPB). Both Arkema and Hillsborough County are continuing monitoring efforts this season.
In addition to odor complaints, a number of area residents have alleged health issues attributed to the use of Paladin. “The Dover community has been in turmoil since August 2013, at which time Mr. (Ronnie) Young used Paladin as a fumigant for his strawberry fields,” said Mary Zentkovich, a Dover resident. “There have been hundreds of responses from neighbors who have experienced respiratory uses in the form of upper respiratory infections, sinus infections, bronchitis, asthma; swollen lymph glands, so bad that we could not turn our heads; vomiting, including waking up on the middle of the night; diarrhea; nose bleeds; burning eyes; and lung issues, including permanent shortness of breath. All of these things only came after application. Most of these neighbors did not have any of these symptoms before, or to this severe extent.”
The Hillsborough County Environmental Protection Commission (EPC) provided the following response regarding Paladin concerns: “EPC’s mission is ‘To protect the natural resources, environment, and quality of life in Hillsborough County.’ So any time we are contacted regarding a concern about the environment, we do respond and this has been the case with Paladin.”
“He (Mr. Young) used Paladin in 2014 as well. The same above mentioned symptoms occurred again. As stated above, not in the previous months before application did these neighbors have these symptoms. In 2015, there were sick people on Downing, where there were posted signs of Paladin use.” “The FLDH (Florida Department of Health), states in DMDS Health Alert, -- ‘DMDS has an odor threshold of approximately 7 ppb (parts per billion), which is much less than the health-based level considered by the EPA (U.S. Environmental Protection Agency) to be safe (55 ppb). DMDS products generally have a low to moderate toxicity; however, because they are used to control a wide range of pests, large quantities are applied to agricultural fields, making them potentially hazardous.” ‘DMDS may cause irritation of the upper respiratory tract, eyes, and skin. Upper respiratory tract irritation may results in sneezing, coughing, sore throat, dyspnea, chest tightness, and a feeling of suffocation. DMDS has not been shown to cause allergic sensitization, birth defects, reproductive toxicity, or mutagenicity.’ ‘In some individuals, the odor of DMDS may alone cause nausea, headache, and dizziness. Often, these symptoms will fade when the odor goes away.’ ‘Inhalation of chloropicrin, a chemical used along with Paladin, may result in sore throat, coughing, labored breathing, dizziness, nausea, vomiting, bluish skin, and faintness. Chloropicrin is a powerful lachrymator (increases tear production).’ “If this is stated by FLDH, why are farmers allowed to use this!” The Florida Department of Health (FDOH) conducted an investigation of the 66-complaints it had received in 2014 and determined that it was unable to correlate any of the health complaints received with the use of Paladin. This season, FDOH has alerted area healthcare providers to a range of resources they may use in determining the cause of individual health issues during the fumigation period at local strawberry farms, typically the August – September time frame. Arkema monitored the application process at all farms that applied WWW.INTHEFIELDMAGAZINE.COM
“Since the agency received our first call about this soil fumigant’s use, some three years ago, we have established a good working relationship with the Florida Department of Agriculture & Consumer Services (FDACS) and the Florida Department of Health (FDOH). By legislative action, FDACS has sole regulatory authority over most farming practices including the use of pesticides such as Paladin. Thus they are the lead investigative agent regarding the licensing and the application of any pesticide. FDOH on the other hand has assumed the lead for following up on any reported concerns regarding health affects to nearby residents. They issued a full report on their findings this past spring. We have found both agencies to be very responsive.” “As noted, EPC is a local agency and pre-empted by the State of Florida from regulating pesticides. Nonetheless, EPC has conducted some initial off-site verification of any concerns, and in some cases conducted air sampling. Ultimately we report any of our findings to both FDACS and FDOH. We also have attempted to participate in some outreach, direct citizens to the proper regulatory authorities and keep our Board updated.” “Over the last two years we have observed some improved practices intended to lessen any impact on the surrounding communities, and we attribute this to the drop in calls we had from year one to year two in terms of number of households contacting EPC. The pesticide manufacturer, Arkema, has established a real field presence and retrained the