Florida's citrus greening: a disease without a cure, but could be mitigated
The disease is killing Florida's Oranges.
By: Irene Sans Updated: November 6, 2019 - 5:58 PM
Bacteria is killing the second leading industry in Florida agriculture, specifically, our oranges. Florida’s orange production has been on decline for many years, in fact there are only a handful of citrus farms left in the state. Hurricanes and storms affect orange production, but a small insect, a psyllid, plays a part as well.
The insect originated in Asia and was spotted in South Florida around 2005. Although the insect does not produce the bacteria, it does spread it with ease, starting in the tree’s root and making its way up the leaves. Once infected the oranges are not orange, they are green, hence the name citrus greening. This disease is considered one of the most critical plant diseases in the planet, and there is no turning back once a tree is infected.
Although the disease can’t be cured, the spread can be mitigated. That is exactly what Uncle Matt's. a local Organic Orange Farm, is trying to do, using another insect to limit the psyllid population. Certified meteorologist George Waldenberger visited the farm and investigated further how this is being done. Watch Waldenberger's report below