From the chairman
 Changes in Agronomy staff
 Agronomy social events
 In memoriam
 From the editor
 Agronomy/Soils Club news
 The latest on AGROWEB

Group Title: AgroGator
Title: AgroGator. Volume 9, Issue 1. Spring 1999.
Full Citation
Permanent Link: http://ufdc.ufl.edu/UF00066345/00002
 Material Information
Title: AgroGator. Volume 9, Issue 1. Spring 1999.
Uniform Title: AgroGator
Physical Description: Serial
Creator: Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences
Affiliation: University of Florida -- College of Agricultural and Life Sciences -- Department of Agronomy -- Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences
Publisher: Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences, University of Florida
Publication Date: Spring 1999
 Record Information
Bibliographic ID: UF00066345
Volume ID: VID00002
Source Institution: University of Florida
Holding Location: University of Florida
Rights Management: All rights reserved, Board of Trustees of the University of Florida

Table of Contents
    From the chairman
        Page 1
        Page 2
    Changes in Agronomy staff
        Page 3
    Agronomy social events
        Page 4
    In memoriam
        Page 5
    From the editor
        Page 6
    Agronomy/Soils Club news
        Page 7
    The latest on AGROWEB
        Page 8
Full Text


Ir olum N-in e Iss Onping


Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences

From the Chairman...............
Changes in Agronomy........... 3
SocialEvents ....................... 4
In Memoriam....................... 5
Faculty Travel...................... 5
FacultyAwards...................... 5
Faculty News........................ 5
Alumni News ....................... 5
Student Awards .................... 6
StaffAwards......................... 6
From the Editor..................... 6
Soils Club News..................... 7
FieldDays............................ 7
Latest on Web....................... 8

University of Florida

A publication of the
Department ofAgronomy
P.O. Box 110500
Gainesville, FL 32611-0500
phone: (352) 392-1811
fax: (352) 392-1840
Editor: Dr. Alison Fox
Design & Layout.Eunice Mobley

AgroGator Online:
http://www. ifas. ufl edu-agroweb/

Majestic oaks surround the entrance to the new IFAS Plant Science Research and
Education Unit near Citra.

Faculty, staff and students of the Agronomy Department have just completed
the Spring semester and we look ahead to the hot months of summer. I can
remember a time in past years when we seemed to have a bit of time to catch our
breath during the summer months, but with the continued growth of the Univer-
sity of Florida and an increasing number of students taking summer classes, sum-
mers are now just as busy as other semesters. Of course, summers are always
especially busy with field research and extension programming during the grow-
ing season of many of the agronomic crops in Florida. Time surely doesn't stand
still and change seems to be a way of life these days. Let me update you on a few
recent happenings and share with you a few things the Department will be doing
to plan for the future:

Field Research Facilities
The Green Acres Farm has served the needs of the Agronomy Faculty very well
for many years and we have indeed been fortunate to have had that piece of prop-
erty for support of our research and extension programs. However, as we have
looked to the future and have observed the rapid urbanization surrounding that
farm, the decision has been made to sell the Green Acres Farm and consolidate
many of the Plant Science field research programs to a 1,000 acre farm near Citra
(23 miles south of Gainesville). This site is an IFAS farm that was formerly used
as a beef cattle research farm (ie. the Pine Acres Research Unit) by the Animal
Science Department until the recent move of those programs to the Santa Fe River
Ranch north of Gainesville. Dr. Danny Colvin, former Weed Scientist in the

Chariman: continued on page 2

Spring 1999

Chairman: continued from page 1

Agronomy Department, has been hired
as Director of the plant science farm
that now has a new name the Plant
Science Research and Education Unit.
Dr. Colvin will work closely with fac-
ulty to develop the unit into a state-of-
the-art field research facility that will
provide field support for teaching, re-
search, and extension programs of sev-
eral departments. Eventually, field re-
search programs of Agronomy, Horti-
cultural Science, Entomology and
Nematology, Plant Pathology, and some
field research programs of the Agricul-
tural and Biological Engineering and
the Soil and Water Science Depart-
ments are expected to be consolidated
at the new facility. The development of
this new facility and the move from
Green Acres to the Plant Science Re-
search and Education Unit will be a
major project, requiring considerable
planning and, in the short-term, some
interruption to programs but, in the
long-term, will represent a significant
improvement in field support facilities.
It is anticipated that we will continue
to utilize the Green Acres Farm through
the year 2000 growing season, with the
first season at the Plant Science Re-
search and Education Unit being 2001.

