Update on Thermal Therapy for HLB

HLB heat treatment

University of Florida researcher Reza Ehsani updated growers at Citrus Expo in August about research into the use of heat treatment of HLB-infected trees. Approximately 80,000 trees were heat treated in Florida in the past year, he says. Ehsani discusses some key issues regarding thermal therapy. “Finding the right time and temperature is critical to using this technique,” he says, … Read More

Hunt Discusses Citrus Acreage Reduction

hurricane

“I think it just continues to show … the effect of HLB,” citrus grower and Florida Citrus Commission Chairman Ellis Hunt Jr. says of the U.S. Department of Agriculture report that Florida citrus acreage fell 4 percent in a year. “I look forward to the day that the new groves going in the ground will offset the declining numbers.” Hunt … Read More

Grower Not Surprised by 4 Percent Acreage Decline

citrus acreage decline

“I don’t think there were any real surprises in the report today,” Indian River area grower and packer Cody Estes says in response to the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s report that Florida citrus acreage tumbled 4 percent. Florida acreage is now at 480,121, the lowest number since tracking began in 1966. “Hopefully with the anti-microbial treatments that are going on, … Read More

Planting New Groves in the Face of HLB

Planting new groves in the face of HLB has become a daunting task for Florida growers. At the recent Citrus Expo, University of Florida researcher Ute Albrecht offered suggestions for those taking on the challenge. “Among the important things to consider when planting new groves are the site preparation, the planting of the trees, weed management, irrigation and nutrition, and … Read More

Florida Citrus Acreage Skids 4 Percent to 480,121

citrus acreage tumbled

The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Commercial Citrus Inventory, released Monday, shows total Florida citrus acreage tumbled 4 percent from last year to the lowest level since tracking began in 1966. The gross loss of 31,365 acres is the largest loss recorded in a single season since one-year interval surveys began in 2009. New plantings – at 10,090 acres – are … Read More

Evaluation of HLB Treatments

By Stephanie Slinski Evaluating how well bactericides, nutritional programs or other treatments work against HLB can be difficult. Symptoms are not uniform between trees in a grove, and tree health fluctuates throughout the season, which may give the appearance of an effect. Rigorous field trials are the best way to test new treatments, but not every treatment program can be … Read More

Trees Look Good but PFD and HLB Will Impact Yield

PFD and HLB

Several citrus growers attending a grower forum in Sebring last week said groves are looking very good even though fruit production is expected to be low this season. John Barben, a Highlands County grower and the new president of Florida Citrus Mutual, summarized the situation. “Trees are looking good,” Barben said. “We had a lot of rain the last couple … Read More

New Knowledge on Citrus Black Spot

By Megan Dewdney, Jeff Rollins, Nan-Yi Wang and Ke Zhang Citrus black spot (CBS) has become established in the groves of Collier and Hendry counties. In other citrus-growing regions of the world where CBS is present, the sexual fruiting bodies of the fungus, known as pseudothecia, form in decomposing leaf litter. Approximately 50 to 180 days following leaf drop, the … Read More

Injecting Citrus Tree Trunks with Bactericide May Help Stem Greening

By: Brad Buck GAINESVILLE, Fla. — A chemical treatment known as a bactericide could help preserve citrus trees from the potentially deadly and costly greening disease, a new University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences (UF/IFAS) study shows. Citrus is estimated as a $10.9 billion-a-year industry in Florida and the finding could be key to helping the state’s … Read More

HLB and ‘Tolerance’ as a Practical Matter in Choosing Rootstocks

By Bill Castle (Editor’s note: Click on the graphs throughout the article to enlarge them.) By classic biological definition, a particular citrus rootstock-scion combination when infected with Candidatus Liberibacter asiaticus (CLas) would be considered tolerant if infected trees had no more than slight reductions in performance, sometimes accompanied by a reduced level of the pathogen. That definition implies that the … Read More

What to Expect from Brazil’s Next Citrus Season

By Marcos Fava Neves The first crop estimate was released in May for the 2016–17 citrus season in Brazil, which should be of great interest to Florida’s citrus industry. ACREAGE AND AGE The area of orange groves in Brazil, including all varieties, is 416,843 hectares (ha) —6.2 percent smaller than the 2015 figure. There was a considerable reduction of 27,882 … Read More

EPA Approves KPHITE® RX Systemic Bactericide for HLB Control

Florida-based Plant Food Systems announced that the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) approved the use of KPHITE® RX Systemic Bactericide for the control of HLB or citrus greening. The approval was granted based on research conducted by a panel of researchers demonstrating that the use of KPHITE® RX and Renew® RX reduces the effects of greening on citrus crops. Further field … Read More

Research on HLB-Tolerant Varieties Conducted in Gainesville

Research on HLB-tolerant trees and better citrus varieties is being conducted in Gainesville, outside the Florida citrus belt. University of Florida scientist Jose Chaparro discusses the work. “In Gainesville we have essentially the youngest citrus breeding program in Florida,” Chaparro says. “In the future, we hope to be able to provide both HLB and canker resistance in our selections.” Such … Read More

HLB Playbook for Growers in the Works

HLB Playbook

Michael Rogers, director of the University of Florida’s Citrus Research and Education Center, discussed the planned HLB Playbook at the recent Citrus Expo. The playbook should be available in print and on the Internet by January. Rogers says the playbook will feature “all the information we know about managing citrus groves in the face of HLB and how growers can … Read More

Bactericide Survey Results Summary

By Stephanie Slinski and Harold Browning (Editor’s note: Click on the graphs throughout the article to enlarge them.) Bactericides have been available to growers as a new tool to improve the health of HLB-infected trees since early March 2016. This use has been under a crisis declaration from the Florida commissioner of agriculture, but on August 15 of this year, … Read More

Complimentary Copy of Citrus Tree Nutrition Book for Growers

Sponsored Content A brand new book, “The Critical Importance of Citrus Tree Nutrition,” recently made its debut at Citrus Expo. Growers who attended the event were able to receive a free copy of the book, courtesy of TKI Crop Vitality. Due to the popularity of the book, TKI is extending the promotion to Florida citrus growers who have not yet … Read More

Panel on Bactericides for HLB Summarized

HLB

Harold Browning, chief operating officer of the Citrus Research and Development Foundation, summarizes a Citrus Expo panel in which four growers discussed their use of bactericides for HLB. The bactericides became available for use for HLB this spring. “They’re kind of working in the dark,” Browning says of the panelists and other growers trying bactericides. “They’re having to test and … Read More

Snively Discusses Use of Bactericides for HLB

bactericides for HLB

Jim Snively of Southern Gardens Citrus says his company is trying bactericides for HLB on one-tenth of its 10,000 citrus acres. The company is working with the Citrus Research and Development Foundation to analyze fruit drop, tree condition and more in blocks treated with bactericides. He believes it will take two to three years to determine if the bactericides are … Read More

Thank You for Another Great Year

Dear Growers, Industry Members and Friends: On behalf of everyone at Citrus Expo, we would like to extend our appreciation to all attendees, exhibitors and sponsors of this year’s event. We are overwhelmed with the generosity and support from all levels of participants that joined us this year. The Citrus Expo Shindig, held on Wednesday night, allowed everyone to relax … Read More