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 Table of Contents
 Introduction
 Methods
 Size of properties and age...
 Cash costs and cash receipts
 Yield per acre
 Price per box
 Purchase price of properties
 Costs of plantings made since purchase...
 General information
 The questionnaire














Title: Economic study of absentee ownership of citrus properties in Florida
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Title: Economic study of absentee ownership of citrus properties in Florida
Physical Description: Book
Creator: Hawthorne, H. W.
Publisher: University of Florida Agricultural Experiment Station
Publication Date: 1935
Copyright Date: 1935
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Table of Contents
    Table of Contents
        Page 1
        Page 2
    Introduction
        Page 3
        Page 4
    Methods
        Page 5
    Size of properties and age of trees
        Page 6
        Page 7
    Cash costs and cash receipts
        Page 8
        Page 9
        Page 10
        Page 11
        Page 12
        Page 13
        Page 14
        Page 15
        Page 16
        Page 17
    Yield per acre
        Page 18
        Page 19
    Price per box
        Page 20
        Page 21
        Page 22
    Purchase price of properties
        Page 23
        Page 24
        Page 25
    Costs of plantings made since purchase of property
        Page 26
        Page 27
    General information
        Page 28
        Page 29
    The questionnaire
        Page 30
        Page 31
        Page 32
Full Text


Bulletin 287 December, 1935


UNIVERSITY OF FLORIDA
AGRICULTURAL EXPERIMENT STATION
GAINESVILLE, FLORIDA
WILMON NEWELL, Director




ECONOMIC STUDY OF

ABSENTEE OWNERSHIP OF

CITRUS PROPERTIES IN FLORIDA

By
H. W. HAWTHORNE, Agricultural Economist, United States
Department of Agriculture
and
J. E. TURLINGTON*, Professor of Agricultural Economics,
College of Agriculture, University of Florida



CONTENTS Page
Introduction ......................................... ....... ....... ............ .... ............. 3
Methods of caring for groves............ ........................ 5
Methods of harvesting, packing and marketing fruit .......................-.......... 5
Size of properties and age of trees..... ................ ........ 6
Cash costs and cash receipts........... ......... .. .. ...... 8
By seasons .. ...... .................................. 8
By age of trees................ ............... ... ..... .. 10
Taxes ............................ .... ...... ............................... .......... 13
F ertilizer............................................ ........... ............................. ... ... 15
Other costs .... ....................... .................. ........................ ..... .............................. 15
Y field per acre....................... . ........................................... ................ 18
Price per box ....... ............................................................. ......... ... ... 20
Purchase price of properties........... ... .... ............ 23
Costs of plantings made since purchase of property......................... 26
General Information............................... ... 28
Absentee owners live in many States....................... .. .................... .28
Occupations, trades and professions of absentee owners .................. 28
Many absentee owners visit their groves........... ........... ........ 29
Some absentee owners change caretakers....................... .. 29
The questionnaire... ...................................... .............. ............... 30

*Deceased

Bulletins will be sent free to Florida residents upon application to
AGRICULTURAL EXPERIMENT STATION
GAINESVILLE, FLORIDA









EXECUTIVE STAFF BOARD OF CONTROL

John J. Tigert, M.A., LL.D., President of the Geo. H. Baldwin, Chairman, Jacksonville
University A. H. Blanding, Bartow
Wilmon Newell, D.Sc., Director A. H. Wagg, West Palm Beach
H. Harold Hume, M.S., Asst. Dir., Research Oliver J. Semmes, Pensacola
Harold Mowry, M.S.A., Asst. Dir., Adm. Harry C. Duncan, Tavares
J. Francis Cooper, M.S.A., Editor J. T. Diamond, Secretary, Tallahassee
Jefferson Thomas, Assistant Editor
Clyde Beale, A.B.J., Assistant Editor BRANCH STATIONS
Ida Keeling Cresap, Librarian
Ruby Newhall, Administrative Manager NORTH FLORIDA STATION, QUINCY
K. H, Graham, Business Manager L. 0. Grate, Ph.D., Plant Pathologist in
Rachel McQuarrie, Accountant Charge
R. R. Kincaid, Ph.D., Asso. Plant Pathologist
MAIN STATION, GAINESVILLE J. D. Warner, M.S., Agronomist
Jesse Reeves, Farm Superintendent
AGRONOMY CITRUS STATION, LAKE ALFRED
W. E. Stokes, M.S., Agronomist** A. F. Camp, Ph.D., Horticulturist in Charge
W. A. Leukel, Ph.D., Agronomist John H. Jefferies, Superintendent
G. E. Ritchey, M.S.A., Associate* W. A. Kuntz, A.M., Assoc. Plant Pathologist
Fred H. Hull, Ph.D., Associate B. R. Fudge, Ph.D., Associate Chemist
W. A. Carver, Ph.D., Associate W. L. Thompson, B.S., Asst. Entomologist
John P. Camp, M.S., Assistant
EVERGLADES STATION, BELLE GLADE
ANIMAL HUSBANDRY
ANIMAL HUSBANDRY A. Daane, Ph.D., Agronomist in Charge
A. L. Shealy, D.V.M., Animal Husbandman** R. N. Lobdell, M.S., Entomologist
R. B. Becker, Ph.D., Dairy Husbandman F. D. Stevens, B.S., Sugarcane Agronomist
W. M. Neal, Ph.D., Asso. in An. Nutrition Thomas Bregger, Ph.D., Sugarcane Physiologist
D. A. Sanders, D.V.M., Veterinarian G. R. Townsend, Ph.D., Assistant Plant
M. W. Emmel, D.V.M., Asst. Veterinarian Pathologist
N. R. Mehrhof, M.Agr., Poultry Husbandman J. R. Neller, Ph.D., Biochemist
W. W. Henley, B.S.A., Asst. An. Husbandman R. W. Kidder, B.S., Assistant Animal
Bradford Knapp, Jr., M.S., Asst. An. Hush. Husbandman
P. T. Dix Arnold, B.S.A., Assistant Dairy Ross E. Robertson, B.S., Assistant Chemist
Husbandman B. S. Clayton, B.S.C.E., Drainage Engineer
L. L. Rusoff, M.S, Laboratory Assistant
Jeanette Shaw, M.S., Laboratory Technician SUB-TROPICAL STATION, HOMESTEAD
CHEMISTRY AND SOILS H. S. Wolfe, Ph.D., Horticulturist in Charge
W. M. Fifleld, M.S., Asst. Horticulturist
R. W. Ruprecht, Ph.D., Chemist** Geo. D. Ruehle, Ph.D., Associate Plant
R. M. Barnette, Ph.D., Chemist Pathologist
C. E. Bell, Ph.D., Associate
R. French, Ph.D., Associate W. CENTRAL PLA. STA., BROOKSVILLE
H. W. Winsor, B.S.A., Assistant W. F. Ward, M.S.A., Asst. An. Husbandman
ECONOMICS, AGRICULTURAL in Charge*
C. V. Noble, Ph.D., Agricultural Economist** FIELD STATIONS
Bruce McKinley, A.B., B.S.A., Associate
Zach Savage, M.S.A., Associate Leesburg
A. H. Spurlock, M.S.A., Assistant M. N. Walker, Ph.D., Plant Pathologist In
ECONOMICS, HOME Charge
ECONOMICSW. B. Shippy, Ph.D,. Asso. Plant Pathologist
Ouida Davis Abbott, Ph.D., Specialist" K. W. Loucks, M.S., Asst. Plant Pathologist
C. F. Ahmann, Ph.D., Physiologist J. W. Wilson, Ph.D., Associate Entomologist
SPECTROGRAPHIC LABORATORY Plant City
L. W. Gaddum, Ph.D., Biochemist A, N. Brooks, Ph.D., Plant Pathologist
L. H. Rogers, M.A., Spectroscopic Analyst Cocoa
ENTOMOLOGY A. S. Rhoads, Ph.D., Plant Pathologist
Hastings
J. R. Watson, A.M., Entomologist** Hasting
A. N. Tissot, Ph.D., Associate A. H. Eddins, Ph.D., Plant Pathologist
H. E. Bratley, M.S.A., Assistant Monticello
HORTICULTURE G. B. Fairchild, M.S., Asst. Entomologist***
A. F. Camp, Ph.D.. Horticulturist"* Bradenton
G. H. Blackmon, M.S.A., Horticulturist and David G. Kelbert, Asst. Plant Pathologist
Associate Head of Department C. C. Goff, M.S., Assistant Entomologist
A. L. Stahl, Ph.D., Associate Sanford
F. S. Jamison, Ph.D., Truck Horticulturist Purvis Ph.D., Assistant Chemist,
R. J. Wilmot, M.S.A., Specialist, Fumigation ER. Purvis, Ph.D., Assistant Chemist,
Research Celery Investigations

R. D. Dickey, B.S.A., Assistant Horticulturist Lakeland
PLANT PATHOLOGY E. S. Ellison, Ph.D., Meteorologist*
B. H. Moore, A.B., Asst. Meteorologist*
W. B. Tisdale, Ph.D., Plant Pathologist** W. 0. Johnson, B.A., Asst. Meteorologist*
George F. Weber, Ph.D., Plant Pathologist R. T. Sherouse, Asst. Meteorologist*
R. K. Voorhees, M.S., Assistant*** M. L. Blanc, Asst. Meteorologist*
Erdman West, M.S., Mycologist
Lillian E. Arnold, M.S., Assistant Botanist In cooperation with U.S.D.A.
Stacy 0. Hawkins, M.A., Assistant Plant ** Head of Department.
Pathologist *** On leave.









