Research being conducted by UF/IFAS researchers is looking into whether fabric mulch groundcovers will reduce water usage and improve yield.

Scientists at the Indian River Research and Education Center (IRREC) are conducting research to see if fabric mulch groundcovers will reduce water usage and increase yield in citrus groves. The research is being conducted in a Scott Citrus Management Grove for lemons using covers that are not generally utilized in citrus, according to a Citrus Industry article, except for controlling diaprepes root weevil populations in tree root systems.  See the details of the research below.

Details of Fabric Mulch Groundcovers Use in Citrus

The research that is ongoing into the value of fabric mulch groundcovers has many components. According to the article, researchers are:

  • “Evaluating how much water is saved and whether yields improve when the groundcovers are used.”
  • Determining plant growth in covered blocks versus uncovered blocks.
  • Using precision irrigation tools to collect real-time data for soil moisture and soil temperatures and to record how water is moving in the soil.
  • “Evaluating the relationship between water applied and the growth and health of tree root systems in covered and uncovered blocks.”

Researchers are looking to use the results to “provide tools and recommendations for growers so they can implement best management practices in their groves.” Citrus grove owners could see savings with reduced water usage, improved yield, and reduced root weevil populations. Those interested can watch a video describing the research at the Scott Citrus Management Grove here.

Griffin Fertilizer is committed to helping both growers and ranchers make sound agronomic and economic decisions in order to maximize the health of their grove and pasture. As a full-service custom dry & liquid fertilizer blender and crop protection product distributor, we will continue our mission to further advance Florida agriculture. For questions or concerns about your farm or pasture, contact us and one of our team will be in touch.