Program Reviews and Strategic
UF/IFAS In January Dr. Mike Martin,
Vice President for Agriculture and
Natural Resources, met with the fac-
ulty of the Agronomy Department to
share some of his observations about
UF/IFAS since he has been on the job
(last October), and to discuss with us a
bit of his vision for the future. Dr.
Martin indicated that he had been very
much impressed with the overall UF/
IFAS programs and that it was his opin-
ion that the quality of the programs of
UF/IFAS is one of the best kept secrets
nationally. The Vice President dis-
cussed with us the components of the
UF/IFAS Florida FIRST Strategic Plan-
ning process, with the focus on a state-

Winner of an IFAS Superior Accomplishment Award, Richard Fethiere, at work
in the new Forage Evaluation Laboratory in McCarty Hall.

wide conference of UF/IFAS faculty
and stakeholders in late May. Faculty
in our department have been busy pre-
paring "base papers" on both Field and
Forage Crops to set the stage for dis-
cussions that will occur at that state-
wide conference. Other Agronomy
Faculty members have contributed to
base papers on subjects including natu-
ral resource issues. Following the state-
wide conference, UF/IFAS should have
a much better vision of priorities to be
addressed in the future and the
Agronomy Department will be poised
to ensure that our plans integrate within
the overall IFAS Strategic Plan that
emerges from the Florida FIRST con-
ference. Dr. Martin also foresees more
visibility for UF/IFAS on the federal
level and the international front.

Agronomy Department The
Agronomy Department is in the initial
phases of planning for a comprehen-
sive, departmental review to be held
April 10-14, 2000 in Gainesville. It has
been some 12 years since our last re-
view and it is time that we ask external
experts in our disciplines to spend some
time with us to review our accomplish-
ments but, more importantly, to help us
plan future program direction. The re-
view will encompass our state-wide

programs in teaching, research, and ex-
tension. Faculty will soon begin recom-
mending members for a review team,
preparing a pre-review syllabus, and
meeting as a state-wide faculty to dis-
cuss our programs. This will require
time and commitment on the part of our
faculty, but should be helpful as we
move into the next millennium.

Consolidation of Laboratory and
Field Research Facilities:
Renovated Laboratory Space in
McCarty Hall Six years ago
Agronomy Faculty were scattered
across campus in 11 different buildings.
With funding from the IFAS Deans and
Vice President to renovate laboratory
space in McCarty Hall (space formerly
occupied by the Cell Science and Mi-
crobiology Department), we have
greatly consolidated faculty offices and
research programs so that we are now
distributed over only four buildings
(Newell Hall, McCarty Hall, Center for
Aquatic and Invasive Plants, and the
Wallace Building). Programs of Drs.
Rex Smith, Lynn Sollenberger, Merrill
Wilcox (now retired), and Donn Shil-
ling (now Director at the West Florida
Research and Education Center) were
moved into McCarty Hall D (west end
of the Dean's wing). Drs. Quesenberry,
Chairman: continued on page 3

AgroGator 2



Spring 1999

Chairman: continued from page 2
Gallo-Meagher, Wofford, and
MacDonald also moved into the reno-
vated laboratory space as a part of the
consolidation. This move has helped
tremendously to bring the Agronomy
programs physically closer together, al-
lowing us to interact more closely.