ABSENTEE OWNERSHIP OF
CITRUS PROPERTIES IN FLORIDA
By H. W. HAWTHORNE and J. E. TURLINGTON

INTRODUCTION
This is a partial report on an economic study of the citrus
industry in Florida, conducted by the Bureau of Agricultural
Economics, United States Department of Agriculture, in co-
operation with the College of Agriculture, University of Florida.
The report has particular reference to owners of citrus proper-
ties in Florida who reside outside of the state. Primarily, its
object is to present data obtained from absentee owners them-
selves relative to costs, returns and general grove information,
in order that an absentee owner may have data for comparisons
of his own property with those of other absentee owners, and
that contemplating purchasers may have information for their
guidance.
To carry out this objective, questionnaires' were mailed to
more than 1,000 out-of-state owners of citrus properties in the
summer of 1930. The questionnaire asked for data relative
to costs of operating groves and receipts therefrom for the
six seasons 1924-25 to 1929-30, inclusive; costs of developing
groves; date of purchase of property; age of trees at the time
of purchase; plantings made since purchasing; terms of pay-
ment for purchases; method of selling fruit; who determines
the method; with whom the selling agency settles; such general
information as occupation, trade, or profession of owner;
whether or not he visits his property; and if so, the frequency
and the extent of his visits. In several instances remarks were
offered by those replying to the questionnaire, either as to the
Florida citrus industry in general, or to their own properties
in particular.
In response to the questionnaire, 477 absentee owners re-
plied, giving all or a portion of the data and information re-
quested. An appreciable number of the absentee owners in
1930 had bought their properties within the previous six years,
and of course had data only for the years they had owned the
property. Some, even though they had owned properties dur-
ing the previous six years, had available records for only some
of the years-those for the other years having been lost or
destroyed. The replies from several of the owners were com-
SSee copy of questionnaire, pages 30-32.







4 Florida Agricultural Experiment Station

plete in all respects. Most of the replies indicated that a high
degree of effort and care had been exercised on the part of
absentee owners to report accurate data. Only a few gave
"rounded off" or estimated figures. The approximate locations
of the properties of absentee owners included in this report
are shown in Fig. 1. Wide variations existed in the replies












Figure 1.-Location of 477 citrus
properties studied. Each dot repre-
sents the approximate location of the
property of an absentee owner whose
reply is included in this report. In
the preparation of the map, the dots
were placed with consideration to the
railroad stations as well as to the
counties reported by the owners.






to each question. The tables are presented as fair approxi-
mations of the combined experiences of the persons reporting
without attempt at finality of analysis. The distributions with
respect to location, size of groves, age of trees, time and manage-
ment factors are wide enough to cover all but exceptional cases.
The total acreage of the 477 properties upon which this report
is based was over 8,000 acres, less than one-half of which had
been planted to citrus when purchased by the present owner, but
with approximately three-fourths in citrus by 1930. More
specifically, the total acreage of properties of the 463 absentee
owners who reported definitely on this point amounted to 8,605.9
acres, with 3,975.6 acres in citrus at time of purchase, and 6,501.1
acres by 1930. Of the 477 owners, 185 reported all of the acreage
in citrus at time of purchase, 114 reported part in citrus, and 172







Absentee Ownership of Citrus Properties 5

reported none had been planted to citrus when purchased. Six
did not report on this question.
Of the acreage reported in 1929 as to kinds of fruit, 52 per-
cent was in orange trees, 40 percent in grapefruit trees and 8
percent in tangerine trees. Several groves had orange trees
only and several grapefruit only; but more often there were
both orange and grapefruit trees in the same grove, and less
frequently tangerine trees were included.

METHODS OF CARING FOR GROVES
Absentee owners seldom own equipment or tools to care for
their groves, but employ a caretaker who has equipment for
this purpose. The caretaker may be the owner of a grove in
the community who has found it advantageous to care for one
or more groves in addition to his own; or he may represent an
individual, partnership, or corporation, whose business it is
to care for other peoples' groves. There are several caretakers
in the state each caring for 2,000 acres or more of grove, as
well as a large number caring for less acreages. In a number
of instances the caretaking business has been an outgrowth of
the development of groves for sale where it was necessary to
provide for the care of groves which had been sold, as well as
for unsold groves.
Caretakers in addition to caring for groves owned by people
who reside outside the State of Florida, also care for a large
number of those owned by people who reside within the state,
but who have practically no grove equipment, work stock, or
other form of power. Some of these owners who live within
the state and who employ caretakers reside at the grove, but
a larger number of them live in nearby towns.
The methods of charging for the care of groves are far from
standardized and vary greatly from a flat rate per acre, includ-
ing all materials, power, supervision and labor, to charges by
the day, acre, or tree for each operation, the owner furnishing
or paying for all fertilizer and other materials. In some in-
stances the grove owner purchases the fertilizer and other
materials or a part of them, but perhaps more often the care-
taker makes the purchases for the absentee owner.

METHODS OF HARVESTING, PACKING AND
MARKETING FRUIT
The operations of harvesting, packing and marketing citrus
in Florida usually are performed by a packing and marketing








6 Florida Agricultural Experiment Station

organization with whom the producer contracts. This is true
whether the owner be a resident or an absentee. Less fre-
quently sales are made of the fruit on the tree. In a few in-
stances the producer picks, packs and markets his own fruit.
Almost one-half of the absentee owners reported that they
themselves determine the harvesting and marketing agency
through which their fruit is sold and almost another one-half
reported that the caretaker determines the agency. Only 5
percent of the total number reported that they and the care-
taker together determine the agency through which the fruit
is sold.
Based upon the replies of 417 absentee owners, the selling
agency settles directly with the owner in about 70 percent of
the instances; and through the caretakers in the other 30 per-
cent.
SIZE OF PROPERTIES AND AGE OF TREES
Properties ranged in size from less than one acre to over
200 acres, the more usual sizes were around 5 acres, 10 acres,
and 20 acres, with those around 10 acres predominant. Fre-
quently all of the land was in grove, which was especially true
for those properties of around 10 acres or less. Occasionally less
than one-half of the land was in grove, but this usually occurred
on the properties of larger acreages.
The number of absentee owners whose acreage of property
fell within the specified acreage groups in 1929 is shown in
Table 1.
TABLE 1.-SIZE OF PROPERTIES OF 466 ABSENTEE OWNERS, 19291.

Size groups Number of groves
Less than 3 acres.................................. 29
3 to 7 acres.......................................... 90
8 to 12 acres-...................- ... ......... 225
13 to 17 acres............................... ........ 22
18 to 22 acres....................................... 53
23 to 27 acres........................................ 8
28 to 32 acres................. ................ 12
33 to 37 acres..................................... 4
38 to 42 acres....................... ........... 8
43 to 47 acres................... ....... 3
48 to 52 acres......................................... 3
Over 522 acres .........---...................|.......... 9
'The acreage of 11 properties was not reported.
"Includes 4 properties of over 100 acres, 2 of which were over 200 acres.