applicators. In addition the tarps required by FDACS have been upgraded to Totally Impermeable Film which keeps more of the product in the soil. This has also allowed the applicators to use less of the fumigant to begin with. FDACS has also required Best Management Practices with setbacks and signage.” “Despite all these improvements, EPC stands ready to respond to any calls that we receive this season. We are also conducting additional air sampling,” said Campbell. As of the date this article was written (approximately two weeks after the conclusion of Paladin applications in Hillsborough County) EPC reported receipt of Paladin complaints from a total of 13 households and one business. Complaints are generally received within the 3-5 day period after Paladin is injected into the soil and vaporizes. This season’s figure compares to 23 households complaining during 2013. Arkema maintains and continually updates a “Frequently Asked Questions” page on its Paladin web page: www.Paladin.com/questions-florida. That site also provides a link to the full FDOH report previously referenced. The Paladin Responsible Care Team can also be reached by calling: 800-286-4110. INTHEFIELD MAGAZINE
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Do It Your Self Activity
by Nick Chapman
Recycled Halloween Decoration The weather is cooler, the days are shorter, and thoughts of Halloween decorating are here. This easy “How To” project will let you take an old cow or horse supplement bucket and make it into an easy recycled decoration for Halloween. And you should have everything right on the farm.
Step 1: Preparing your recycled bucket
Most farms feed some type of supplement to their animals, and the buckets are usually thrown in the recycle bin. This project will give that bucket a second life and become an easy and cheap Halloween decoration.
Step 2: Make an easy decoration template for painting
Get an empty bucket and Decide what type of Halloween character you peel off the labels. On most want for a decoration. Print or draw on a piece buckets these will come off of paper and cut out the areas you want to paint. Attach the template to the bucket with tape. easily.
Step 3: Paint and let dry
Paint with the desired color. A quick drying spray paint works best. Watch the overspray if windy. Allow to dry before removing the attached template. Drying time approximately 1015 minutes for spray paint.
Step 5: Attach plastic bag for ghost effect
Attach a draw string plastic garbage bag around the rim of the bucket. Use scissors to cut strips to blow in the wind for an eerie effect. If there is no rim, you can hot glue to the side.
Step 4: Prepare for hanging
Drill holes in top to insert the hanging string or twine. Baling twine works great. Tie a washer or large nut to the underneath side to keep the twine from slipping through the hole.
Step 6: Hang ghost from suitable location
Find an easily accessible tree limb or leave to hang your Halloween ghost.
Now you are ready to be green and spook this Halloween!
813-767-4703 301 South Collins Street, Suite 101, Plant City, Florida 33563
P o rtrait P h o tograp h er Spe c ializ ing in H igh Sc hool Se niors
A Closer Look
Fresh from the farm to your Freezer Fri. & Sat. Oct. 16th & 17th • 8 a.m. - 5 p.m. Fri. & Sat. Nov. 13th & 14th • 8 a.m. - 5 p.m. Call in your order, go on-line or just drop by and see us - Walk-ins are always welcome! *** Most items are 8 lbs. unless otherwise noted and have been shelled, blanched and frozen. ***
Fordhooks..........................$22 Baby Butter Beans............$16 Edamame Beans...............$16 Green Beans......................$15 Pole Beans.........................$15 Speckled Butter Beans....$15 Blackeye Peas....................$15 Blac Butter Peas........................$15 Crowder Peas....................$15 Green Peas.........................$15 Pinkeye Peas.....................$15 White Acres Peas..............$18 Zipper Peas........................$15 Sugar Snap Peas...............$15 White Corn........................$14 Yellow Corn.......................$14 Cream White Corn 4#.......$ 6 Cream Yellow Corn 4#......$ 6 Collard Greens..................$14
Mustard Greens.................$14 Turnip Greens....................$14 Spinach...............................$14 Kale......................................$14 Cut Okra..............................$15 Breaded Okra.....................$15 Whole Okra........................$15 Sliced Yellow Squash........$15 Sliced Zucchini.................. $15 Sweet Potato Chunks.......$15 Brussell Sprouts................ $15 Baby Carrots...................... $15 Broccoli............................... $15 Cauli�ower......................... $15 Mixed Vegetables............. $15 Soup Blend........................ $15 White Potatoes (small).....$15
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Southwestern Produce Company 1510 SYDNEY RD. • PLANT CITY, FL.
