Blog Posts

Our Extension Agents write blog posts every month to get information to the public about hot topics in their field. Here are a few highlights:


Roselle, The Florida Cranberry

Roselle, a relative of hibiscus, was once used widely as an edible plant in Florida. The flowers are less showy than other hibiscus varieties, but their calyces (sepals at the base of the flower) are amazing! As the flower dies the calyx gets fleshy and in the sunlight shines like rubies. But even better than its beauty is its sweet/tart flavor. Florida pioneers grew roselle in their gardens to make cranberry sauce to serve with the Thanksgiving turkey, they called it the Florida Cranberry. The Caribbean islanders make a special rum drink at Christmas made with steeped roselle calyces which they call sorrel. One ingredient in Red Zinger tea is roselle calyces, and it’s called hibiscus tea!  

Michelle’s Roselle,The Florida Cranberry blog post is available HERE

City night skyline

Climate Change is a Current and Future Issue

The nation’s economy, public health, infrastructure, and natural resources face an immediate and continued threat from climate change impacts, warns the comprehensive 4th National Climate Assessment (NCA4) released last Friday.

The report is broken down into chapters on sectors such as water, energy, land use, forestry, coastal effects, marine resources, and more. There are regional reports that look at how different geographic areas of the U.S. stand to be impacted. You can download the various chapters here or interact with the report online at

Alicia’s Climate Change blog post is available HERE!

Sargassum macroalgae ashore on Big Coppitt Key. Photo by Shelly KruegerHeavy Sargassum Year Forecast for Florida Keys

This summer, you may have noticed tons of brown organic material washed up on beaches and decaying all over the Atlantic side of the Florida Keys. But what is it, really? And why is it appearing on our beaches? It’s called sargassum, and it is brown algae, or seaweed, that floats in massive mats out on the open ocean. The area sargassum comes from is called the Sargasso Sea, which is not a true sea at all, but an area far offshore in the Atlantic Ocean between the eastern coast of Florida and Bermuda...

Shelly’s Sargassum blog post is available HERE!

Check out more of our Extension Agents’ Blogs on our University of Florida, IFAS Extension Blog Page HERE!

Please email for additional information.

Extension Services is an Equal Opportunity Institution. UF/IFAS Extension, University of Florida, Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences, Nick T. Place, dean for UF/IFAS Extension. Single copies of UF/IFAS Extension publications (excluding 4-H and youth publications) are available free to Florida residents from county UF/IFAS Extension offices.