The age of trees ranged from those just planted in 1929 to over
30 years, and are fairly evenly distributed among the different







Absentee Ownership of Citrus Properties 7

ages from the sixth year up to and including the fifteenth year,
when the number of groves of older trees dropped off rapidly.
Usually the trees of a given grove were of a given age, except
for replants, but there was an appreciable number of groves
with trees of various ages. In a few instances the ages of
trees were not reported. The number of absentee owners whose
groves fell within the several age groups in 1929 is given in
Table 2.
TABLE 2.-AGE OF TREES IN 19291.

Age of trees Number of groves

First year (planted in 1929)................ 2
Second year............................................. 4
Third year............................................... 4
Fourth year............................................. 5
Fifth year..............-- ................. ........ 9
Sixth year ............................................... 15
Seventh year........................................... 30
Eighth year .............................................. 23
N inth year...................................... ..... 50
Tenth year.............................................. 29
Eleventh year......................................... 18
Twelfth year........................................... 24
Thirteenth year.................................... 28
Fourteenth year..................................... 23
Fifteenth year ----------.................................. 22
Sixteenth year....................... .. ........... 12
Seventeenth year.................................... 6
Eighteenth year ----.................. ............. 7
Nineteenth year..................................... 3
Twentieth year........................................ 5
Over twentieth year.............................. 24
M ixed ages............................. ...... 85
Unknown ages.................................... 38
1The age of trees was not reported for 11 properties.

The approximate situation as to the acreage and age of
orange, tangerine and grapefruit trees in the United States
and in some of the citrus producing States in November 1934
is summarized from the Agricultural Outlook for 1935, Miscel-
laneous Publication No. 215, United States Department of Agri-
culture, as follows:
In the country as a whole, there were about 539,000 acres of
orange and tangerine groves. About 88 percent of the trees
were nominally of bearing age. Two-fifths of the bearing acre-
age was less than 15 years old. Of the total acreage about 49
percent was in Florida, 44 percent in California and the re-
maining 7 percent was in Texas, Arizona, Alabama, Mississippi
and Louisiana.







8 Florida Agricultural Experiment Station

In Florida, early oranges made up about one-half of the acre-
age, with 15 percent not of bearing age. Late oranges made
up about 40 percent of the acreage, with 13 percent not of
bearing age, and the remaining 10 percent of the acreage was
tangerines with 3 percent under bearing age. About three-
fifths of the bearing acreage of oranges and tangerines in Flor-
ida was less than 15 years old.
There were about 215,000 acres of grapefruit trees in the
United States in 1934, distributed as follows: Florida, 43 per-
cent; Texas, 42 percent, the remaining 15 percent being located
in California and Arizona.
In Florida, approximately 10 percent of its 93,000 acres of
grapefruit was not of bearing age, and 55 percent of the bear-
ing acreage was less than 15 years old.

CASH COSTS AND CASH RECEIPTS
Costs under this heading are to be interpreted as including
such costs as labor up to the time of picking, fertilizer, spray
materials and taxes. They do not include interest on invest-
ment and depreciation of groves, since the investment was
not asked for in this questionnaire.1 Receipts are net after de-
ducting picking, hauling, packing, selling, and transportation
charges.
BY SEASONS
The average seasonal costs and receipts for all groves in the
sixth year and up reporting these items are shown in Table 3.
The 6-year average receipts per grove, averaging 13.1 acres of
citrus, exceeded the costs by $30.67, or $2.50 per acre of citrus.
For the four seasons 1924-25, 1925-26, 1926-27 and 1929-30,
receipts about equaled costs; for the season 1928-29, receipts
were less than costs; and for the season 1927-28, receipts ex-
ceeded costs by a comfortable margin. The receipts from approx-
imately one-fourth of the groves equaled or exceeded the costs
in the poorest season, 1928-29. In the best season 1927-28, re-
ceipts exceeded the cost in about one-half of the groves.
In Table 4 data are shown corresponding to those in Table
3, for those groves whose receipts equaled or exceeded their
costs. The groves included in Table 4 were but slightly larger
and only slightly older than those included in Table 3. Their
six-year average costs were $150.49 more per grove, or $4.36
per acre of citrus, while their receipts were $1,342.13 more per

1Purchase prices of properties are shown in Table 17.





TABLE 3.-COSTS AND RECEIPTS PER GROVE FOR THE SEASONS 1924-25 TO 1929-30, INCLUSIVE.
(Groves in the sixth year and older)
SI Groves From
Acreage Per Grove Per Acre Which Receipts
Season Groves Grove in the Costs Costs Equaled or
Total sixth year (Without Receipts (Without Receipts Exceeded
land and older Interest) Interest) Their Costs
Year Number Acres Acres Dollars Dollars Dollars Dollars | Number

1924-25 70 17.2 12.8 1210.98 1198.00 94.61 93.59 29
1925-26 113 17.0 13.3 1175.06 1110.18 88.35 83.47 40
1926-27 154 16.7 13.3 1188.29 1202.05 89.34 90.38 58
1927-28 195 16.2 12.7 1246.62 1671.26 98.16 131.60 95 0
1928-29 256 16.2 13.1 1276.84 1053.00 97.47 80.38 71
1929-30 305 16.7 13.5 1225.79 1273.15 90.80 94.31 98
Average of
six seasons 16.7 13.1 1220.60 1251.27 93.12 95.62 391

TABLE 4.-COSTS AND RECEIPTS PER GROVE FOR THE SEASONS 1924-25 To 1929-30, FOR THOSE GROVES WHOSE RECEIPTS
EQUALED OR EXCEEDED THEIR COSTS.
(Groves in the six.n year and older)

Acreage Per Grove Per Acre
Season Groves Grove in the Costs Costs
Total land sixth year (Without Receipts (Without Receipts
S| and older Interest) Interest)
Year Number Acres Acres | Dollars Dollars Dollars Dollars

1924-25 29 18.6 14.3 1054.03 2190.54 73.71 153.18
1925-26 40 18.9 15.5 1464.34 2456.21 94.47 158.46
1926-27 58 16.5 13.6 1311.11 2403.29 96.40 176.71
1927-28 95 15.6 13.3 1478.18 2975.08 111.14 223.69
1928-29 71 17.1 14.2 1529.06 2656.71 107.68 187.09
1929-30 98 15.2 13.7 1389.83 2878.57 101.45 210.11
Average of I I
six seasons 17.0 14.1 1371.09 2593.40 97.48 184.87







10 Florida Agricultural Experiment Station

grove, or $89.25 per acre of citrus, than the average of all groves
reporting.
Wherein were these differences in costs and receipts? The
question is partly answered in Tables 5, 6, 11, 14 and 16, in
which certain comparisons have been made relative to age of
trees, taxes, fertilizer, other costs, yields per acre and prices
per box.
BY AGE OF TREES
The 6-year average costs and receipts by age of trees for all
of the groves are shown in Table 5, and similar data for those
groves whose receipts equaled or exceeded their costs are shown
in Table 6.
On the average the receipts from groves from the sixth to
the eleventh years of age did not meet the costs; but for those
from the twelfth year up, receipts were more than costs. Re-
ceipts from groves in the sixth to the eighth years did not meet
costs in any of the six seasons, while those from groves in the
ninth to eleventh years met the costs in only one of the six
seasons.
While the 6-year average receipts for all of the groves in the
sixth to the eleventh years of age did not meet the costs, those
in about 25 percent of the instances did meet, or exceed, the
costs, and while the average receipts for all of the groves in the
fourteenth year and older exceeded the costs, those in about
40 percent of the instances did not equal the costs. Although
average yearly receipts per acre for all of the groves were
only $2.50 more than costs, for the groups of younger groves
there was some enhanced value each year, due to increased
growth of trees. On the other hand, certain individual groves
were so poorly located in respect to soil and frost protection,
that there was no enhanced value due to age of trees even though
they may have been well cared for.
Some absentee owners have been led to expect that groves
may be depended upon to pay their way at ages earlier than the
data from these reports over the six-year period, 1924-25 to
1929-30, will substantiate.
One owner says: "This grove has been a disappointment to
me. When purchased (1921 with trees in the third year) I was
told in four years it would pay for the fertilizer and other ex-
pense; in six years it would be a money maker."
A compilation of data representing all the groves in the fourth
year and up for which costs and receipts were reported is made
in Table 7. In some instances a grove is represented for each






TABLE 5.-AVERAGE COSTS AND RECEIPTS BY AGE OF TREES FOR THE Six SEASONS 1924-25 TO 1929-30, INCLUSIVE.