Rhubarb 5#........................ $15 Blueberries 5#................... $15 Blackberries 5#................. $15 Raspberries 5#.................. $15 Cranberries 5#.................. $15 Peaches.............................. $18 Whole Strawberries 5#.... $15 Pineapple Chunks 5#....... $15 Mango Chunks 5#............ $15 Dark Sweet Cherries 5#... $18 Fruit Medley 5#................ $15 Green Peanuts................... $15
Watch for our: FRESH GEORGIA PECANS Coming in November
(813)754-1500 • (813)757-0096 www.SouthwesternProduce.com INTHEFIELD MAGAZINE
By Libby Hopkins Do you put hot sauce on everything you eat? Do you carry your own personal bottle of hot sauce with you at all times? Do you feel that the warning labels on hot sauce bottles are a challenge for you? If you answered “yes” to all these questions, you may be a hot sauce addict. It’s o.k. because Jason Droor has just what you need to feed your hot sauce addiction. Droor is the owner of a hot sauce and jam company called Jason’s Fire Fusion. “I’m pretty much a crazy nerd with a passion for spicy food,” Droor said. “I was originally a theoretical physics major before I dropped out of college to do something I’m more passionate about and I never looked back.” Droor got his start by growing peppers. He was growing some very hot peppers, ones too hot to be eaten whole by most sane human beings. “I started out with no clue what I was doing, only knowing what I didn’t like about traditional hot sauces, namely the ultra high sodium content and generally not enough flavor,” Droor said. He started experimenting with basic hot sauce recipes he found on the Internet. He soon realized none of these online recipes seem to have that special kick, nor were they very tasty. “So, I set out to do things differently,” Droor said. “I invented a lot of my methodology myself and my recipes are the result of extensive trial and error. I didn’t even consider going professional until I had recipes good enough for me to put my face on the bottle.” Fast-forward through a few months of refining and perfecting, he now has a line of unique gourmet hot sauces and jams. The sauces are consciously made to be as healthy as possible, with no more salt than is absolutely needed. All of Droor’s sauces are hand-made by himself and they are made in small batches, using just a blender, two pots, a ladle, and a funnel. “I insist upon using fresh ingredients, so almost everything that goes into my sauces come from local farmers’ markets,” Droor said. “They are hand-selected by me for peak freshness and ripeness, because the best ingredients make the best tasting sauces. They are natural, no GMO’s and gluten free.” Some of Droor’s hot sauces have names like “Chocolate Scorpion,” which is made from the Trinidadian chocolate scorpion pepper, named for its dark brown color. There’s a small amount of dark 88
chocolate in the sauce, giving it a complex flavor. Another is called “Spontaneous Combustion,” which is an outrageously hot sauce, balanced with an unreasonable amount of flavor, or there is “Pirate’s Ghost,” which is a sauce that is filled with smoky flavor, and the taste of rum. Droor made this sauce with fire roasted ghost peppers for an unforgettable burn. His newest sauce is called “Pirate’s Revenge,” which he calls a hotter version 2.0 of “Pirate’s Ghost” that has the same great flavor, but different peppers. He also makes a spicy strawberry jam, which he is gearing up to start making again once Florida strawberry season is in full swing. “I do make a spicy strawberry jam but I discontinued if for the summer so my supply of local strawberries would be available for the holiday season,” Droor said. “I get my strawberries from South Heritage Farms in Dover. I hope to set up as a vendor at the Strawberry Festival this year.” His sauces are available at the Ybor Daily Market in Ybor City, Jug & Bottle in Seminole Heights and at Revolution Ice Cream in Brandon. “My ‘Pirate’s Ghost’ sauce is available on amazon.com, with more to follow,” Droor said. “My jams can also be tried as toppings on cheesecake in a jar made by Le’Ann’s Cheesecakes n’More.” The cheesecakes are available at the Ybor Daily Market as well. Shopping local and keeping things local is very important to Droor. “As a small business, supporting the local economy is very important to me,” Droor said. “I get most of my produce from local farmers’ markets. I go to different ones to find the highest quality ingredients.” He grows his peppers for his sauces on his friend’s farm. “They’re weird exotic stuff that is very hard to find unless you have someone grow them specifically for you,” Droor said. If you would like to learn more about Jason’s Fire Fusions or if you would like to purchase some of his sauces or jams, you can visit his website at www.jasonsfirefusions.com. You can also check out his Facebook page at www.facebook.com/jasonsfirefusions to see what new products he will be coming out with in the near future. WWW.INTHEFIELDMAGAZINE.COM
