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Fort Lauderdale Research and Education Center

Fort Lauderdale Research and Education Center

Dr. Kimberly Moore

Associate Center Director and Professor

Environmental Horticulture

Dr. Moore’s research, teaching, and extension programs focus on sustainable nutrient management solutions for ornamental plants. Her lab investigates the use of alternative growing substrates as well as plant response to irrigation water high in salts (from reclaimed wastewater to salt water due to saltwater intrusion). She collaborates with researchers and industry leaders to evaluate bedding plants and rose cultivar performance in her trial gardens on site.

  • Research

    Research: Sustainable plant production

    Dr. Moore conducts applied research on the use of alternative growing substrates (like compost) and alternative water sources (reclaimed wastewater) to grow containerized ornamental plants.  With droughts as well as increased saltwater intrusion, growers are faced with potential water restrictions. To reduce saltwater intrusion, cities are reducing well-field pumping and pursuing alternative water supplies like wastewater. There are prospective savings to using wastewater assuming growers concerns about salt levels are addressed. Damage due to salts (from over-fertilization, wastewater, or salt water) can impact the production of bedding plants and foliage plants. There is clear potential for increased use of reclaimed wastewater to grow containerized ornamental plants but there remain some barriers. Reclaimed wastewater qualities tend to vary from city to city and the salt content of reclaimed water tends to be higher than potable water. It is evident from previous research that plant response is varied to reclaimed wastewater and growth appears to be related to electrical conductivity (EC) levels as well as sodium (Na) levels.

  • Teaching


    Dr. Moore teaches online courses as part of the Environmental Horticulture Department curriculum.  She currently teaches Elementary Organic and Biological Chemistry and Nutritional Management of Nursery Crops in addition to Advanced Nutritional Management and Getting Published in Horticulture.  She has MS and PhD students working in her lab and serves on graduate committees for Environmental Horticulture, Soil and Water Science, Agronomy, and Entomology students. She is the director of the Environmental Horticulture Management undergraduate certificate and chairs the Environmental Horticulture department academic programs committee.


  • Extension

    Extension: Statewide sustainable solutions

    Dr. Moore is a regular presenter for the National Garden Club Association as well as for various master gardener training programs in the state of Florida.  She presents on general botany, soil health, plant nutrition, diagnosing nutritional disorders, water conversation, composting, plant variety trials, and other topics related to her area of expertise.  She also is a presenter in the Broward County school system working with the Global scholar’s program to educate middle school students on science, technology, and mathematics.

  • Student Highlights


    UF Center for Undergraduate Research hosted the 25th Annual Spring Undergraduate Research Symposium on Monday, April 1, 2024.  Ms. Claire Pierce presented her research on using potassium to improve the growth of coleus plants watered with saltwater. Claire works in Dr. Moore’s lab and is completing her BS in Plant Science.  She was accompanied by her lab mate Ms. Maria Carvajal who also works with Dr. Moore and will complete her BS in Plant Science this summer with Claire.  Maria developed a tabletop hydroponic system that schoolteachers can use in their classrooms.  Maria is working with the YMCA of South Florida helping aftercare kids grow lettuce and herbs hydroponically for Earth Day.  Please congratulate these plant science scholars on their hard work.

    Dr. Moore also had two MS students complete their degrees in the spring of 2024.  Congratulations to Maria Rose-Voge and Givanna Roper for completing their MS degrees in Horticulture.

  • Trial Garden
  • Lab Team

    Lab Member Information

    • Luci Fisher, Biological Scientist II                        
    • Maria Rose-Voge, Grad Student                          
    • Anthony Gross. Grad Student                             
    • Givanna Roper, Grad Student                             
    • Shuang Zhou, Grad Student                               
    • Lorna Bravo. Grad Student                                  
    • Claire Pierce, Undergrad Student                        



3205 College Avenue
Davie, FL 33314

  • Education
    • PhD - Horticulture, Iowa State University, 1995
    • M.S. - Horticulture, Iowa State University, 1992
    • B.S. - Environmental Science and Botany, minor in Chemistry, Eastern Illinois University, 1990

  • Curriculum Vitae
  • Publications
  • Professional Service and Awards
    • American Society of Horticulture Science (president-elect, president, chairman) - 2020-2023USDA-NIFA Southern Region Teaching Excellence - 2018
    • American Society of Horticulture Science (ASHS) Fellow - 2016
    • University of Florida Academy of Distinguished Teaching Scholars – 2014
    • American Society of Horticulture Science (ASHS) Outstanding Graduate Educator – 2014
    • North American College and Teachers of Agriculture Southern Regional Outstanding Teacher – 2014
    • North American College and Teachers of Agriculture (NACTA) Fellow – 2011
  • Videos
  • Interviews