I Acreage Per Grove _Per Acre | Groves
Age of Trees (Years) Costs Costs From Which Re-
Total land Grove (Without Receipts (Without Receipts Total eitr Excede
___Interest) I Interest) I Their Costs
_Acres Acres I Dollars Dollars Dollars Dollars | Number Number

Sixth to eighth...................... 15.1 12.3 804.48 407.64 65.61 32.77 314 40
Ninth to eleventh................ 17.6 13.2 1190.45 1096.82 91.30 83.74 290 110
Twelfth to fourteenth ........... 15.7 11.3 1241.95 1301.06 109.86 119.53 192 93
Fifteenth to seventeenth...... 9.0 7.1 943.52 1680.12 127.06 219.67 66 34
Eighteenth and older............ 12.6 10.9 1881.42 4083.15 170.79 353.49 62 40
Mixed and unknown................ 22.9 19.3 2086.77 2235.56 109.46 116.83 169 74

Average of all ages................ 16.7 13.1 1220.60 1251.27 93.12 95.62 1093 391

TABLE 6.-AVERAGE COSTS AND RECEIPTS BY AGE OF TREES FOR THE SEASON 1924-25 TO 1929-30, FOR THOSE GROVES, O
WHOSE RECEIPTS EQUALED OR EXCEEDED THEIR COSTS.

Acreage Per Grove Per Acre
Age of Trees (Years) Costs Costs
Total land Grove (Without Receipts (Without Receipts
Interest) Interest) "
Sit I .tAAcres Acres Dollars Dollars Dollars Dollars

Sixth to eighth........................ 15.0 12.3 806.81 1206.41 86.16 155.74
Ninth to eleventh............. 15.8 12.5 1081.38 2063.27 86.41 164.83
Twelfth to fourteenth............ 12.7 10.1 973.08 2018.74 93.67 200.23
Fifteenth to seventeenth...... 8.6 7.1 968.95 2259.50 124.13 290.33
Eighteenth and older............ 14.0 13.0 2348.95 6366.95 176.66 437.12
Mixed and unknown............ 23.8 21.9 2270.60 3687.32 101.90 166.94

Average of all ages................ 17.0 14.1 1371.09 2593.40 97.48 184.87
_







12 Florida Agricultural Experiment Station

of the six seasons, in some instances for five of the six seasons,
and so on until some groves are represented for only one season.
In the table a given grove is counted as many times as it repre-
sents seasons.
TABLE 7.-RELATION OF AGE OF GROVE TO COSTS AND RECEIPTS.
Groves on which Groves on which receipts I
receipts were were I Groves
Age of Total equal to or 67 to 99 134 to 66 I 1 to 33 i with no
trees groves greater than percent percent percent receipts
costs of costs of costs of costs
Years I Number) Number I Numberl Numberl Numberl Number
Fourth ........ 60 0 0 1 15 44
Fifth .......... 77 2 2 5 26 42
Sixth ............ 98 9 7 16 37 29
Seventh ...... 111 17 10 20 48 16
Eighth ........ 105 14 11 39 32 9
Ninth .......... 108 30 10 25 36 7
Tenth .......... 95 35 15 23 20 2
Eleventh .... 87 45 3 15 19 5
Twelfth .... 79 41 12 14 11 1
Thirteenth 64 30 10 13 9 2
Fourteenth 49 22 11 10 4 2
Fifteenth
and older 128 74 17 22 10 5
Mixed and
unknown 167 74 22 25 40 6

All ages ......1 1228 1 393 130 228 307 170

In not a single instance out of 60 did groves in the fourth
year pay their way; that is, their receipts did not equal their
costs, while in 44 instances there were no receipts. In two in-
stances out of 77, groves in the fifth year paid their way, while
in 42 instances there were no receipts. In nine instances out
of 98, groves in the sixth year paid their way, while in 29 in-
stances there were no receipts. From the eleventh year up groves
paid their way in just about one-half of the instances. Of the
407 instances from the eleventh year up, there were 212 in which
groves paid their way-and receipts exceeded costs by comfort-
able margins in many instances. From the eleventh year up,
there were 53 instances in which receipts ranged from 67 to
99 percent of costs; 74 instances in which receipts ranged from
34 to 66 percent of costs; 53 instances in which receipts ranged
from 1 to 33 percent of costs; and 15 instances in which there
were no receipts.
Some of the apparent reasons why certain groves returned
little if any receipts in a given year are:
First:-Trees failed to set a crop of fruit, because of poor
soil, neglect, starvation, cultural mistakes, a very heavy crop







Absentee Ownership of Citrus Properties 13

the preceding season, leaving the previous crop on the trees too
long, or frost damage.
Second:-Even with a crop of fruit set, there sometimes were
little if any receipts to the grower, because there was low market
demand for the kind or variety of fruit at the time it was offered,
and hence the fruit sold on a market that failed to pay harvest-
ing and marketing costs; prices were so low that fruit-espe-
cially of poor quality-was not harvested; the fruit was de-
stroyed by cold, storms or fire.
Seldom did a grove in the sixth year or older fail to return
any receipts two years in succession. Of the groves that had
reached the fifteenth year of age or older by 1929, there was
not a single instance in which a given grove failed to return
any receipts two years in succession. There were 14 groves
included which had reached the fifteenth year or older by 1929,
and for which costs and receipts were reported each of the six
seasons. For the entire six-season period receipts were greater
than costs for 10 of these groves, and less than costs for the
other four, but in no instance more than 26 percent less.

TAXES
Taxes, amounting to $6.71 per acre of property, or $8.76 per
acre of citrus, on the average represented approximately 10 per-
cent of the costs in Table 3, but varied widely from grove to
grove, and, in many instances, from year to year for the same
grove.
A summary of the average amount of taxes by years for all
the properties reporting this item is made in Table 8.
TABLE 8.-AMOUNT OF TAXES PER ACRE BY YEARS.

S Acreage I Taxes
Year Groves I Per Acre
I Total In Total Total In Usual
S I land IGrove land Grove I range
INumberl Acres Acres | Dollars i Dollars I Dollars I Dollars
1924 73 1193.5 798.6 6,77 39 5 51 8.24 1.00 to 7.00
1925 112 2038. 1516.35 12,047.98 5.91 7.94 1.00 to 10.00
1926 151 2475. 1911.85 16,977.61 6.86 8.88 1.00 to 10.00
1927 195 3123. 2414.1 22,133.48 7.09 9.17 1.00 to 10.00
1928 248 4133.63 3300.72 28,838.64 6.98 8.75 1.00 to 11.00
1929 282 4577.6 3780.58 36,162.64 7.90 8.56 1.00 to 11.00
Six-year I I
average ............ 2923.5 2287.0 20.461.79 6.71 8.76 1.00 to 11.00

The amount of taxes increased with the age of trees as shown
in Table 9.









TABLE 9.-AMOUNT OF TAXES PER ACRE BY AGE OF TREES, SIX-YEAR AVERAGE, 1924 TO 1929, INCLUSIVE.

Age of trees (Years) Groves Acreage ITaxes per acre
S. ____ Total land | In Grove I Total land I In Grove I Usual range
S_____I Number Acres Acres | Dollars I Dollars I Dollars
Less than
Sixth to eighth........... ............ 306 4780.94 3811.56 3.57 4.48 1.00 to 8.00
Ninth to eleventh....... ..... 274 4719.75 3596.2 6.50 8.53 1.00 to 11.00
Twelfth to fourteenth.......... 173 2693.33 1937.55 8.24 11.45 51.00 to 11.00
Fifteenth to seventeenth............ 55 530.33 423.68 13.21 16.54 5.00 to 50.00
Eighteenth and older.................. 80 1005.5 654.5 15.07 23.15 5.00 to 50.00
Mixed and unknown.................... 173 3810.88 3298.71 8.05 9.30 1.00 to 15.00

All ages............ ............................. 2923.5 2287.0 6.71 8.76


TABLE 10.-FERTILIZER COSTS PER ACRE BY AGE OF TREES AND BY SEASONS.