HILLSBOROUGH COUNTY FAIR OFFERS PARTICIPATION AND ENTERTAINMENT OPTIONS FOR ALL AGES By Jim Frankowiak Whether you want to participate in an event or just watch, the annual Hillsborough County Fair has something for you, and that’s you in its broadest sense. “We have a great mix of events for the young and the young at heart,” said the Fair’s Tom Umiker. “That runs the gamut from fashion and beauty competitions to a talent show, arts and crafts and lots more. And if you just want to watch those competitions plus an interesting mix of events, we have that for you, too.” The Hillsborough County Fair is being held over two weekends: October 22 through November 1, but there are no activities during the Monday – Wednesday period and the fairgrounds are closed to the public those days. The Harvest Time Children’s Pageant takes place, Sunday, October 25, and is open to Hillsborough County residents age 12 and under eligible to compete. Contestants compete in age categories: up to 12-months; 13-23 months, 2-3 years, 4-5 years, 6-8 years and 9-12 years. Young ladies may also compete in side events for most photogenic, best attire, prettiest eyes and best smile. Young men can vie for the title of most handsome. The Fair’s annual talent show is open to county residents age 5 and up with competitions for singers, dancers, comedians and jugglers. Performers will be divided into three age categories: Youth (ages 5-15), Adult) ages 16-64) and senior (ages 65 and up). Auditions are to take place Thursday – Friday, October 29 and 30. Applications must be received no later than Monday, October 26. Paid events at this year’s fair include rodeos, truck and tractor pulls and a demolition derby. The fair kicks off October 23 with the Extreme Ranch Rodeo with real ranch hands from across Florida competing “ranch versus ranch.” This competition is held in the eveWWW.INTHEFIELDMAGAZINE.COM
nings of October 23 and 24, beginning at 7 p.m. both nights. It will feature branding, trailer loading, penning and doctoring just like to competitors do every day, but with the added speed and excitement of a true competition. Sunday, October 25, the Bulls and Barrels Rodeo will begin at 3 p.m. It will blend the speed of barrel racing coupled with the brawn and bone-crushing excitement of professional bull riding. The fair’s second weekend will showcase motor sports with Truck and Tractor Pulls spanning the nights of October 30 and 31. Each night the competition will begin at 7 p.m. The popular Demolition Derby is set for Sunday, November 1, starting at 3 p.m. with drivers beating, banging and crashing their cars until only one remains and takes home the $1,000 first prize. Arena events are $10 per person in addition to the regular Fair admission. Those purchasing an arena event ticket in advance at participating ticket outlets get into the fair for free. Fair officials suggest early arrival for arena events since seating is limited to 1,800. In addition to the competitions and arena events, the fair will again offer attendees carnival rides, exhibits, livestock, circus, racing and swimming pigs and the Firefighters show. For more information, registration information and the location of advance sale ticket outlets, visit the Hillsborough County Fair website: www.hillsboroughcountyfair.com. The fair’s office telephone is: 813-737-3247. The Hillsborough County Fair is located east of Brandon on State Road 60 and Sydney Washer Road. INTHEFIELD MAGAZINE
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TIFFANY DALE TO HEAD MEMBER SERVICES AND COMMUNITY RELATIONS FOR FSGA Succeeds Glenda McNary
By Jim Frankowiak
Tiffany C. Dale, a sixth generation Floridian and Florida Strawberry Growers Association (FSGA) volunteer, has been named the associations new Director of Member Services and Community Relations. She succeeds Glenda Sloan McNary, the association’s first employee who recently retired after 33 years of service. Born and raised in Hillsborough County, Dale received her undergraduate degree from the University of Florida’s Department of Agricultural Education and Communication, specializing in Communication and Leadership Development. She returned to the university to complete the Master of Agribusiness Program in the Food and Resource Economics Department in 2012. Upon completion of her master’s degree, Dale accepted a temporary position with the Farm Journal Foundation and