Center News: Archives 2018

FFL Launches Fertilizer Ordinance App

Keeping up with local fertilizer ordinances can be tough, especially in areas where municipalities have established one set of rules that may or may not coincide with those set forth in a county ordinance. To help green industry professionals navigate these regulations, the UF/IFAS Florida-Friendly Landscaping™ Program has developed an app to identify which areas have adopted ordinances and what it needed to comply. Read the full press release at

CLCE Faculty Receive University Term Professorships

Congratulations to Gail Hansen and Erin Harlow on receiving University Term Professorships! Dr. Gail Hansen is an associate professor in landscape design; Erin Harlow is a commercial horticulture agent with UF/IFAS Extension Duval County. University Term Professorships are awarded to tenure-track faculty members to recognize and reward faculty achievements. The purpose of these awards is to recognize recent contributions and provide incentives for continued excellence. Each University Term Professorship award includes a $5000 (gross) annual salary supplement for a period of three years. Candidates must be nominated by their unit leader, have annual evaluations of Commendable or Exemplary for last five evaluations, high quality of student mentorship, record of professional service, and excellence in research, teaching, or extension. While 250 are awarded across the university, only two are reserved for extension agents.

Michael Dukes and Team Win ASBE Blue Ribbon Award

Michael Dukes and his team were recognized in July with a 2018 Educational Aids Blue Ribbon Award at the ASABE Annual International Meeting in Detroit, Michigan, for their project “Florida Friendly Landscape (FFL) Water Savings Impact." The award is an opportunity to recognize authors who do exceptional work and provide educational leadership beyond the classroom. The American Society of Agricultural and Biological Engineers (ASABE) is an educational and scientific organization dedicated to the advancement of engineering applicable to agricultural, food, and biological systems.

CLCE Faculty a Major Part of James App Award-winning Team

Every year, UF/IFAS Extension program leaders select a group working in Extension for the James App Award for Outstanding Extension Team. This year, the “Florida Statewide Water Savings Success Team” was chosen as the honoree for 2018-19. The team was recognized for their collaborative efforts to estimate water savings from their educational programs at the statewide level. Comprised of agents who reported substantial 2017 impacts as well as state specialists who provide program evaluation strategies and education, it includes many CLCE faculty and affiliate faculty: Laura Warner, Michael Dukes, Esen Momol, Michelle Atkinson, Lynn Barber, and Tatiana Borisova. Other members of the team are Laura Vasquez, Laurie Albrect, and Jane Morse. They were recognized August 30th during the Dean’s Administrative Program at the Extension Professional Associations of Florida (EPAF) conference in Ponte Vedra Beach. This award has been given annually since 2001, with honoree team names engraved on a plaque that hangs in the Dean for Extension Office.

Lloyd Singleton Named Outstanding Volunteer by FNGLA

Lloyd Singleton, director of UF/IFAS Extension in Lake County and a CLCE affiliate faculty member, was recently recognized as the 2018 Outstanding Volunteer by the Florida Nursery, Greenhouse and Landscape Association (FNGLA). Singleton was recognized for his work to both develop and advocate for FCHP certification education training at Coleman Correctional, a federal penitentiary based in Sumter County. That program, which has experienced overwhelmingly positive results since its inception several years ago, trains inmates for success in earning FNGLA’s Certified Horticulture Professional designation. See the award video on the FNGLA website.

Michael Dukes Named to Irrigation Association Board of Directors

CLCE Director Michael Dukes has been elected to the Irrigation Association Board of Directors, which establishes the association’s strategic direction, policies and programs. The board monitors current and evolving industry trends, determines strategic priorities, defines public policy positions and acts as stewards of IA’s financial resources. Directors are elected each fall by regular members of the association and represent the diversity of member types and market segments. The Irrigation Association is a leading membership organization for irrigation companies and professionals. According to a news release from the Irrigation Association, Dr. Dukes’ first exposure to the irrigation industry was in his uncle’s irrigated cornfield. He has almost exclusively worked in irrigation research and education and has been active with the Irrigation Association since 2001. He served in the Smart Water Application Technologies group of the IA, where he developed the rain sensor test protocol used to test a variety of commercially available products. In addition, Dr. Dukes has been a member of the Irrigation Show Technical Program Committee since 2006 and has served as vice chair and chair of that committee. He has won many awards and honors for his work, including the American Society of Agricultural and Biological Engineers Fellow in 2017 and the Irrigation Foundation Excellence in Education Award in 2014.

Andrew Koeser awarded seed funding

The IFAS Early Career Scientist Seed Funding program has recognized Dr. Andrew Koeser, CLCE faculty and an assistant professor in environmental horticulture, was awarded $48,488 in research funding for his project, "Trees and Natural Disasters: Improving Estimates of Likelihood of Impact, Likelihood of Failure, and Consequences of Failure in Professional Risk Assessments." The IFAS Dean for Research office, in partnership with the Senior Vice President for Agriculture and Natural Resources and the Vice President for Research, has once again implemented the funding program to facilitate development of new faculty research, jumpstart their research programs, and to provide a platform for their future success. Out of 24 proposals, 15 were awarded.

BMP Irrigation and Precision Agriculture ISTs

The Agricultural BMP Program is sponsoring two In-Service Training opportunities. Travel will be sponsored for those attending the Gainesville training. The two ISTs are on precision agriculture (February 22, 2018) and irrigation scheduling (February 28, 2018). Registration is now open at the PDEC site (

Jorge Barrera Wins OSBS Jumpstart Award

The Ordway-Swisher Biological Station (OSBS) is a unique resource for ecosystem and ecological research, boasting more than 9,500 acres with 15 distinct vegetation communities. OSBS also has newly renovated or newly constructed infrastructure in the form of buildings, equipment, roads and lodging. One demonstration of the UF/IFAS commitment to research excellence in natural resources is the OSBS Jumpstart Award program, administered by the UF/IFAS Dean for Research. Among the awardees is CLCE faculty member Dr. Jorge Barrera, assistant professor of utility analytics in the UF Department of Agricultural and Biological Engineering. Along with Young Gu Her of the Tropical REC and Jiangxiao Qiu of the Ft. Lauderdale REC, Dr. Barrera was award for their project, "Quantifying Climate Change Impacts on Ecosystem Service Dynamics in Hydrologically Connected Forest Wetland and Lake Systems." Read the

full article to learn about the project.

UCF holds plant science conference November 10, invites students

The University of Central Florida will be hosting a local plant science conference, Plants Beyond Limits, November 10, 2017. This will be a one day event hosted at UCF's main campus focusing on the relationship between humans and plants. Talks will include topics such as urban agriculture, Florida native plant species, conservation, and ecosystem health with keynote presentations by Dr. Ray Wheeler from NASA on Plants in Space, and Dr. Stella Salvo of Monsanto on Food Security and the Future of Agriculture. On-campus tours and workshops will also be offered. They would like to invite graduate and undergraduate students, in particular, to participate in the conference by showcasing their work in a poster session. Note that registration costs will be waived for all poster-presenting students. For details on attending the Plants Beyond Limits, visit the conference website. For information about poster sessions, please contact Jordan Dowell.

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