Fertilizer costs per acre
Age of trees I I I Average of the
1924-25 1925-26 1926-27 1927-28 1928-29 1929-30 six seasons
| Dollars Dollars Dollars Dollars Dollars Dollars Dollars

Sixth to eighth............................ 22.04 22.54 22.33 23.23 23.82 23.66 22.94 -
Ninth to eleventh.......................... 40.91 35.21 35.49 32.61 42.12 30.16 36.08
Twelfth to fourteenth............. 53.12 61.69 54.44 48.62 47.36 38.50 50.62
Fifteenth to seventeenth ........ 43.84 43.79 75.13 57.27 65.04 59.56 57.44
Eighteenth and older............. 54.32 86.93 82.58 77.12 61.22 58.69 70.14
Mixed and unknown................ 39.66 37.08 37.13 38.23 41.81 34.26 38.03
All ages........... ........................... 34.14 37.53 I 36.12 36.98 39.23 35.81 36.64

Number of Groves.-..................... 59 89 127 157 200 245







Absentee Ownership of Citrus Properties 15

The six-year average ranged from $3.57 per acre of all prop-
erty for trees in the sixth to the eighth years to $15.07 for trees
in the eighteenth year and older. But when the total amount
of taxes was divided by the number of acres in grove the range
was from $4.48 to $23.15 for the respective age groups.
FERTILIZER
Fertilizer costs averaged $36.64 per acre of citrus for the
groves in the sixth year and older, and represented approxi-
mately 40 percent of the total cash costs. The fertilizer costs
varied from an average of $34.14 per acre for 59 groves in 1925
to $39.23 per acre for 200 groves in 1929 (Table 10).
The six-year average cost increased from approximately $23
per acre for the group of youngest groves (sixth to eighth years)
to $70 for the group of groves in the eighteenth year and older.
The costs per acre also varied with groves of a given age-
being more than twice as much for some groves as for others
for the same years. When sorted on a basis of fertilizer costs
per acre by age of trees, Table 11, costs other than fertilizer go
up with increased fertilizer, but at a less rapid rate. Average
prices of fruit were lower with increased yields and fertilizer
costs, possibly due to a larger proportion of grapefruit.
While there are factors other than the amount of fertilizer
used affecting the yields of citrus in Florida, yet there is a
degree of relationship between the costs of fertilizer per acre
and the yields of fruit. It is by no means always true that the
higher fertilizer costs give the higher yields, nor that the lower
fertilizer costs give the lower yields. Nor is it always true
that the higher fertilizer costs and higher yields per acre give
the higher net incomes. Sometimes the years, or groves, of
higher yields and accompanied with lower prices give the lower
net incomes both per acre and per grove. There are groves,
or parts of groves,. included in this study with soils and loca-
tions such that any amount of fertilizer will not give satis-
factory returns. The indications are that with other favor-
able production conditions, as soil and drainage, it is probably
better to err in a little too generous application of fertilizer,
rather than in a scanty application.
OTHER COSTS
Cash costs other than taxes and fertilizer represented approxi-
mately 50 percent of total costs as the term is used in this re-
port. These other costs were asked for under the headings,
















TABLE 11.-RELATION OF FERTILIZER COSTS PER ACRE TO TOTAL COSTS AND RECEIPTS, AVERAGE OF SIx SEASONS, 1924-25
TO 1929-30.
Sixth to eighth I Ninth to eleventh Twelfth to four- Fifteenth Year
Item Years I Years teenth Years and Older
Below Above Below Above Below Above I Below Above
Fertilizer costs per acre Average Average Average Average Average Averagee Average

Number of groves......................... 12 11 13 9 9 7 8 4
Acres: Total................................. 15.6 12.4 16.2 13.3 10.8 13.6 7.8 11.3
Citrus..................................... 11.6 10.2 12.7 9.3 8.5 9.0 6.1 8.7
Costs per acre: Total Do:lars.... 52.10 88.12 71.92 113.17 80.13 131.26 99.73 186.81
Taxes 433 4.54 6.87 7.76 12.85 15.88 16.50 22.73
Fertilizer 14.75 35.02 23.74 51.42 27.73 63.22 40.90 84.61
Other costs 33.02 48.56 41.31 53.99 39.55 52.46 42.33 79.47

Receipts per acre: Dollars........ 30.33 35.53 82.80 100.11 117.26 171.12 167.80 272.52
Boxes sold per acr3: Number:... 24 31 64 80 89 167 151 225
Price per box: Dollars............... 1.21 1.10 1.29 1.23 1.37 1.08 1.23 1.13 C
VS.







Absentee Ownership of Citrus Properties 17

Spray and Other Materials, Tree Replacement, Picking Up Drops
(1929 and 1930), and Cultivation, Labor, Caretaker, and All
Other Costs.1 The number of absentee owners reporting costs
under these headings were fewer than the number who re-
ported total costs. Frequently the total cost figures were avail-
able while the several items making up the total costs were not
available. However, these items were stated in a sufficient num-
ber of replies to give a fairly reliable 6-year average. The fig-
ures are shown in Table 12 by age of trees.
TABLE 12.-CosTs PER ACRE OTHER THAN TAXES AND FERTILIZER BY AGE
OF TREES, SIX-YEAR AVERAGE, SEASONS 1924-25 TO 1929-30.
SI Cultivation,
I labor, care-
Spray and Tree taker and all
Age of trees other replace- other costs I Total
materials ment (excluding
III interest)
Year| Dollars I Dollars I Dollars I Dollars
Sixth to eighth.................. 5.73 2.13 30.37 38.23
Ninth to eleventh.............. 6.66 1.22 38.74 46.62
Twelfth to fourteenth..... 7.47 1.19 40.37 49.03
Fifteenth to seventeenth. 6.04 1.61 45.61 53.26
Eighteenth and older........ 12.79 2.46 62.53 77.78
Mixed and unknown.......... 7.32 3.37 51.48 62.17
All ages........................... 7.37 1.94 38.41 47.72

Federal quarantine regulations, which were applicable to
what was known as the eradication area, required that dropped
citrus be picked up and destroyed once every two weeks begin-
ning September 1, 1929. Soon afterwards, the regulation was
changed to once every week, and was in effect until November
15, 1930.
Hence the cost of picking up drops was inappreciable except
for parts of the years 1929 and 1930 when the quarantine was
in effect. Of the 477 absentee owners, 197 reported a separate
cost for picking up drops in the season 1929-30. Many of the
others reported that this cost was included in the 1929-30 total
cost and 51 reported no cost for picking up drops-there being
no cost for non-bearing groves. The 197 owners who reported
a separate cost for this item gave $7,861.15 as the cost for a
total acreage of 2,518.25 acres of groves, or an average cost
of $3.12 per acre.

'See copy of questionnaire, pages 30-32







18 Florida Agricultural Experiment Station

YIELD PER ACRE

The yield per acre, measured by the number of boxes of fruit
sold, is shown in Table 13, by age of trees and by kinds of fruit,
for the six seasons 1924-25 to 1929-30.

TABLE 13.-YIELDS PER ACRE (boxes sold) BY AGE OF TREES, SEASONS,
AND KINDS OF FRUIT.

Kind of fruit Boxes sold per acre
and Average
Age of Trees 1924- 1925- I1926- 1927- 1928- 1929- Af 6
1925 1926 1 1927 1928 1929 1930 seasons
Years I Number! Number! Number! Number| Number! Number Number

Oranges
Sixth to eighth................ 31 13 7 20 20 9 17
Ninth to eleventh............ 34 34 44 38 45 32 38
Twelfth to fourteenth.... 36* 90* 48 69 95 71 68
Fifteenth to seventeenth 64* 74* 60* 90* 151 75 86
Eighteenth and older...... 163* 189* 246 222 272 163 209
Mixed and unknown........ 50* 18* 26* 67 40 44 41
All ages.............................. 54 46 42 48 62 44 49
Grapefruit
Sixth to eighth................ 67 29 46 50 52 29 46
Ninth to eleventh............ 117 88 106 102 91 80 97
Twelfth to fourteenth.... 315* 40* 148 152 139 162 159
Fifteenth to seventeenth 66* 81* 328* 213 246 195 188
Eighteenth and older...... 146* 116* 180 229 300 164 189
Mixed and unknown........ 205* 67* 77 102 133 101 114
All ages.............................. 102 64 97 112 122 114 102
Tangerines
Sixth to eighth................ 40* 16* 7 9 8 10 15
Ninth to eleventh............ 5* 8* 38* 43* 41 16 25
Twelfth to fourteenth.... 0* 0* 6* 150* 62* 52* 45
Fifteenth to seventeenth 0* 0* 64* 21
Eighteenth and older...... 220* 189* 191* 101* 311* 244* 209
Mixed and unknown........ 11* 1* 24* 47* 21
All ages.............................. 94 56 33 16 45 34 46
All Fruit
Sixth to eighth................ 44 18 22 24 32 15 26
Ninth to eleventh............ 81 63 74 68 67 52 67
Twelfth to fourteenth.... 166* 61* 104 129 132 121 119
Fifteenth to seventeenth 65* 80* 247* 187* 233 176 165
Eighteenth and older...... 163* 164* 214 217 275 146 196
Mixed and unknown........ 134* 63 68 67 73 69 79
All ages.............................. 77 54 68 75 88 75 73

*Fewer than five groves included in average.