Farmers Feeding the World as a mobile marketing associate on the HungerU Tour. This provided her with the opportunity to travel the Midwest, visiting agricultural universities to engage students in the world hunger crisis. She returned to Hillsborough County serving as an agriculture education substitute teacher for Hillsborough County Schools. Dale then joined the staff of the Gulf Coast Research and Education Center as a program coordinator for the agricultural communication and leadership degree option. In that role, Dale had the opportunity to also serve as the Collegiate FFA Advisor at the University of Florida in Plant City. While as a student and after receiving her degrees, Dale has been actively involved with Farm Bureau and the FSGA. “Volunteering in the community and within the agricultural industry, I have gained a great deal of knowledge,” she said. “Community support is paramount to any organization, and giving back is part of that equation. My involvement with an industry that is the second greatest economic driver in our state has been very eye-opening for me.” In addition to offering greater industry insights, volunteerism has led to enhancement of her leadership skills while serving as the Chair for Hillsborough County Farm Bureau’s Young Farmers and Ranchers Committee and through various initiatives with the FSGA.
in action as a volunteer and her education and skills are well matched with the position. In addition, she is already well known within our industry through her volunteer efforts and work with Farm Bureau.” While Dale’s FSGA current job description is very comprehensive, including membership growth and services, as well as educational outreach and other responsibilities, Parker anticipates her role will also include a strong focus on communicating and working closely with legislators and government officials. “This is really an incredible opportunity for me, and one that came about much sooner than I had expected,” said Dale. “I am able to apply my communication and business skills, plus my community networking to an industry that holds great value to me, my upbringing and Florida’s economy. Whether through the Chamber of Commerce, elected officials, agriculturists or special interest groups, agriculture has a wonderful and important story to tell and I am committed to sharing that story.” Dale spends much of her non-working or volunteer time in northern Alabama with her parents and sister. She also enjoys fishing, traveling, baking (especially with strawberries) and spending time with friends. Welcome Tiffany, and thanks Glendie for the recommendation!
The path to her new position began in an interesting way. “When Glenda made the decision to retire from the FSGA, the second thing she told me after announcing her plan to retire was to suggest Tiffany as her replacement,” said FSGA Executive Director Kenneth Parker. “I shared that suggestion to our staff and they all knew Tiffany and felt she would be an asset to the association. “We certainly value Glenda’s opinion, but honestly even if we conducted a very broad search, I truly doubt that we could have found anyone as well-qualified as Tiffany,” said Parker. “We have seen her 92
FLORIDA REPRESENTATIVE HARRISON INVITES DISTRICT 63 STUDENTS TO SUGGEST BILLS FOR THE UPCOMING LEGISLATIVE SESSION By Jim Frankowiak
With the 2016 legislative session just a few months away, many representatives in the state are beginning to file bills for the upcoming session. Representative Shawn Harrison of District 63 has brought a new approach to the process through the introduction of his “That should be a law” contest for students residing in his district. “I wanted to reach out to my constituents and ask for their help,” said Rep. Harrison. “Any K-12 or college students who live in District 63 can contact my office and suggest a bill for me to sponsor in the 2016 legislative session.” The deadline for submittals is December 18. Rep. Harrison said each bill submission should have a title and contain a one paragraph description about why it is needed. Ideas for “That should be a law” can be emailed to Rep. Harrison at shawn.harrison@ myfloirdahouse.gov . Entries may also be mailed to his district office: 15310 Amberly Drive, Suite 215, Tampa, FL 33647. Those wishing to fax entries in the competition may do so by using the fax number: 813/910-3269. Questions may be directed to Rep. Harrison’s district office: 813/910-3277. The boundaries of District 63, generally the north central section of Hillsborough County, are contained in a map available at the Florida House website: http://www.myfloridahouse.gov/Sections/Representatives/details.aspx?Memberid=4510&Legislat iveTermid=86.
