Hastings Downtown Facility
Low Impact Development Demonstration & Research
The Hastings Downtown Facility consists of approximately 64 acres of land located in the town of Hastings off Highway 13 in St. Johns County. Infrastructure at the Hastings Downtown Facility includes the main office building for the UF/IFAS Partnership, workshop, greenhouse, one enclosed barn, and two covered storage areas.
This facility includes approximately 15 acres for crop production research as well as 38 acres of wetland that borders Deep Creek. In 1987, the crop production area was converted to a citrus nursery for offsite faculty to conduct citrus canker and freeze protection research. The "heavier" soils found at the Hastings Downtown Facility are inappropriate for potato production but are acceptable for small fruit crops, sod, cole crop production, greenhouse vegetable production, and for landscape demonstrations.
The downtown unit is partitioned into production areas for alternative crop demonstration plantings. These alternative crops include a stone fruit orchard, muscadine grape vineyard, bunch grape vineyard, olive and pomegranate groves, two greenhouses for hydroponic vegetable production, and two "backyard gardens" demonstrating edible landscaping techniques and practices, as well as a "Florida Yards and Neighborhoods" demonstration landscape. All of these features are designed to demonstrate alternative crops and their production systems or alternative landscape approaches such as the Florida Yards and Neighborhoods program and the edible landscape concept.
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