2017 CARES Recipient
Farm: 4 J’s Orchards
Location: Plant City, Florida
Date of Origination: 1973
Joe and Juanita Lanier grow fresh from Florida peaches in Plant City, Florida on land they originally purchased in 1973. Lanier’s family had farmed previously on the surrounding land dating all the way back to 1852. With a desire to diversify, Lanier and his brother ventured into the peach business and haven’t looked back since. Immersing himself in peach production, Lanier saw it was important to implement conservation practices, known as Best Management Practices (BMPs), throughout the orchard.
Some of the BMPs Lanier has implemented include Tensiometers placed at multiple depths in the soil to measure soil moisture. He has also used leaf/ tissue sampling to identify nutrient requirements of his peach trees. BMPs work together to help farmers and ranchers reduce water use, improve water quality and maintain soil’s health. Lanier has certainly accomplished this and is able to preserve his land for generations to come.
Lanier shared that on a trip to China he noticed how terrible the air pollution affects their natural world making agricultural production impossible. Lanier is motivated by this to make every effort to protect the natural resources he depends on. He greatly enjoys meeting the customers who buy his peaches and sharing his story of environmental stewardship with them. Even on the most difficult days of production agriculture, Lanier is always thankful to be a Florida farmer.