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“The reason for the contest is to try to get students involved in the process of government and to educate them on the bill writing procedure through first-hand experience,” he said. Rep. Harrison will personally judge all bills entered in the competition. “I will pick one winner and that person will have the opportunity to come to Tallahassee with me to help me present the bill during the 2016 legislative session,” he said. Married to Susan and the father of SarahCate and Ethan, Rep. Harrison is a practicing attorney. He was elected to the Florida House in 2014, and had served in the House during 2010-2012, Rep. Harrison was also a member of the Tampa City Council during 1999-2007. A native of Anderson, Indiana, Rep. Harrison moved to Florida in 1983 and received his undergraduate degree from the University of South Florida and his Juris Doctor, legal degree, from the University of Florida. His current committee assignments in the Florida House include: Economic Development & tourism, Health Care Appropriations, K-12 and State Affairs. Rep. Harrison is involved with the Boy Scouts of America, New Tampa Fire District, where he serves as chairman; and he also serves as a trustee of Tampa’s Lowry Park Zoo. His recreational pursuits include biking, golf and other outdoor activities.
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FALL GARDENING ‘TO DO’ LIST Lynn Barber, FFL Agent, UF/IFAS Extension Hillsborough County
Either you love or hate ‘to do’ lists. I love lists and have them in every possible location. For those of you that love lists, too, here’s my list of fall ‘to do’s’: • Water less: Decrease landscape irrigation frequency. Consider turning off (yes, that’s really a setting) your irrigation controller and watering only when plants need water. You can attend a Water-Wise Workshop at the UF/IFAS Extension Hillsborough County office and receive a microirrigation kit which uses less water, applies water where plants need it, which is at the root zone, and does not lose water due to evaporation. • Mulch more frequently and as needed: Mulch retains soil moisture, regulates soil temperature, adds nutrients to the soil as it decomposes, suppresses weed growth, reduces stormwater runoff and erosion, improves soil structure, enhances the beauty of your landscape, provides increased area for root growth and protects plants from lawnmowers and weed eaters. And, it is prettier than sand. Mulch should be two to three inches deep after it settles. Melaleuca (Punk tree) is an excellent mulch selection that is produced from an invasive, non-native plant. This mulch has high termite resistance, almost no settling in the first year and retains color in year one. How do I know how many bags to buy? Easy! See the chart below:
The ‘Florida Vegetable Gardening Guide’, by Sydney Park Brown, J. M. Stephens, Danielle Treadwell, Susan Webb, Amanda Gevens, R. A. Dunn, G. Kidder, D. Short, and G. W. Simone, is another excellent resource which can be viewed at: http://edis.ifas.ufl.edu/ vh021. • Insect control: Check for pests and handle accordingly. The most challenging aspect of controlling insects can well be proper identification of the pest, which is critical to selecting the proper method of control. The control methods include: cultural (lawn and landscape plant selection and maintenance), mechanical (hand or other method of removal), biological (use of beneficial insects and natural pest enemies) and chemical (spot treat the affected plant/area only and use natural/environmental friendly products). And, remember, there are many environmentally safe pest solutions available. • Divide and conquer your perennials: Dividing clumping perennials is a great way to spread their beauty throughout your landscape. You can also ‘gift’ them to a special friend or neighbor. • Cuttings for spring: Take cuttings of plants that won’t survive the winter outdoors. This is a great way to start your spring plant collection in your home, on your lanai or porch, depending on the temperatures. • Relocate houseplants: If your houseplants were outside for the summer and early fall, it’s time to consider bringing them inside your home before temperatures dip below 55 degrees F. Fall is a great time to handle work in your landscape. The heat, humidity and thunderstorms of summer have moved on and it’s much more pleasant to do what needs to be done.