For the season 1929-30, 162 absentee owners with groves in
the sixth year and up reported the yield of oranges; 154 the
yield of grapefruit; 55 the yield of tangerines; and 213 reported
the yield of all fruit. The six-season average yield per season
for oranges of all ages was 49 boxes per acre. Tangerines aver-














TABLE 14.-RELATION OF NUMBER OF BOXES OF FRUIT SOLD PER ACRE TO COSTS AND RECEIPTS, AVERAGE OF SIX SEASONS,
1924-25 TO 1929-30.
I Sixth to eighth Ninth to eleventh Twelfth to four- Fifteenth Year
Item | Years Years teenth Years and Older
Below Above Below Above Below Above Below Above
Yield per acre (boxes sold) Average Average ( Average Average Average Average Average Average

Number of groves...................... 14 8 13 9 7 8 4
Acres: Total.................................. 15.4 13.2 17.7 12.9 11.4 13.0 7.2 12.2
Citrus.......................... 12.5 9.5 12.6 10.8 8.4 9.2 5.7 9.5
Cost per acre: Total Dollars...... 61.01 83.92 75.98 90.26 88.28 115.78 121.57 151.05
(Without Interest)
Taxes 4.16 4.87 6.66 7.91 13.36 14.00 18.25 22.17
Fertilizer 21.15 30.15 27.95 35.63 33.76 52.54 51.07 69.76
Other costs 35.70 48.90 41.37 46.72 41.16 49.24 52.25 59.12
Receipts per acre: Dollars........ 13.49 60.11 41.78 154.57 90.61 204.24 123.48 308.55 3
Boxes sold per acre: Number.... 10 58 31 120 61 196 102 302
Price per box: Dollars.............. 1.29 1.07 1.36 1.28 1.48 1.06 1.20 .99







20 Florida Agricultural Experiment Station

aged slightly lower than oranges, and the yield of grapefruit
was more than double that of oranges. Yields varied from sea-
son to season and with the age of trees. The seasonal variations
in yields of all fruit were from 54 boxes per acre in 1925-26 to
88 boxes in 1928-29, with much wider seasonal variations for
individual groves.
The relation of yields per acre to costs and receipts is indi-
cated in Table 14. Both costs and receipts were higher for
the groves with above average yields in any given age group
than for those with yields below average. For those groves
with below average yields, receipts were far below costs up
to the twelfth year and scarcely exceeded costs even when the
trees were in their twelfth year and up, but for the groves pro-
ducing above average yields receipts were well above costs from
the ninth year up. The six-season average receipts per season
from groves in the sixth to eighth years lacked $47.52 per acre
of meeting costs when the yield was below average, but only
$23.81 when the yield was above average; receipts from groves
in the ninth to eleventh years lacked $34.20 of meeting costs
when the yield was below average, but exceeded costs by $64.31
when the yield was above average; receipts from groves in the
twelfth to fourteenth years exceeded costs by only $2.33 when
the yield was below average, but by $88.46 when the yield was
above average; and when the groves were in the fifteenth year
and up, receipts were only $1.91 per acre more than costs when
the yield was below average, while they were $157.50 in excess
of costs when the yield was above average.
The higher yielding groups produced three or more times as
many boxes per acre as the lower yielding groups, but the costs
were not more than 50 percent greater. On the other hand
the higher yielding groups were accompanied by lower prices
per box, possibly because of a larger proportion of grapefruit.

PRICE PER BOX
The price received per box of fruit is shown in Table 15 for
the six seasons 1924-25 to 1929-30, by kinds of fruit. For the
season 1929-30, 151 absentee owners reported the price they
received for oranges; 145, the price for grapefruit; 45 the price
for tangerines, and 204 reported the price received per box for
all fruit.
The six-season average price received for tangerines was much
the same as for oranges, but that for grapefruit was only about
one-half as much. Price variations for all fruit from season







Absentee Ownership of Citrus Properties 21

to season were greater than the variations in yield per acre.
For the season 1928-29 the average price per box for all fruit
was $ .79, while that for 1927-28 was $1.84. Price as shown
in Table 15 is net after deducting picking, hauling, packing and
selling charges. Although the average season price for oranges
and tangerines was usually much higher than that for grapefruit,
the price received for grapefruit in 1923-29 was $ .80 as com-
pared with $ .73 for oranges and $ .81 for tangerines.
TABLE 15.-PRICES RECEIVED PER BOX OF FRUIT BY SEASONS AND KIND
OF FRUIT.
(Net after deducting harvesting, packing and marketing costs.)

I Price p"r box
Kind of fruit ic r I I Average
11924-25 1925-26 11926-27 1927-28 1928-29 11929-30 of 6
S1 1 ___ __ seasons
I Dollars I Dollars I Dollars i Dol:ars I Dollars I| ol.ars I Dollars
Oranges.......... 3.21 2.32 1.76 2.80 .73 1.58 2.07
Grapefruit..... .65 1.10 1.01 1.54 .80 1.27 1.06
Tangerines...... 3.32 2.27 1.96 3.28 .81 1.59 2.20
All fruit......... 1.38 1.57 1.22 1.84 .79 1.39 1.36
__ I I

The relation of prices received per box of fruit to costs and
receipts is indicated in Table 16. Both costs and receipts per
acre were higher for the groves with prices per box above the
average in any given age group than for those with prices below
the average. The six-season average receipts from groves in
the sixth to eighth years lacked $43.75 of meeting costs when
the price received per box was below the average, but only $31.13
when the price per box was above average; receipts from groves
in the ninth to eleventh years lacked $22.80 of meeting costs
when the price per box was below average, but receipts exceeded
costs by $51.49 when the price per box was above average; re-
ceipts from groves in the twelfth to fourteenth years exceeded
costs by only $10.48 when the price was below average, but
by $71.86 when the price was above average; and receipts from
groves in the fifteenth year and up exceeded costs by only $29.93
when the price per box was below average, but by $268.81 when
the price was above average.
Many factors affect the price received per box, such as kind
of fruit (oranges, grapefruit and tangerines), variety of fruit,
time of marketing, quality of fruit, and marketing agencies. Ex-
cept for kind of fruit, the data do not permit analysis of these









to





TABLE 16.- RELATION OF PRICE PER Box TO COSTS AND RECEIPTS, AVERAGE OF SIX SEASONS, 1924-25 TO 1929-30.
Sixth to eighth Ninth to eleventh Twelfth to four- Fifteenth Year
Item Year Year teenth Year and Older
Below Above Below IAbove Below Above Below Above
Price per box Average Average Average Average Average Average Average Average

Number of groves...................... 15 8 13 9 9 7 9 3
Acres: Total............ ..................... 12.8 16.9 15.4 14.4 11.9 13.8 8.9 9.8
Citrus............................. 10.0 12.6 11.6 11.1 8.3 9.2 6.8 7.9
Costs per acre: Total Dollars.... 60.98 81.23 81.60 87.37 91.80 96.09 126.96 168.39
(Without interest)
Taxes "4.36 4.19 7.22 7.30 12.22 14.91 18.72 21.98
Fertilizer 22.28 26.84 30.00 34.39 39.54 38.62 56.19 69.36
Other costs 34.34 50.20 44.38 45.68 40.04 42.56 52.05 77.05
Receipts per acre: Dollars........ 17.24 50.10 58.80 138.86 102.28 167.95 156.89 437.20
Boxes sold per acre: Number.... 25 30 67 74 139 86 177 243
Price per box: Dollars............... .74 1.56 .90 1.86 .82 1.83 .90 1.90
________ ________ _______ IS?0







