Courtesy University of FloridaThe amount of land that the University of Florida's Citrus Research and Education Center has on which to conduct research has grown by 50 percent, thanks to donations from a local citrus growers.
Polk County architect-turned-citrus-grower Jim Hughes has donated a combined 100 acres of land—both in older and newer gifts—to the university, according to a news release.
The Lake Alfred citrus center had about 70 acres, but it wasn't enough to accommodate all of the research work.
“With this extra 100 acres, it will greatly accelerate what we can do,” Jackie Burns, center director, said in the release. “Right now, we simply don’t have enough space. The beauty of having this wonderful donation is that it will allow us to do these experiments on a much larger, commercial scale.”
Researchers already have plans to conduct production system experiments into citrus irrigation and fertility at a couple of the locations.
They also have plans for field trials into citrus rootstocks that show promise against citrus greening.