Directions: 1) Determine the square foot measurement of the area to be mulched. Example: 4 feet x 25 feet = 100 square feet 2) Determine desired depth of mulch, then convert from inches to a fraction of a foot. Example: 3 inches deep = 1/4 foot 3) Multiply fraction from Step 2 by the square foot measurement of area to be covered. Example: 1/4 foot x 100 square feet = 25 cubic feet 4) One cubic yard equals 27 cubic feet (3 ft. x 3 ft. x 3 ft.). Bagged mulch is available in volumes such as 2 cubic feet. Using the example, you can determine how many bags to buy and how much mulch to apply. Example: 25 cubic feet to mulch; 2 cubic feet of mulch in 1 bag = 12.5 bags. You would buy 13 bags of mulch. • Plant: You can plant fall vegetables (beet, broccoli, cabbage, carrot, kale, lettuce and more). It’s a great time to plant shrubs and trees that are cold-hardy. November is the last month to plant strawberries. For more information on what you can plant and when, please see the information below about the ‘Central Florida Gardening Calendar’. 94 94
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To view an on-line copy of the University of Florida publication, Central Florida Gardening Calendar, by Sydney Park Brown, please go to: http://edis.ifas.ufl.edu/ep450. This article provides information on a month-by-month basis regarding what to plant and what to do each month of the year in your landscape. For example, in the month of November under What to Plant, bedding plants, bulbs, herbs and vegetables are listed that can be successfully planted during this month. Under What to Do, information is provided on propagation of perennials, what to watch for in the area of fungal disease, how to manage scale insects, what to look for on your Poinsettias, which types of turfgrass to fertilizer during this month and how to manage your inground irrigation system. The Central Florida Gardening Calendar includes publication tiles and web addresses that relate to the monthly to-do topics. For more information about the Florida-Friendly LandscapingTM Program or for assistance with gardening related questions, contact the UF/IFAS Extension Hillsborough County at 813-744-5519, visit us at 5339 County Road 579, Seffner, FL 33584 or http://hillsborough./ifas.ufl.edu. We hope you will stop by to stroll through the Bette S. Walker Discovery Garden in our office courtyard. WWW.IIN NTTHE HEF FIELD IELDM MAGAZINE.COM AGAZINE.COM WWW.
Pesticide Exposure and Poisoning: Part 3 by Susan Haddock, Commercial Landscape/IPM/Small/ Farms Agent, UF/IFAS Extension Hillsborough County
Using pesticides carries an inherent risk of pesticide exposure and potential poisoning. Understanding how to use pesticides correctly, how you may become exposed, how to protect yourself from exposure and how to respond to an exposure will reduce the risks. Pesticide Exposure and Poisoning: Part 1 and Part 2, in previous editions of In the Filed, defined pesticides, discussed pesticide exposure, how you may become exposed to pesticides and pesticide poisoning. Part 3 will discuss responding to a pesticide poisoning and the challenges of diagnosing a pesticide poisoning. The three part series on pesticide exposure and poisoning will help readers be able to: 1. Distinguish between pesticide exposure and pesticide poisoning. 2. Avoid the potential for pesticide exposure and poisoning. 3. Recognize the types of pesticide exposure and the possible effects. 4. Know how to respond to pesticide exposure. 5. Accurately report history and symptoms to clinicians. 6. Understand the challenges diagnosing pesticide poisoning.