Absentee Ownership of Citrus Properties 23

factors. Oranges sold higher than grapefruit every season ex-
cept that of 1928-29 when both were very low in price (Table
15).
PURCHASE PRICE OF PROPERTIES
Prices paid for grove properties were influenced by a num-
ber of factors, as time of purchase, age of trees, condition of
trees, price of citrus, grove profits for years immediately pre-
ceding purchase, advertising, salesmanship, and such natural
conditions as soil fertility and frost protection. The average
prices paid for properties by groups of years and by ages of
trees are shown in Table 17.
Of the 449 absentee owners who reported the date their prop-
erties were purchased, 17 reported purchases in two or more
years. Each one of the remaining 432 made his purchase in a
single year. The earliest date given was 1880 and the latest
1930.
Of the 426 absentee owners who reported on the ages of trees
when the property was purchased, 138 reported that none of the
land was in grove at the time and that the purchase price did
not include setting. Several others reported that the land was
not in grove at the time of purchase, but that the purchase price
included the setting of trees, and again some reported that the
land was not planted to grove, but that planting and care for the
first five years were included in the purchase price. Thirty of
the purchasers reported groves of mixed ages, and the other 258
reported the purchase price as for a grove of a given age-
ranging from the first year to the forty-first year.
Data for the 349 purchases in which the purchase price, age
of trees and date of purchase were each reported are shown in
Table 17.
The many factors entering into the prices paid for citrus
properties render it impossible to say that any group, or groups,
of purchases were better bargains than the others. However,
there are indications that many of the purchases of groves in
the first to fourth years of age were at relatively high prices,
unless the groves were especially well located. There is not
sufficient evidence from the later production of groves purchased
in the first to fourth years of age to justify the relatively higher
prices paid for such groves than for those in the fifth to seventh
years of age or older.
Many citrus growers in Florida consider that properties
worth maintaining as groves, enhance in value with each addi-
tional year of age to about the fifteenth year, when maximum








0






TABLE 17.-PURCHASE PRICES OF PROPERTY PER ACRE BY PERIODS AND BY AGE OF TREES WHEN PURCHASED.

Period when Purchased Average of all
a purchases
Age of trees 1918 and earlier 1919-1924 1925 and later
SPrice per I Price per Price per Price per
Purchases acre Purchases acre Purchases acre Purchases acre
Years Number I Dollars I Number I Dollars D s Number Dollars Numberars

Not planted.......................... 66 108. 51 182. 5 224. 122 143.
First year.................................... 11 485. 31 405. 8 837. 50 517.
Second to fourth........................ 10 303. 34 537. 9 686. 53 524. M
Fifth to seventh.......................... 4 516. 28 815. 25 608. 57 678. 2.
Eighth to tenth............................ 1 783. 7 643. 15 962. 23 866.
Eleventh to thirteenth.......... 3 656. 14 1118. 17 1072.
Fourteenth year and older.......... 3 595. 9 2809. 15 1946. 27 2133.



0







Absentee Ownership of Citrus Properties 25

selling value is probably reached. A fewer number prefer to
place the minimum age for maximum selling value at about
the twentieth rather than the fifteenth year. There is some
evidence that grapefruit trees reach their maximum selling value
at an earlier age than orange trees. There are indications that
some of the purchases of groves in the fourteenth year or older
by absentees were at prices much higher than those paid for
younger groves (Table 17). However, average production and
returns from such groves have apparently justified the higher
prices paid for them. Not many absentees have purchased
groves in the fourteenth year or older at such prices unless the
groves were outstanding in production, or unless their potential
values for development into building sites resulted in prices
above their values as groves.
Of the purchases made in 1924 or earlier, fewer than 10 per-
cent were of groves in the eighth year or older; while of those
made in 1925 or later, almost 50 percent were of groves in the
eighth year or older. Thus, there appears to be a tendency in
recent years for absentee purchasers to buy developed, or partly
developed, groves rather than properties not planted to grove
or those which have been planted for only a few years. By
purchasing older groves some of the development problems have
already been answered as well as the probable frequency of
frost damage. The experience and costs of trying to develop a
grove on land too poor, subject to frequent frost damage, or
otherwise unsuitable for citrus may be prevented. One absentee
owner said, "All these groves (5 blocks of 10 acres each) were
planted by me and my advice is, 'Never plant a grove, but buy
a grove at least 5 or 6 years old, or still better, a bearing grove'."
Of the 369 purchasers who reported the amount of cash pay-
ment at the time of purchase of their properties, 182 paid all
cash, and 9 others from 75 to 99 percent cash, while only about
one-fifth of them paid less than 25 percent of the price at time
of purchase. Thus, about one-half of the purchasers paid either
all or a large proportion of the price in cash at the time of
purchase. Of the others, 35 paid from 50 to 74 percent cash
at time of purchase; 73 from 25 to 49 percent; 50 from 10 to 24
percent; and 20 paid less than 10 percent of the price in cash
at the time of purchase.
The number of deferred installments varied widely and some-
what inversely with the amount of the installment, those who
paid most frequently paying the least amount per installment.







26 Florida Agricultural Experiment Station

Of the 162 purchasers reporting the number of deferred install-
ments, 86 reported from 1 to 4; 22 reported from 5 to 9; 22
reported from 10 to 19; and 32 reported 20 or more. Of the last
group, 11 purchasers reported 60 or more deferred payments.
Of the 136 purchasers who reported the frequency of the de-
ferred installments, 36 reported that their payments were due
monthly; 14, quarterly; 13, semi-annually; and 68, annually.
One reported payments every 4 months and 4 reported more
than one-year intervals in the payment of deferred installments.
The interest rate charged on deferred installments also varied.
Of the 180 purchasers who reported this item, 78 reported 6 per-
cent; 7 reported 7 percent; 69 reported 8 percent; and 2 re-
ported 10 percent. One purchaser reported 6 and 8 percent, and
one reported 8 and 10 percent. Twenty-two reported no interest
rate, meaning that if interest was charged on deferred install-
ments paid when due, it was included in the deferred install-
ments.

COSTS OF PLANTINGS MADE SINCE PURCHASE
OF PROPERTY
Data relative to costs of plantings made by absentee owners
since purchasing their properties were asked for in the question-
naire. These were to include costs of each planting for each
of the first four years.1
Reports covering the costs from the first to the fourth year
inclusive were made for 64 plantings and included 568.4 acres.
In addition to these, reports on costs for one, two or three of
the first four years were made for several other plantings. In
all, there were over 100 reports and they included over 1,000
acres for each year. The average of the operating costs per
acre for the 64 plantings for the four years was much the same
as for the larger number.
Data for the latter group and for the fifth year costs are
shown in Table 18.
These plantings, including over 1,000 acres, represent approxi-
mately 40 percent of all the acreage of the 477 absentee owners
which had been planted since purchase by the present owners.
The average cost including land, clearing, trees, planting and
care for the first five years, but not including interest, was
$422.79 per acre, with a credit of $4.69 for fruit sold.

"See copy of questionnaire, pages 30-32.







Absentee Ownership of Citrus Properties 27

TABLE 18.-COST OF PLANTINGS MADE SINCE PURCHASING PROPERTY, IN-
CLUDING THE FIFTH YEAR.
I Costs IReceipts
Plantings Acres per acre per acre
SNumber Number |_Dollars Dollars

Land .......................................... 122 1,972 143.001 -
First year................................. 120 1,013 101.56 -
Second year.............................. 109 1,032.5 38.78 -
Third year............................... 107 1,054.6 41.92 -
Fourth year.............................. 111 1,080.7 47.29 .502
Fifth year................................ 74 807.5 50.24 4.19'

Total.............. .......... .... .............-----.. 422.79 4.69
Receipts......... ----........ .... ...... ....-------..---... 4.69
Cost less receipts.................... ..... ........................... 418.10

'Average price of all purchases of properties not planted. For average
price of purchases, in different periods, see Table 17.
"Receipts from 85 of the 1080.7 acres.
"Receipts from 211 of the 807.5 acres.

Certain items entering into first-year costs were reported
separately for some of the plantings. Most of these items were
reported for only a few of the plantings but the figures appear
to represent fairly dependable averages of costs for the given
items. The figures are as follows:
Cost of clearing land was reported for 16 plantings, including
154.5 acres, at an average of $31.31 per acre.
Cost of plowing was reported for 3 plantings, including 50
acres, at an average of $5.41 per acre.
Cost of fencing was reported for 11 plantings, including 102.5
acres, at an average cost of $7.56 per acre.
Cost of trees (asked for separately in the questionnaire) was
reported for 191 plantings, including 1,522.4 acres, at an average
of $61.69 per acre.
Cost of setting trees was reported for 7 plantings, including
65 acres, at an average of $8.44 per acre.
Cost of cultivation and other labor was reported for 3 plant-
ings, including 21 acres, at an average of $6.93 per acre.
Cost of fertilizer was reported for 6 plantings, including 61
acres, at an average of $11.68 per acre.
Taxes were reported for 3 plantings, including 40 acres, at an
average of $2.20 per acre.







