University of Florida

The Neighborhood Gardener:
FFL Success Story - Florida Keys Gardening Blog

Contact: Kim Gabel, Env. Hort. Agent, UF/IFAS Monroe County Extension

The Florida Keys Landscape Advisor blog is an educational resource for identifying common landscaping problems in the Florida Keys. The Advisor’s goal is to get UF/IFAS, Florida-Friendly gardening tips to the public to help reduce non-point source pollution and to preserve water resources and natural areas.

Kim Gabel, Environmental Horticulture Agent for Monroe County Extension, developed the blog to reach a wide variety of Internet users. Monroe County Master Gardeners, Florida Keys residents (full- and part-time), and commercial landscape professionals all visit the blog to get landscaping information. Gabel also maintains the blog, which is updated every few months.

Each post focuses on a timely landscaping problem or update specific to the Keys. Topics have included citrus greening, ficus whiteflies, frangipani rust, and iguanas. The posts discuss, with photographs, how to identify pests, correct problems, and grow vegetables and flowers. Some posts simply provide interesting information relevant to all Keys residents, whether they garden actively or not. All articles are linked to University of Florida EDIS fact sheets written by Extension Specialists.

Florida Keys Landscape Advisor was started in July 2008, and its impact has already been substantial. The blog has 56 subscribers, and receives a minimum of 25 hits per day. Blogs are a fun way for Extension professionals to reach a wide variety of users, and are easy to set up, maintain, and track for visitors.

For more information, visit: www.floridakeyslandscapeadvisor.com.

 

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