Building Plans
And, yes, somewhere on the horizon is
a new building to house the faculty,
staff and programs of the Agronomy
and Soil and Water Science Depart-
ments. This new building now ranks
seventh on the University priority list
and when funded and built will be lo-
cated immediately west ofFifield Hall.
It's easy to get a bit excited about this
possibility, although I recall that Dr.
Dean told me when I was hired some
20 years ago that a new building to
house Agronomy would be a reality
very shortly. Nevertheless, there does
seem to be renewed commitment to a
new building for the Agronomy Depart-

I hope you enjoy reading this issue of
AgroGator, the newsletter of the
Agronomy Department at the Univer-
sity of Florida. Dr. Alison Fox, Eunice
Mobley, and other faculty and staff
members do an excellentjob of putting
the newsletter together. We are grate-
ful for their dedicated efforts and we
hope the articles are of interest to you.
A number of exciting things are hap-
pening in UF/IFAS and the Agronomy
Department and I am honored to be
associated with the many fine and com-
mitted individuals who make our de-
partment outstanding. Hopefully, the
budget and personnel reductions that
many departments incurred in the early
90's are now behind us, and we can now
focus on ways we can address the chal-
lenges and opportunities of the future.
Your support of the programs of our
department are very much appreciated.

Jerry Bennett

Srn inAgronmy iStaf

In mid January the Agronomy Department bid
farewell to Kimberly Meyer-Sturgeon who
has moved to Atlanta to work for Big Blue...not
their equivalent of Gainesville's recycling pro-
gram, but IBM. After working at the Center
for Aquatic Plants for three years, Kimberly
transferred to the Agronomy Department in
November 1996, where she became informa-
tion specialist and won an IFAS Superior Ac-
complishment Award. The Department cel-
ebrated Kimberly's many contributions to our
website, publications (including AgroGator),
and progress in information technology with a
well-attended afternoon social. We wish Kim-
berly well in her new career.

Kimberly enjoys a farewell

The good news is...... that we were able to find a new Information Specialist in
Eunice Mobley who was able to start on January llth, 1999. This gave her an
opportunity to spend some constructive days with Kimberly getting up-to-speed
on the Department's information technology needs. Eunice joins us after 18 years
with UF, most recently in the College of Veterinary Medicine. In addition to her
full-time job of keeping our website up-to-date, working on extension and De-
partmental publications, running the computer laboratory, and generally helping
to bail us out of computer emergencies, Eunice is a part-time student with a major
in public relations. In recognition of her excellence in these studies, Eunice re-
cently received a University Scholars Award of $3,000 to conduct research this
summer with Dr. John Wright in the Department of Telecommunications. This is
plenty to keep her busy, but when she gets a chance, Eunice loves to dance...and
as she says, any type will do!
Changes: continued on page 4

Judith Mullaney and Eunice Mobley, new staff members.

3 AgroGator



Spring 1999

Changes: continued from page 3
Another new member of staff, Judith
Mullaney, joined us in early April.
Judith is a Biological Scientist work-
ing with Ken Quesenberry in the For-
age Legumes Laboratory, although she
actually spends most of her time out in
the greenhouses and field plots. Judith
looks forward to becoming a part-time
graduate student here at UF. After re-
ceiving a B.S. in Science in Agricul-
ture from the University of Minnesota,
Judith worked for Novartis at their
Stanton, MN office. Luckily, Judith
knows what to expect of the Florida
climate, having previously lived in
Daytona. Her Minnesotan cat and dog
may be in for a bit more of a shock!

We welcome Eunice and Judith to the
Agronomy Department and look for-
ward to many years of productive col-
laboration with them.

After their beautiful wedding on May 8th,
there is no longer a Traci Martin in the
f Agronomy office at
S.- .* 304 Newell Hall.
Nowyou shouldask
for TraciDurden. If
' that name sounds
S2, a miliar so it should,
since Traci has married Gerald, the son of
Sandy and GearryDurden, both on the staff
of the Agronomy Department. We wish
Traci and Gerald all the best in their
lives together.

> The annual Agronomy Holiday Party was held on Wednesday December 9th at
the conference center in the Austin Cary Memorial Forest. This event was very
well attended by faculty, staff and students (once they found the correct roads
in the dark), who enjoyed the usual feast of turkey, ham, etc, with home-made
hors d'oeuvres and desserts. Although there were two options for tickets, $2 a
person or a penny per pound of person, there was little call for the bathroom
scales! Amongst other new traditions, guests were invited to contribute
canned goods and decorations for a tree, all of which were delivered after the
party to a deserving family in Gainesville. This family had been identified in
a class project at P. K.Yonge School, and they were very grateful for this extra
surprise from Santa Claus.