28 Florida Agricultural Experiment Station

GENERAL INFORMATION
Evidently the number of absentee owners of citrus properties
in Florida included in this report is but a small percentage of
the total number. However, the general information which
was reported on the questionnaires, both as to the groves and
as to the owners themselves, is more or less representative of
many other absentee owners. Some of these data are presented
here in summary form.
ABSENTEE OWNERS LIVE IN MANY STATES
The absentee owners whose records form the basis for this
report resided in 35 States of the United States, in the District
of Columbia, in the Territory of Hawaii, in the Dominion of
Canada and in Cuba.
The States and countries wherein they resided with the num-
ber of absentee owners in each are as follows:
RESIDENCE OF ABSENTEE OWNERS BY STATES
Number of Number of
State absentee State absentee
owners owners
Illinois ........................................ 59 W est Virginia .......................... 5
Ohio ............................................ 56 California .................................. 4
Pennsylvania ............................ 49 North Carolina ........................ 4
N ew York .................................. 45 Kansas ...................................... 3
Indiana ...................................... 26 M aryland .................................. 2
M assachusetts .......................... 24 Mississippi ................................ 2
M ichigan .................................... 20 Nebraska .................................. 2
New Jersey ................................ 17 New Hampshire ...................... 2
W isconsin .................................. 17 North Dakota .......................... 2
M innesota .................................. 16 W ashington .............................. 2
Georgia ...................................... 12 A rkansas .................................. 1
Tennessee .................................. 12 Idaho .......................................... 1
Connecticut .............................. 11 Rhode Island ............................ 1
Oklahoma .................................. 11 South Dakota .......................... 1
Iow a ............................................ 0 Verm ont .................................... 1
Alabama .................................... 9 District of Columbia ................ 4
M issouri .................................... 9 Territory of Hawaii.................. 1
South Carolina .......................... 8 Cuba ............................................ 1
Kentucky .................................. 6 Dominion of Canada ................ 8
Virginia .................................... 6
OCCUPATIONS, TRADES AND PROFESSIONS OF
ABSENTEE OWNERS
The occupations, trades and professions of absentee owners
were many and varied. Of the owners reporting data, 10 were
corporations, companies or partnerships, 391 were men and
74 were women. Over 100 occupations, trades, or professions
were reported by 371 of these men and women. Fifteen others
reported that they had no occupation, trade or profession and
29 others reported that they had retired. Among the occupa-







Absentee Ownership of Citrus Properties 29

tions, trades, and professions these absentee owners more fre-
quently classed themselves as teachers, housewives, farmers,
merchants, manufacturers, salesmen; clerks, secretaries, ac-
countants; architects, contractors, builders; engineers-civil,
mechanical, electrical or chemical; ministers, missionaries;
doctors, nurses; lawyers, bankers, brokers, realtors; superin-
tendents, machinists, printers; and railroad engineers, con-
ductors, agents, firemen. Among those less frequently given
were general managers, executives, capitalists, editors; artists,
musicians, photographers; electricians, engravers, metal work-
ers, pattern makers, riggers; plumbers, carpenters, painters,
weavers, barbers, bakers, and blacksmiths.
MANY ABSENTEE OWNERS VISIT THEIR GROVES OCCASIONALLY
Of the absentee owners whose replies form the basis of this
report, 382 have visited their groves, 50 have never visited
their groves, and 42 did not reply to this question. Of the 382
who have visited their groves, 298 visit every year, leaving only
84 who visit their groves less frequently than once per year.
Of the 298 who visited their groves every year, 182 made only
one visit annually, while the other 116 made more than one visit;
38 reported two visits per year; 20, three visits; 12, four visits;
11, five visits; and the remaining 35 made more than five visits
per year.
Approximately one-fourth of those who visited their groves
were there for only a day or less at a time. About one-fifth of
them spent a few days to a week at their groves; another one-
fifth from 8 days to a month; and another one-fifth spent more
than one month annually at the groves. Less than one in ten
were at their groves for three or more months per year. About
two-thirds of those who visited their groves reported that they
did so for the purpose of inspection. Less than one-sixth of
them reported for pleasure, vacation, visit, rest, or spending
the winter; and almost another one-sixth, for business or work.
Occasional purposes reported were for health, comfort, climate,
and for satisfying curiosity.
SOME ABSENTEE OWNERS CHANGE CARETAKERS
Of the 422 absentee owners who reported on the number of
caretakers they have had since purchasing their groves, 224,
or slightly more than one-half, reported but one caretaker;
112, or more than one-fourth, reported having had two caretak-
ers, and 44, or more than one-tenth, reported having had three
caretakers. The others each reported four or more caretakers.







30 Florida Agricultural Experiment Station

THE QUESTIONNAIRE

A copy of the original questionnaire appears on pages 30-32.
Absentee owners receiving this report, but who did not receive
the original questionnaire, may use this form for recording data
for their own properties, and mail it either to the Division of
Farm Management and Costs, Bureau of Agricultural Economics,
Department of Agriculture, Washington, D. C., or to the De-
partment of Agricultural Economics, University of Florida,
Gainesville, Florida. Any reports received in this manner may
be used in later tabulations.

ABSENTEE OWNERSHIP OF CITRUS PROPERTIES IN FLORIDA

Extent, Methods of Handling, and Profitableness

Owner's name............................ Address............................ Profession...................

Location of grove: County................................ Railway Station....................

Acres in grove at time of purchase.................... Acres not in grove..............

Date of purchase........................ Approximate age of trees at that time............

Total price of land and grove................ Cash paid at time of purchase...........

Number of installments................ Frequency.................... Interest rate on the

deferred payments...................... .......

Approximate number of annual visits to grove.................... Average time at

grove per visit.................... Purpose of visit............................ Number of boxes

of fruit taken or shipped to your family and friends annually:

Oranges.......................... Tangerines.......................... Grapefruit ...................

Usual method of sales: On the tree....................Through Exchange or other

cooperative............................ Through other marketing agency............................

Who determines method of sales, you or caretaker.................................. With

whom does selling agency or purchaser settle, you or caretaker ?...........

Name of present caretaker........................................... Address..........................

How many different caretakers have you had since purchasing the grove?


What was your cost for picking up drops for 1929-30 ?.......... ..................








Absentee Ownership of Citrus Properties 31


Planting Since Making Purchase

1st Planting 2nd Planting 3rd Planting I 4th Planting

Year planted..--- ----.. --..... ... .....-- ... ... ..... .................................
Acres planted.......... ........ ..............- .....-.
Cost of trees................ .... ... I ............. .... .......... .. ............
Kind of trees................ ............ -..- .............--



All other Costs for Each Planting, including Setting, Labor, Fertilizer, etc.

First year........ ...... .............. ............


Third year........-...-.....-..-.. ................... ... .... ........................ .............
Fourth year... ............M....--.....................................

Present acreage in: Oranges...............Tangerines...............Grapefruit................




Yearly Cost of Upkeep and Maintenance for a Number of Years:
Include Total Acres Now in Grove.



C 30




29-30
29-30 ....... ........ . .. ... ..... ... .... - -------------- -- W ......... ................
28-29 .. ........ ..... .............. .............. .....
27-28 ...... ---- .. ....... ... ................ ................ ....... .. ............. .. .... ...... ...
26-27 .. ....... ................................ ...........

25-26 ................ ..................... ................
24-25 _..... .... .. ......... ----...... - ...........







32 Florida Agricultural Experiment Station


Boxes Sold and Income Received by You After Deducting
Picking, Packing and Selling Charges

Oranges Tangerines I Grapefruit

3 3 3 Name of Sales
Season m m Agency or
Sg 8 Purchaser
o a o a o 0 oa


29-30 ......... ...................... ...... .................................... .. ................................
28-29
27-28 ............ ....................... ............ ............ ................................. ... ...............
27-28 ............ ............ ............ ............ ............ ............................................ ...........

25-26 ........................ ............................................................ ...............................
25-2 ..............................................................................-----------------.............................

24-25 ............ ............ ........... ................. .. ... .......... .......................


Indicate here if you desire a summary of our findings........................................

Rem arks:.....--- .. ................. ............................ ................................ ..





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