Wauchula citrus grower Kenny Sanders discussed on Wednesday the use of bactericides with HLB, production and pricing with more than 40 others at a grower roundtable in Wauchula. Like several other growers, he says his early-mid orange production was down this season (by 30 percent) while his Valencia crop was up 7 to 8 percent. “Pound solids were down everywhere,” he says. He adds that pricing for Valencias is a bright spot. “It looks like we’re going to have $2.30 to $2.35 (per pound of solids) for Valencias. So that is very positive. If there’s enough money out there, we’ll figure out how to grow the oranges.” Like virtually everyone else who spoke, Sanders used the bactericides made available this spring for use against HLB. “I went over all my groves with the bactericides so far one time, and I’ll at least do it one more time. I heard them say in the meeting that the spring and the fall was the best time to do it, so I’ll put my next application on in the fall.” Sanders says he doesn’t know when he can tell if the bactericides help, or how much: “None of us really knows for sure, but it gives us another ray of hope.” The roundtable was co-hosted by LeAnna Himrod, executive director of Peace River Valley Citrus Growers Association, and Steve Futch, multi-county citrus Extension agent.
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