> On the afternoon of March 23rd, 1999, students, office-staff, post-doctoral
associates, and faculty met in the Friends of Music Room for the Agronomy
Undergraduate Graduate Student Social. In the midst of much munching and
chatter, Jerry Bennett welcomed us to this popular annual event, introduced
two new faculty (Greg MacDonald and Joyce Tredaway), and provided an
opportunity for advisors to introduce new graduate and undergraduate

Kim Lottinville stands back as David Wofford and Jerry Bennett
dive into the food at the Agronomy Social.

> The annual Agronomy and Soil & Water Science Departments' BarBQ and
Fish Fry will be held at the Livestock Pavilion on a Friday evening in mid

> This year's Agronomy Holiday Party has been booked at the Austin Cary
Forest for Friday December 3rd. Look out for further details in the next issue
of AgroGator.

AgroGator 4



Spring 1999

Faculty Awards

Four members of our distinguished fac-
ulty recently received awards for their
outstanding teaching and research ser-
Lynn Sollenberger received the
Teaching Improvement Program award
(TIP), a nationally recognized program
to enhance and reward undergraduate
Dan Gorbet, Bill Haller and
David Wright received the Profes-
sorial Excellence Program award
(PEP) which rewards faculty based
on their accomplishments and con-
tinuing productivity since promotion
to the rank of professor, including ex-
cellence and high merit in scholar-
ship or creative achievement, teach-
ing, service and extension.

Faculty News

Here and Gone!
The Agronomy Department was
pleased to welcome JeffRay as a Cour-
tesy Assistant Professor in January
1999. Jeff is a plant geneticist working
with USDA-ARS at the interface of
crop physiology and genetics. His re-
search has focused on topics such as
the tolerance of sugarcane to high
watertables, and the photoperiod neu-
trality of forage grasses. However, we
won't be able to enjoy Jeff's enthusi-
astic questioning of seminar speakers
any more because in early August he
will be moving to Stoneville, MS to
accept a position in genomics at their
USDA-ARS laboratory. We thank Jeff
for his contributions to our department
and wish him well in Stoneville.

In Memoriam

Dr. David Anderson

After several months of battling adult acute lympho-
cytic leukemia, Dr. David Anderson, Professor of Plant
Nutrition (Agronomy), died on January 17th, 1999.
David was based at the Everglades Research and Edu-
cation Center (REC) in Belle Glade, where his research
program focused on sugarcane nutrition and soil chem-

Dr. Anderson was born in 1951 in Sheboygan, Wis-
consin. He received his B.S. degree in Natural Resource Management from
the University of Wisconsin in 1973. After participating in the U.S. Peace
Corps in Peru, he earned his M.S. in Soil Science / Statistics in 1978 from
North Carolina State University, and his Ph.D. (1981) in Soil Chemistry /
Water Chemistry from the University of Wisconsin.

Dr. Anderson began his professional career as a post-doctoral soil chemist at
Auburn in 1981. In 1982, he was hired by the University of Florida, Ever-
glades REC as an Assistant Professor. He attained the ranks of Associate
Professor in 1987 and Professor in 1996. He continued to be actively involved
in international agriculture with consultations in Barbados, the Bahamas,
Honduras, India, Guyana, Mexico and the Netherlands. As a result of these
activities, Dr. Anderson trained numerous graduate students from outside the

5 AgroGator

Faculty Travel

In February Randall Stocker contrib-
uted a paper titled, "Commercial use,
physical distribution, and describing
invasiveness: three reasons why Florida
still struggles with invasive plants" at
the 1st International Weed Risk Assess-
ment Workshop, in Adelaide, Austra-
Ken Boote traveled to Costa Rica to
present an invited paper at the "Inter-
national Symposium on Integrated
Management Systems in Banana Pro-
duction" held May 3-7 at Escuela de
Agriculture de la Region Tropical
Humeda (EARTH, a 4-year agricultural
college) about 1.5 hours north of San
Jose. Ken presented a paper on "NcL\
Advances in the Study of Roots and
Nutrient Uptake: Lessons Learned from
Research on Other Crops." While there,
he visited with several UF graduates,
B. K. Singh, professor at EARTH, and
Ruben Ortiz, agronomist with Chiquita
Banana company.