Responding to a Pesticide Poisoning
Recommendations for treating pesticide poisoning vary among the type of pesticide and its’ toxicity. For specific information, always refer to the pesticide label or call the Poison Control Center (800-2221222). In an emergency, always seek medical attention and take the pesticide label with you to the emergency room. General decontamination procedures below are general recommendations and do not substitute for professional medical attention: Skin Decontamination Dermal exposures account for 97 percent of pesticide exposures. The hands and forearms count for the majority of skin exposures usually resulting from splashing or spilling during mixing. 1. Remove all contaminated clothing. 2. Wash exposed areas with generous amounts of soap and water. 3. Shower if much of the body was exposed and use shampoo on the hair and scalp. 4. Wash under fingernails and in skin folds. 5. Attendants should avoid contact with contaminated clothing and wear chemical resistant gloves. Chemical Burns on Skin 1. Remove all contaminated clothing. 2. Wash the skin with large quantities of cold running water. 3. Avoid using ointments, greases, powders and other drugs unless recommended by a healthcare provider. Respiratory Exposure 1. Move the victim to fresh air immediately. 2 Ensure a clear airway exists. 3. If convulsing, watch breathing and protect from falls and blows to the head. 4. Pull the victim’s chin forward so tongue does not block air passage. 5. If breathing stopped, administer artificial respiration until hospital reached. Eye Exposure 1. Some pesticides cause eye damage on contact. 2. Wash the eye as quickly and gently as possible. 3. Wash for 15 minutes or more with clean gentle stream of body temperature water. 4. Do not use any chemical or drugs in wash water. Swallowed Pesticides – SEEK IMMEDIATE MEDICAL ATTENTION 1. If the pesticide is still in the mouth, wash it out with lots of water. 2. Quickly and carefully read the first aid section of the pesticide label or contact the Poison Control Center to determine IF the pesticide should be diluted by drinking fluids. Some pesticides should never be diluted. This will be on the label or available at the Poison Control Center. WWW.INTHEFIELDMAGAZINE.COM
3. Check to see IF vomiting should be induced, if so: a. Move the victim to a kneeling position. b. Use syrup of ipecac or put your gloved finger in the victim’s mouth and touch the back of the throat. Do not use salt water or give liquids to induce vomiting. 4.Do not induce vomiting if the victim: a. Is unconscious or convulsing b. Swallowed a corrosive poison or emulsifiable concentration 5. Keep the victim calm and contact emergency services or take the victim to the nearest medical facility. 6. Have the product label and Safety Data Sheet (SDS) available for medical personnel.
Diagnosing Pesticide Poisoning
Many clinicians receive a very limited amount of training in occupational and environmental health, and in pesticide-related illnesses, and therefore, do not know how or have little experience diagnosing pesticide illness or poisonings. Clinicians may face patients that present with complaints of: • Nausea, vomiting, headache, weakness, diarrhea, stomach cramps, dizziness, confusion or blurred vision • Excessive sweating, chills or thirst • Chest pain, difficulty breathing, muscle or body cramps or twitching The lack of information on what a pesticide poisoning looks like and the many different symptoms that may present makes diagnosis of pesticide poisoning difficult. Most of the data about pesticide poisoning comes from ingestions in children or suicides. This data reflects extreme modes where doses are very high. Also, children react to pesticides differently from adults and suicidal patients are not workers. Furthermore, the patient may not relate the illness to pesticide exposure or may be reluctant to report the truth. There is no easily accessible test for most pesticides and there are limited diagnostic tools for clinicians. As a result, most pesticide exposures are treated with decontamination and symptomatic therapy. The following antidotes are available only for: • Cholinesterase inhibitors: Atropine & 2-PAM • Rodenticides: Fresh frozen plasma & Vitamin K • Cyanide containing pesticides: Sodium nitrite and sodium thiosulfate • Some herbicides: Alkaline diuretics Many antidotes and medical treatments are not risk free and may present a substantial risk to the patient. So, some pesticide exposures are not treated and physicians need to know which exposures to treat and how best to treat exposures. The Recognition and Management of Pesticide Poisonings: 6thEdition gives healthcare providers a quick reference resource for the best toxicology and treatment information for patients with pesticide exposures. The 5th Edition is available in Spanish. This resource is available on-line at: http://www2.epa.gov/pesticide-worker-safety/recognition-and-management-pesticide-poisonings or can be ordered from the EPA’s Office of Pesticide Programs, at 703-305-7666. Prevention of pesticide exposure is the best way to remain safe, healthy and avoid poisoning when using pesticides. Exposure prevention is achieved by receiving training prior to pesticide use, reading the pesticide label prior to use, and strictly following all label instructions and recommendations. Knowing how to use application equipment correctly and equipment calibration is key to reducing the chance of exposure. Exposures can also be reduced by being familiar with the application site and environmental conditions prior to making pesticide application decisions. For more information on integrated pest management and pesticide education contact the UF/IFAS Extension Hillsborough County office at (813)744-5519. INTHEFIELD MAGAZINE
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