5 Florida Citrus Nursery Trends Worth Watching

5 Florida Citrus Nursery Trends Worth Watching

There has been no shortage of citrus grower meetings around Florida. The opportunity to address these groups is always welcomed and appreciated, and sometimes gleanings from the sidebar conversations are the cherry on the sundae. While anecdotal in nature, interesting trends seem to emerge from the fog. On this page and the following, here are but five.

OLL-4 juice orange variety

OLL-4 Photo courtesy of UF/IFAS

1. Round Oranges for Processing

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By and large, these groups seem to have focused on scions of interest. I am hearing diminished interest in Hamlins and Mid-sweets and more interest in early Valencia oranges and the OLLs. Growers also are quite interested in the orange-like hybrids that appear to exhibit higher levels of HLB tolerance (unreleased, but in the UF/IFAS and USDA programs).

However, there is not nearly as much clarity when it comes to rootstock choice or rootstock scion combinations. Many growers feel the vast knowledge gained through rootstock trials and field experience is now of little value. What makes this even more difficult for nurseries is that growers continue to look to their nursery for such information more than any other source. Nurseries will be placing a great deal of focus on rootstock trial information and seminars in the near future. We can’t collect and disseminate data fast enough.