Alumni News

DavidEnglert (B.S. 1976) is the presi-
dent of Joe's Nursery, a wholesale foli-
age nursery with sales nationwide and
Kenton Dashiell (Ph.D. 1983) is
the director of the Crop Improvement
Division at the International Institute of
Tropical Agriculture in Ibadan, Nige-
Maria Pereia (Ph.D. 1998) ac-
cepted a teaching position for the 1998-
1999 academic year as a visiting assis-
tant professor in the Biology Depart-
ment at the University of North Caro-
lina-Pembroke. She teaches a number
of courses including Introductory Bi-
ology, Biotechnology I and II, Genet-
ics and Frontiers of Science. She will
teach at UNC-Pembroke during the
1999-2000 academic year.



Spring 1999

Student Awards

+ Two graduate students in the
Agronomy Department re-
ceived awards at the Florida
Weed Science Society meet-
ing, held in Eustis in late Feb-
mary. In addition to first prize
in the student paper contest,
Mike Edenfield was awarded
the society's annual Graduate
Student Scholarship. Eric
Johnson placed third in the
paper contest and also re-
ceived the FWSS Outstanding
Student of the Year award.

+ John MacLaren won the
"Outstanding Senior in
Agronomy" receiving a
plaque from the American So-
ciety of Agronomy.

+ Alison Walker recently re-
ceived a Unversity Scholars
Award of $3,000 to conduct re-
search with Dr. Charudattan,
studying biological control of
some local aquatic weeds.

Staff Awards

In April 1999, Rich-
Superior ard Fethiere was
Accomplish- presented with an
meni IFAS Superior Ac-
Award in the
USPS Scien-
cal category.
Richard, who
works in the Forage Evaluation Labo-
ratory with Lynn Sollenberger received
this award in recognition of his out-
standing service to IFAS and the Uni-
versity of Florida.

from~~ th*dio

Buddy, CAN You


Tn addition to trying to provide our
leaders with news about activities
associated with the Agronomy Depart-
ment, we have also tried to include a
"human interest" perspective to ar-
ticles about our faculty, staff and
students. Interviews for a feature
article nearly always include a ques-
tion about hobbies and other activities
that we hope give a glimpse of lives
beyond the classroom, laboratory and
At the suggestion of a member of the
Publications Committee, many mem-
bers of the Agronomy Department
recently received a request for infor-
mation about volunteer activities.
Many thanks to the 20 people who
were able to reply. I hope that you will
agree that the following lists of causes
supported by members of this depart-
ment is impressive in both its length
and diversity.
Although many ofus also contribute
money, food and clothing to a host of
other worthy groups, I wanted to focus
on the participatory endeavors to
which people commit that most
precious of resources, time. Many of
us have more than enough demands on
our time between school, work and
family but there is usually much to be
gained in terms of personal satisfaction
from volunteer activities, even those
that require just a few hours a year.
And probably the most common, but

not reported, volunteer activity is
caring for young and old family
members and neighbors.
In this issue we've just listed the
supported activities by rough catego-
ries, but in future issues we hope to
have brief articles that feature specific
projects or people. Not wanting to
engender feelings of sanctimonious-
ness or embarrassment, no names are
included here, but if you are interested
in learning more about a particular
activity, please contact me and I will
put you in touch with the relevant
person. Of course, if you want to know
which one of us is a Director for the
Credit Union, look at the photos in
their lobby!

