Keep CTV Under Control

Jim Rogers Diseases, Tip of the Week

By Amit Levy Citrus tristeza virus (CTV) infects the citrus phloem. CTV infects almost all citrus varieties, but it causes different disease symptoms depending on the virus isolate, the citrus variety and scion-rootstock combination. Florida has three dominant strains of CTV: T36, a decline-causing strain T30, which normally does not cause severe disease VT, a stem-pitting causing strain CTV is …

Now Is the Time to Start Scouting for Rust Mites

Jim Rogers Pests, Tip of the Week

By Xavier Martini Rust mites are recurrent pests in Florida that pose problems mostly in fresh citrus production. While severe infestations can lead to fruit drop, leaf injury and abscission, rust mites cause aesthetic damage in the form of sharkskin or bronzing on the skin of fresh fruit (Figure 1A). Fresh fruit requires clean and undamaged skin, and any abrasions …

Preparing to Plant Cover Crops

Jim Rogers Cover Crops, Tip of the Week

By Sarah Strauss If you’ve been exploring methods to improve your soil health, chances are you’ve come across the use of cover crops. Even though we call them “crops,” these plants are not harvested and are only planted to improve soil health. The benefits of cover crops to soil health include increasing soil organic matter and microbial diversity and activity …

Consistency Is Key in Rootstock Field Trials

Jim Rogers Rootstocks, Tip of the Week

By Bill Castle Today, at least three things seem to be true about Florida citrus rootstock field trials: There is an unprecedented number of them underway or soon to be planted. The sponsors are many, including the University of Florida, U.S. Department of Agriculture, Citrus Research and Development Foundation, Citrus Research and Field Trial Foundation and the Multi-Agency Coordination Group. …

Assessing the Safety of a Water Distribution System

Jim Rogers Irrigation, Regulation, Tip of the Week

By Taylor O’Bannon, Matt Krug and Michelle Danyluk The U.S. Food and Drug Administration recently proposed changes to the pre-harvest Agricultural Water (Subpart E) section of the Food Safety Modernization Act Produce Safety Rule (PSR). Removing the annual water distribution system inspection is not one of the proposed changes. Rather, water testing for generic E. coli and developing a microbial …

Gibberellic Acid Not Recommended in Spring for HLB Trees

Jim Rogers HLB Management, Production, Tip of the Week

By Tripti Vashisth Recent research has shown benefits of gibberellic acid (GA) application (monthly from September to January) in improving yield and canopy density of HLB-affected trees. These findings have caught the attention of Florida citrus growers. Many have indicated that they are applying GA in their groves as per the University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences …

Put Predators to Work Against Lebbeck Mealybug

Jim Rogers Pests, Research, Tip of the Week

By Eric Middleton and Lauren Diepenbrock Lebbeck mealybug is an emerging pest in Florida citrus. Infestations can damage fruit, flowers and branches. The pest can even kill young trees in severe cases. Lebbeck mealybug is often difficult to manage with insecticides alone due to the pest’s tendency to feed in protected spaces and the thick wax that covers adult mealybugs …

Growers to Gather at Citrus Institute

Jim Rogers HLB Management, Research, Tip of the Week

By Chris Oswalt, Mongi Zekri, Ajia Paolillo and Lourdes Pérez Cordero Huanglongbing (HLB) continues to impact citrus-producing areas of Florida. The 2022 Florida Citrus Growers’ Institute is an opportunity for Florida citrus growers to come together to learn about effective management of HLB and other challenges affecting the industry. This year’s event will be held Tuesday, April 5 from 8:30 …

Pointers for Pre-emergent Herbicide Use

Jim Rogers Herbicides, Tip of the Week

By Ramdas Kanissery Weeds emerging in citrus rows are problematic as they compete for resources with the trees, support pests and interfere with grove operations like irrigation (Figure 1). Hence, effective strategies to control weed emergence should be in place.   Pre-emergence (or residual) herbicides are an excellent tool for the long-term suppression of weeds in tree rows. These herbicides …

Guidance on Chlorpyrifos Recordkeeping

Jim Rogers Agriculture, Pesticides, Tip of the Week

By Brett Bultemeier and Lauren Diepenbrock The revocation of chlorpyrifos residues and tolerances that became effective on Feb. 28, 2022, caused some confusion and concern when it was first announced. The legal description provided by the Environmental Protection Agency is challenging to fully understand. Therefore, the Pesticide Information Office from the University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences …

Get Canker Before It Gets You

Jim Rogers Diseases, Tip of the Week

By Megan Dewdney Spring is around the corner, and Florida’s first wave of bloom is here. But there is no time to relax and enjoy the flowers because citrus diseases wait for no grower. Young fruitlets become susceptible to canker toward the end of March to the beginning of April. Missing that key window of protection — if the weather …

What to Do About Bingo Stem Dieback

Jim Rogers Diseases, Research, Tip of the Week

By Christopher Vincent, Megan Dewdney and Liliana Cano Bingo is a relatively new and unfamiliar variety, which growers initially sought as a positive alternative. However, it presents some unique production challenges. Bingo is desirable because its high-quality, low-seeded fruits are ripe in October, a valuable harvest window for Florida growers. But in the early years of its propagation, some nurseries …

Keep an Eye Out for Postbloom Fruit Drop This Spring

Jim Rogers Fruit Drop, Tip of the Week, Weather

By Megan M. Dewdney Postbloom fruit drop (PFD) is a flower disease mainly caused by the fungus Colletotrichum acutatum. The fungus is present on citrus trees throughout the year but survives by producing resting structures on leaves and stems. The fungus becomes stimulated to produce spores by substances from the early flowers. These early spores infect the initial flowers and …

Achieving Successful Nursery-Grower-Researcher Partnerships

Jim Rogers Research, Rootstocks, Tip of the Week

By Bill Castle, Fred Gmitter and Jude Grosser The University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences (UF/IFAS) Citrus Research and Education Center (CREC) plant improvement team has long been engaged in field research to evaluate new scions and rootstocks. That effort continues and has involved trials on public and private property. While public sites are valuable, they are …

Plan Insect and Mite Management for 2022

Jim Rogers HLB Management, Pests, Tip of the Week

By Lauren Diepenbrock Insect and mite management is a year-round challenge in Florida citrus. With the warm climate, pests are at the ready as soon as plant resources are available to them. With knowledge of insect and mite biology in relation to tree phenology, plans to protect fruit and maintain productive citrus trees can be developed. MAJOR PESTSPopulations of some …

Paraquat Alternatives for Citrus Weed Control

Jim Rogers Herbicides, Tip of the Week

By Ramdas Kanissery Paraquat is an herbicide labeled for various crops, including citrus, for post-emergent weed control. When applied during the early growth stage, paraquat controls many annual grasses and broadleaf weeds commonly found in Florida citrus. Additionally, paraquat typically offers relatively good crop safety in citrus due to its lack of translocation in the plant. This makes it the …

Freeze Damage: Preparation and Recovery

Jim Rogers Tip of the Week

By Amir Rezazadeh Low temperatures can cause serious injury to leaf, wood and fruits of citrus trees. An extended freeze can kill a citrus tree. A rapid temperature decrease or a longer duration of freezing temperature can worsen the damage. Because preparation is paramount in protecting citrus trees, growers should use the Florida Automated Weather Network. The network provides information …