Residential and Commercial Fruit Production
Dooryard citrus is very common in Putnam County. Prior to the freezes in the late 1890s, Putnam County was actually a major citrus producing area for the commercial industry. These days, freezes are just one of many issues that impair our iconic tree, along with diseases and insect pests. The most devastating problem is citrus greening, a deadly bacterial disease that is vectored by a tiny insect known as the Asian citrus psyllid. This disease will clog the phloem and eventually kill the tree, and will cause defoliation, fruit drop, root decay and other symptoms along the way. Meanwhile, researchers at the university are working to help alleviate the stress. Come chat with us at the extension office for advice on proper variety selection, nutrient and water management, and tree establishment.
Another popular fruit crop in Putnam County is the blueberry shrub. Whether your intentions are to start a u-pick farm, install edible landscaping or just need guidance with existing plants, we can help! Blueberries have been gaining popularity as health benefits have been studied and proven. The berries are beneficial for wildlife, and getting antioxidants into your diet. The blueberry shrub can be easily incorporated into the landscape if you have acidic, well-drained soils. Our location is ideal for rabbiteye or southern highbush species. Just make sure that you select at least two varieties to assist with cross pollination. Berries are typically harvested in Putnam County starting in April. Contact your local blueberry growers to find out if and when they open their doors for u-pickers.