Health related:
AIDS-HIV services
American Heart Association
Blood donor
Hospital / nursing home visitor
International Association of Lions
Juvenile Diabetes Foundation
March of Dimes

BETA Birth Education, Training and
Boy scouts
English as foreign language tutor

Volunteer: continued on page 7

AgroGator 6



Volunteer: continuedfrom page 6

School advisory council
Student tutor
Vocal Eyes (textbooks on tape)

Big Brothers and Big Sisters
Director of Campus USA Credit Union
Habitat for Humanity
Neighborhood watch
Meal service at St. Francis House
Usher at Center for Performing Arts

The Nature Conservancy
Wildlife Rescue

Campus Christian Faculty Fellowship
College Ministry
Sunday School Teaching

Football chain crew
Swim team Booster Club
Alison Fox

Upcoming Field Days

June 14-16
Georgia Tobacco Tour
Contact: Ben Whitty
(352) 392-1817

June 17
Florida Tobacco Tour
Contact: Ben Whitty
(352) 392-1817

June 29-July 1
Deep South Weed Tour
Contact: Joyce Tredaway
(352) 392-1817

July 6-8
Southern No-Till Field Day
Tifton, GA
Contact: David Wright
(850) 875-7119
294-7119 SUNCOM

July 13-16
American Peanut Research &
EducationSociety Annual
Savannah, GA
Contact: Ben Whitty
(352) 392-1817

July 25-27
Southern Peanut Growers Conf.
Panama City, FL
Contact: Ben Whitty
(352) 392-1817

Week of August 8-16th*
Forage Workers' Tour
*Exact date not yet determined
Contact: Bill Kunkle
(352) 392-9059

7 AgroGator

Spring 1999

Agronomy/Soils Club News

1 On the afternoon of Friday April 9t, the Agronomy-Soils Club held a
"Party on the Patio" for students, staff and faculty. This novel depar-
ture from the Spring Flings at Lake Wauburg was such a success that
supplies of burgers, hot dogs, sodas, etc., were running short for the
late-comers. There was a volleyball court and blazing grill on the south
side of McCarty A so the party was hard to miss, and there were plenty
of opportunities for socializing. As noted afterwards by Agronomy/
Soils Club President, Joe Sullivan, they may have hit upon a winning
formula this time, and look forward to repeating this event next year.

1 Jimmy Wilkerson, John MacLaren and Heather Myers received
"Agronomy-Soils Club/Florida Foundation Seed Producers, Inc. Schol-
arships" in the amount of $600. These funds come from the sale of
peanuts donated by the Florida Foundation Seed Producers, Inc.

) Four Agronomy-Soils Club members attended the Southern Regional
meetings of the American Society of Agronomy, Student Activities
Section (SAS-ASA), in Raleigh, North Carolina, March 26-28. The
attendees were Christina Fulford and Justin West from Plant Science-
Agronomy and Amanda Burdt and Todd Timko from Environmental
Management in Agriculture and Soil and Water Science.

) The new officers from the Agronomy/Soils Club are:
President Jimmy Wilkerson
Vice President Justin West
Secretary Chris Fulford
Treasurer Todd Timko



Spring 1999

The Latest on AGROWEEB
There are two new additions to Agronomy's Web page:
the Graduate and Departmental Seminar Schedule and the
Agronomy Bulletin Board. The Bulletin Board will include
departmental events and announcements. Check out the
new additions at: http://gnv.ifas.ufl.edu/~agroweb/

1 1W. t i w
"--R j ; ... ,-h..h-.r- NO SALT
I k. n1- 0 .uU IV.u-L.-uu -
$6.00 FOR A 56 OZ. CAN
__$ $36.00 FOR A SIX-CAN CASE

.- 352-392-6358 OR 352-392-1823

S.7 ; e
- -^ --- -- -- --- -- ------ ^- -----
/ \
f Please tell us what you are doing! We would like this newsletter to serve as a source of information on \
Activities within the Department and news of alumni and friends. Send us information on your recent activities
and we will be pleased to include them in future newsletters.

SName Year Grad Degree
I Street
SCurrent occupation (title, company, business) or other news of interest

Return to: Dr. Alison M. Fox, AgroGator Editor, University of Florida, Department of Agronomy, P.O. Box
\ 110500, Gainesville, FL 32611-0500.
I Return to: Dr. Alison M. Fox, AgroGator Editor, University of Florida, Department of Agronomy, PGO. Box I
1 110500, Gainesville, FL 32611-0500.

AgroGator 8




A :u -7



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