This past Friday, I attended a Treasure Coast Regional Planning Council meeting and was treated to a wonderful presentation entitled: “A Brief History of Florida Water Management 1800-2000 Ponce to CERP.” The talk was given by Mr Bob Ulevich, president of Polymath Consulting Services, L.L.C. ” (http://polymathconsultingservices.com). Bob” is a beloved man who has a long history himself as senior water resources project manager for the South Florida Water Management District. Bob is considered the “father of water farming.”
His presentation left me speechless, once again being reminded of the history of agriculture in the state of Florida and its deep intertwinement with the state’s government and politicians….basically they are one in the same. This is how it is….St Lucie River/Indian River Lagoon and every inch of the rest of the state. “We” may not like this, but we must accept this…
With rumor that Adam Putnam, the Commissioner of Agriculture, could be our next governor, it is critical to refresh our memory on this historic relationship. Today I will share a book a from my historian mother’s shelf and also post the raw iPhone footage of Bob speaking before the council. It is my belief that we have got to learn to understand this historic relationship along with the power agriculture yields and “work with it,” in our quest for better water quality. They too are “naturalist” at heart….they are. Some of them in our South Floirda region have just “morphed,” and need some help getting back to their roots. 🙂 They hold the key to Florida’s water future.
Now for the book!
Full book link here thanks to my brother Todd!
The first page of the booklet talks about “getting back to nature” as farming is deeply intertwined with nature. Unfortunately today many of the intense practices of farming destroy nature and our water resources.
This is an another excerpt from the book:
….the independent countryman’s life must appeal, for he is a free man, master of himself, is conversant with nature in its many moods, enjoys the first fruits of the earth with the gleam still on them, and all its first impulses and pleasures….”
“No wonder, then, the cry of today is, “Back to the back and nature.” And back we must and will go, for this threatening catastrophe is too appalling to be passed by unchallenged.”
The catastrophe Mr Waldin is speaking of is that so many people were leaving America’s lands to go to the cities, that the “vitality of our nation was being drained proportionately…” Mr Waldin feared the lands would be empty and all would move to the cities…..It basically has happened, hasn’t it!
Below are the links to Mr Ulevich’s presentation, his presentation does not encompass the little book. I added that. Bob speaks on “A Brief History of Water Management 1800-2000 and although my “Jacqui home videos” are poor quality, you can hear the message. I had to break the videos up into 15 minutes sections as my You Tube account is not set to post anything over 15 minutes…Bob’s presentation is excellent. For those of you who have time to listen, you will enjoy it very much and learn a ton! Bob will finish his presentation next month covering approximately from 1910 to today.——– And that’s where we get to hear “the rest of the story….” 🙂
10 thoughts on “Truck Farming in the Everglades, and the “Original Florida Farmer,” St Lucie River/Indian River Lagoon”
Reblogged this on Jacqui Thurlow-Lippisch and commented:
I don’t know if I was moved or lead but what I was doing in Ukraine was trying to keep the small farmer from being financially crushed by big ag. like they have been in this country.It is literally a battle field now. Appartly some people said we are NOT going to accept this corpeate form of government where those that have the money decide everything and those that have no money decide nothing.
Interesting you are involved. Yes this is huge.
Hearing those who represent big ag. say how much they cared about the plight of the small farmer to me is like hearing OJ Simpson tell the reason he killed her was because he loved her. I hope I exsplained well the role selective breeding and the blue ribbin prizes at the farmers market led this country to be able to feed the world. Right now people have been running through the woods like wild Indians gathering saw palmetto berries. Suppose they were to select those plants that had the most of the chemical they were looking for and made sure those plants reproduced.
I saw a toddler in its mothers arms the other day at the supermarket. It reached out to grab something and its mother slapped its hand and said NO. The baby went through the store repeating what might have been its first word—-NO—-NO—-NO. I thought about a relative of mine whose kid reached out and grabbed stuff and the parents just bought everything. It would be interesting to find out how our politicians were raised. Are they the types of people who realize the world does not revolve around them or are they the types of people that realize this is a country that’s government is supposed to be by the people—for the people –and of the people
Great photos, Jacquie. Some of them remind me of Homestead, FL, and the many fields we had out there.
I have to learn more about Homestead. Such a cool place. I know they are having issues with over wet soil now due to some of the SFWMD projects in the area.
Hi Jacqui, I have a student who wants to do a middle school science fair project on water quality and the Indian River lagoon…and maybe marine life impact. She had done a project on water quality with and without trash 2years ago. Would you have any suggestions?
Sent from my iPad
That is just great! Please have them call me if they wish 772 486 3818 The youth is the answer more than anything.! Thanks Lori.
I would not have been able to do anything in Ukraine if it were not for the Baker Creek seed company that I think is a one of a kind national treasure. I told a young man named Jerod what I was doing and he said because I was buying such large quanity that he would lower the price to a dollar a pack. The small farmer does not have the raw horsepower that is at big ags desposial but I think it is still possible for the small farmer to be a strong competitor of big ag. if the 2 don’t kill each other.