A newly established quarantine area has been declared following the detection of HLB in five trees in the Valley Center area of California’s San Diego County. The trees were located on a residential property with non-commercial citrus acreage. This is the first time the disease has been confirmed in Valley Center, marking the third area in San Diego County to have had a positive detection of HLB.
The California Department of Food and Agriculture (CDFA) is working with the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) and San Diego County to ensure the HLB-infected trees are removed in a timely manner in order to prevent the spread of HLB into neighboring areas.
This detection results in the establishment of an HLB quarantine area with a 5-mile radius around the find site. The quarantine prohibits residents and commercial operations from moving any host plants within or out of the area. Fruit grown in the area must undergo additional mitigation steps before it can be transported within or from this area. The quarantine zone does not intersect with the existing quarantine boundaries in the Oceanside and Rancho Bernardo areas of San Diego County.
An updated HLB quarantine map for California is available here. The link can be checked for future quarantine expansions, should they occur.
CDFA staff is in communication with the property owner to ensure the infected trees are removed and are in the midst of implementing a treatment program for all citrus trees within 250 meters of the find site. By taking this action, a critical reservoir of the disease and its vectors will be removed. This action is essential to protect other citrus trees on the property, neighboring citrus trees and the community’s citrus from HLB.
CDFA, in partnership with USDA, local county agricultural commissioners and the citrus industry, continues to pursue a strategy of controlling the spread of the HLB-spreading Asian citrus psyllid.
Citrus growers in San Diego County with questions about this detection can contact Grower Liaison Sandra Zwaal at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Source: Citrus Pest & Disease Prevention Program
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