Optional Pre-conference Field Trips

Sunday, October 16, 2022
12:30pm – 4:30pm

(Offered solely to in-person registrants - RAIN OR SHINE!)

These activities are offered on a first-come, first-served, basis. Register early to ensure admission. Advance registration and in-person attendance are required.

Trip One: Bok Tower Gardens

Bok Tower by Larry Crovo This photo, “Bok Tower” is copyright (c) 2015 Larry Crovo and made available under a Attribution-NoDerivatives 4.0 International license

Located in Lake Wales Florida, Bok Tower Gardens is designated as a National Historic monument, and to garden lovers in Florida, we know it as a botanical garden treasure. Join us for a special tour of this historic garden, led by Bok Tower Garden professionals who will guide us through one of the greatest works of famed landscape architect Frederick Law Olmsted, Jr., a meandering and informal woodland setting of palms, ferns, and flowering plants. We will hear the bells ring out from the 205 foot art deco-neo Gothic singing tower carillon. Bok Tower also gives us a fascinating, one-of-a-kind opportunity to see some of Florida’s rarest plant species in the Endangered Plant Garden and our trip will be capped off by a stop at their garden nursery at the beautiful visitor center. It will surely be an inspiring afternoon at Bok Tower Gardens .

Trip Two: UF/IFAS Mid-Florida Research and Education Center (MREC) and Island Grove Wine Company at Formosa Gardens

UF/IFAS Mid-Florida Research and Education Center

The UF/IFAS Mid-Florida Research and Education Center in Apopka, Florida has been a hub for agriculture research for years. This visit will tour you through the unique UF/IFAS research projects including foliage plants, hops, weeds, and olive trees.

Part two of this tour takes us to Island Grove Wine Company at Formosa Gardens where we will visit George Chen’s tropical fruit farm with mangos, lychee, olives, grape vines and more. Then we will head into the Island Grove Wine Company’s tasting room to sample locally produced wines such as Sunshine State Sangria and Blueberry Wine.

Details of Participation:
  • Field trip registration will close once the limit for the trip is reached.
  • Indicate your trip preference when registering online.
  • Field trips are offered solely to in-person registrants.
  • A 50% cancellation fee applies if a refund is requested.
  • Snacks and bottled water will be provided
  • Buses board at 12:15pm sharp.
  • The weather will be hot, and we will be outdoors. Wear cool, lightweight clothing, and comfortable shoes. A hat and/or sunscreen is advised. Bottled water and snacks will be provided.

UF/IFAS Extension

Extension is a partnership between state, federal, and county governments to provide scientific knowledge and expertise to the public. The University of Florida (UF), together with Florida A&M University (FAMU), administers the Florida Cooperative Extension Service. UF/IFAS Extension encompasses thousands of Extension faculty members, scientists, educators, administrative staff, and volunteers, all working to provide solutions for your life.


OCI stands for the Office of Conferences & Institutes. It is a full service conference planning agency at the University of Florida. OCI was created to support the Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences (IFAS) mission to develop knowledge in agriculture, human and natural resources, and to make that knowledge available to people to sustain and enhance the quality of life.

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