Specialty Crop Grower Sees Success with Finger Limes

Tacy CalliesCalifornia Corner

By Len Wilcox When Jim Shanley retired from his highly successful career in commodity trading, he knew what he wanted to do and where he wanted to do it: farm specialty crops in the hills overlooking Morro Bay, California. His choice of crops, however, was not so clear. He started with avocados, but it was a curious little fruit from … Read More

California Ag Chief Prepared to Battle HLB

Len WilcoxCalifornia Corner, HLB Management

citrus greening

In an interview at the Citrus Research Board’s (CRB) annual conference last month, Karen Ross, secretary of the California Department of Food and Agriculture (CDFA), said the present status of huanglongbing (HLB) disease is similar to another disease that challenged the California citrus industry years ago. Pierce’s disease was a potentially devastating threat long before HLB. “One of the things … Read More

Freeze Alerts by Phone for California Citrus Growers

Len WilcoxCalifornia Corner, Weather

Freeze alerts by phone will be available this winter for California citrus growers. California Citrus Mutual (CCM) is implementing a new system to help Central Valley growers stay updated on freeze alerts. Growers can sign up for text notifications to be alerted when the CCM Central Valley Weather Watch forecast is updated. This will include updates during critical nights. To … Read More

Ventura County Growers Tackle Troubles in Paradise

Tacy CalliesCalifornia Corner

By Len Wilcox Ventura County, California, is perhaps the prettiest place in the world to grow lemons. Nestled between the golden slopes of the coast range and the relaxing seaside and azure-blue ocean, it is just north of Los Angeles on the famous Pacific Coast Highway. In town, Ventura seems far too urban to be an agricultural center; it is … Read More

California Department of Pesticide Regulation to Study Chlorpyrifos

Len WilcoxCalifornia Corner, Regulation

A new effort is underway in California to further regulate chlorpyrifos. On August 18, the California Department of Pesticide Regulation (DPR) issued a directive for interim mitigation measures to address health risks from the pesticide. This action marks the start of a public and scientific review of DPR’s revised draft risk assessment that could lead to increased restrictions statewide. At … Read More

CUPS Test to Begin at California Research Center

Len WilcoxCalifornia Corner

University of California (UC) scientists at the Lindcove Research and Extension Center (LREC) will soon begin to test the effect of growing citrus under protective screen (CUPS). CUPS is a proposed new method of controlling huanglongbing (HLB), or citrus greening disease, by keeping psyllids, small insects known to spread the disease, away from the trees. The test will evaluate the … Read More

HLB Found in California Citrus Birthplace

Abbey TaylorCalifornia Corner, Citrus Greening

citrus greening

A citrus tree in the city of Riverside tested positive for huanglongbing (HLB) disease. The detection is the first case of HLB found in a major citrus-producing county and the most northern in California. The California Department of Food and Agriculture (CDFA) confirmed the detection of HLB disease in a sample taken from a grapefruit tree located in a Riverside … Read More

UC Puts HLB Research Online in Easy-To-Read Updates

Len WilcoxCalifornia Corner

citrus greening

California citrus farmers have their ears perked for all news related to Asian citrus psyllid (ACP), huanglongbing (HLB) disease and HLB research, but some of the very latest advances have been available only in highly technical research journals, often by subscription only. University of California (UC) Cooperative Extension scientists are now translating the research into readable summaries and posting them … Read More

California’s Pesticide Worker Laws Updated

Tacy CalliesCalifornia Corner, Citrus, Regulation

By Len Wilcox Effective January 1, California updated its pesticide worker safety standards to comply with the new federal Worker Protection Standard. The update addressed re-entry to application exclusion zones, fieldworker training, new posting requirements, eyewash equipment and hazard communication. It also made other refinements to the state’s existing standards. Bill Griffin, pesticide supervisor for the Fresno County Agriculture Commissioner, … Read More

California County Supervisor Makes Plea to Stop HLB

Len WilcoxCalifornia Corner

citrus greening

San Bernardino County Supervisor James Ramos is asking his constituents to help preserve the citrus industry and protect citrus trees in their area from HLB. In an article he wrote for a community newspaper (The Press-Enterprise), Ramos pointed out that citrus is a staple crop of San Bernardino County and has a rich history that traces as far back as … Read More

Argentine Lemons Entering U.S. Market Despite Objections

Len WilcoxCalifornia Corner, Legislative, Trade

The Trump administration is moving to permanently allow Argentine lemons to enter the U.S. market. This is despite objections from California citrus growers and warnings of dire consequences for California lemons, including exposing the industry to new pests and diseases. “It is evident that the California citrus industry is the pawn in a greater trade deal between the Trump administration … Read More

Drought Remains Top Concern Despite Recent Floods

Kelsey FryCalifornia Corner

By Len Wilcox The wettest year in recent history is bringing relief to California growers. The relief may be short-lived, however, unless state water officials make permanent changes in water management and address the supply shortfall during drought years. A new executive order has been issued by the state to improve conservation measures and water-management procedures. The short-term outlook is … Read More

Citrus Group Objects to New Rules for Pesticide Use Near Schools

Len WilcoxCalifornia Corner, Regulation

Over industry objections, the California Department of Pesticide Regulation (DPR) is continuing its effort to create new regulations for the use of agricultural pesticides near school sites and licensed child day care facilities. A recently published revision included changes made due to input received during public review. This revision did not go far enough to satisfy objections. After reviewing the … Read More

Searching for Citrus Varieties Resistant to HLB

Len WilcoxCalifornia Corner, Research

Three old trees at the Lindcove Research and Extension Center (REC) might hold the key to huanglongbing (HLB) resistance, according to an article in the University of California (UC) publication California Agriculture. The Lindcove REC is located on the eastern edge of the San Joaquin Valley near Visalia, California. Several of the citrus varieties tested at Lindcove REC were bred … Read More

New Case of HLB Found in Southern California

Len WilcoxCalifornia Corner, Psyllids

acp

Huanglongbing (HLB) was confirmed in a single citrus tree in the city of La Habra in Orange County, California, on April 11, 2017. This new find will result in a new HLB quarantine area, which will link the existing quarantines into a contiguous zone spanning portions of Los Angeles and Orange counties. Additionally, two samples of Asian citrus psyllids (ACP) … Read More

The Pest Partnerships that Threaten Citrus

Josh McGillCalifornia Corner, Citrus, Pests

Biocontrol of Asian citrus psyllids can be improved by controlling ants. By Kelsey Schall and Mark Hoddle More than a decade of battle with the Asian citrus psyllid (ACP)-huanglongbing (HLB) complex has drained the vigor from Florida’s citrus industry, costing billions in disease management and production losses. With HLB established in parts of urban Southern California, the second largest citrus … Read More