Meeting the Challenge of the Asian Citrus Psyllid in California Nurseries


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Purpose: The Asian citrus psyllid, Diaphorina citri, has been found in San Diego and Imperial Counties and it seems inevitable that this pest, the vector of Huanglongbing (HLB), also known as citrus greening disease will spread through California in the future.

From the experiences in Brazil, Florida, and Louisiana, there is a high probability that the California citrus industry will deal with HLB in the future.  It is extremely important that nursery operations be protected under greenhouses and/or screenhouses, yet few nurserymen in California have experience with having their whole nursery operation operate under protected conditions. It is important for the future of citrus in California that at this early stage of the Asian citrus psyllid infestation to assume that any nursery plant that has been fed upon by a psyllid should be considered to be latently infected with HLB, and movement of that plant to another location will only hasten the spread of HLB in the state.

Because of this, we are hosting a workshop where California nurserymen can benefit from hearing the experiences of other nurserymen operating in the presence of HLB and its vector and other pests and diseases that have forced the citrus nursery production under protecting conditions. The critical issues faced by the California nursery industry at these challenging times will be discussed with technical experts, state regulators, and representatives of financial institutions.

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