Florida Phosphate Operations
It’s no secret that agriculture is one of Florida’s largest industries. At Mosaic, we respect our farmer neighbors and are proud to produce crop nutrients that help them grow more food on less land.
As a large landowner, Mosaic is also engaged in agricultural operations on its unmined la nd and reclaimed land.
Mosaic manages 5,700 acres of citrus on its property in Polk and Hardee counties, mostly early and mid-season varieties and Valencia oranges. These groves produce about a million boxes annually, and are used in Tropicana, Cutrale, and other major brands.
Land that was formerly mined and reclaimed has also proven successful in several agricultural land uses. About 500 acres of the citrus groves we manage are on reclaimed land. In addition, hundreds of additional acres are used for sod, cypress, sorghum, alfalfa, perennial peanuts, ornamentals and industrial sweet potatoes for ethanol production.
Sod production for residential markets has been a major success. The reclaimed soil has a small percentage of clay which helps binds the roots. We have more than 250 acres in production with more acreage anticipated in the future. All the sod is grown utilizing surface water.
We have also planted several acres of Pomegranate and Pecan trees, and are working with the Florida Olive Council and UF-IFAS on a research project. While it began in 2014 with only 50 olive trees, we installed a high-density trial of approximately 400 commercial varieties in May 2015.
Reclaimed Clay Settling Areas
Reclaimed clay settling areas (CSAs) can also be used for agriculture and silviculture. For example, crops of cabbage, bell peppers, mustard greens, corn and zucchini squash have all been commercially marketed from reclaimed CSAs.
The clay soil is very fertile, however, must be managed differently than typical Florida sandy soil due to the way it compacts and absorbs water. After more than 25 years of experience with CSAs, we’ve experienced success with eucalyptus and cottonwood trees sold for mulch on CSAs, and even started a few acres of Pongamia (Indian beech) in 2014.
For almost 500 years, the cattle industry has contributed significantly to Florida’s economy and natural resources. Multi-generational family ranches have cared for the land, provided employment for many residents and contributed greatly to the local tax base.
Mosaic appreciates our relationship with cattle industry representatives and leases more than 120,000 acres of our lands for livestock grazing. This includes reclaimed uplands, reclaimed CSAs and unmined land.
For more information about our agriculture operations, contact 863-375-4338. For land leasing questions, contact 863-773-6007.