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Fall 2011

Judy Ludlow
County Extension Director
Calhoun County

“In seed time learn, in harvest teach, in winter enjoy.” William Blake

Cotton in all of its stages of growth. Photo Credits: Judy Ludlow, Calhoun County Extension

The fall harvest is nearing completion in panhandle Florida.  Peanuts have been turned and dried and sent to mills for processing.  Cotton is being picked and compressed into those giant snow-white modules we see in the fields awaiting transport to the cotton gin.  Tens of thousands of acres of crops are grown each year in north Florida. The acres planted and harvested vary from year to year depending on market conditions, weather conditions, and occurrence of disease, insects, weeds, and even depredation by deer and wild hogs.

According to data collected by the University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences (IFAS), agriculture is significant not only to our area, but to all of Florida as well.  Did you know that Florida ranks 7th in the U.S. for overall market value of agricultural products sold?  North Florida’s cotton production is part of the state’s $ 33 million dollar annual market value (2009), and our peanut production is part of the state’s $ 67 million dollar annual market value (2009).  As I continue to learn about agricultural, it is clear to me that the producers who grow our food and fiber wear many hats.  To conduct the business of agriculture, our farmers must also be economists, meteorologists, veterinarians, mechanics, botanists, pest control managers, and biologists.  Imagine where we would be without these dedicated, hardworking individuals?

In this issue read on to learn about preparing livestock for winter, attracting wildlife to your land, and about the 2011 NW Florida Agriculture Innovators honored by UF/IFAS and Farm Credit.

“Our deep respect for the land and its harvest is the legacy of generations of farmers who put food on our tables, preserved our landscape, and inspired us with a powerful work ethic.” James H. Douglas

Panhandle Agriculture

Permanent link to this article: http://okaloosa.ifas.ufl.edu/newsletters/2012/02/28/fall-2011/