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UF Research Programs We Will Be Visiting:


Dr. Zhanao Deng

Dr. Zhanao Deng develops new ornamental plant cultivars for Florida growers and consumers.

Current breeding efforts are directed toward the developing and releasing new caladium and gerbera cultivars, genetic sterilizing lantana and nandina, and evaluating and selecting superior Florida-native plants.


Dr. Vance M. Whitaker

Dr. Whitaker develops strawberry varieties for Florida. His breeding program is enhanced through genetic research and through collaborations with the GCREC faculty team and Florida industry. 


Dr. Seonghee Lee

Dr. Seonghee Lee’s research program focuses on the field of strawberry molecular genetics and genomics to apply modern molecular genetic/genomic tools for UF strawberry breeding program and support new cultivar development.


Dr. Sam Hutton

Dr. Samuel Hutton’s research focuses on developing improved tomato hybrids and parents adapted to Florida’s subtropical conditions and relevant to the Florida tomato industry.


Dr. Tong Geon Lee

Dr. Tong Geon Lee's program focuses on the study of tomato genetics and on its application in solving challenging problems in tomato production.


Dr. Natalia A. Peres

Dr. Natalia Peres conducts basic and applied research on important diseases affecting strawberry production in Florida.

The goal of her program is to develop a better understanding of the etiology of the diseases and the environmental factors affecting their development, and to provide more effective disease control recommendations.


Subtropical Plant Breeding Facility

Dover, FL 


Dr. Raymond Jacobs

Dr.Raymond Jacobs, Manager of Driscoll's strawberry and blueberry breeding programs developing new varieties for Florida and subtropical regions around the world.

Student Coordinators: Lushan Ghimire and Natalia Salinas 

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