Later today, I’m giving a brief presentation and report at one of our groves on Early Pride dieback. We’re using two documents: 1) a pamphlet going over our experience in managing the problem, and 2) a paper co-authored with USDA on Early Pride. Here’s the link to both documents.
Alturas, Florida, has been hit hard with citrus greening. Trees in groves continue to be removed at an increasing rate. This photo, next to one of our groves, shows the devastating result of this disease. At least the risk of transmission of disease to our grove is reduced once this grove is taken out.
Recently, we’ve been looking at different roostocks for our citrus plantings. As seen in this mind map, there are no less than 15 or 20 different information sources that need to be considered. Much of this information is gathered over time, but there comes a point where you to refresh your memory to see if anything has changed since the last time you looked. How do you access and manage all the information that goes into making this kind of decision? If you’re like most people, you talk to others, email back and forth, read and you probably check 20 or so websites for the most recent information. That’s a lot of work, and becomes even more so if you have to do it more than once. I can’t disclose all the details yet, but I’m working with the University of Florida on a solution that will help growers make better rootstock decisions. Stay tuned for more later!
Early Pride is a relatively new licensed citrus variety that’s being planted more often in Florida. It’s popular as a fresh fruit because of its early season maturity, large fruit size, deep orange color and sweet flavor. If you’re thinking about working with Early Pride, there are some things you need to know about its tendency for dieback in leaves, twigs and shoots. From our recent experience, the dieback seems manageable, but there are some things you should do to treat and prevent it. I tracked the development, causes, treatment and recovery of dieback in one of our groves over a year from when the trees first went into the ground to determine what are the causes and treatments for Early Pride dieback. Almost all the trees eventually recovered by following the practices we worked out.
This is Part 1 of two posts on managing dieback in Early Pride citrus. This first post discusses symptoms and disease progress, and Part 2 will cover causes, treatment and recovery. This post will be updated as more information comes in. The last updates were on September 17, 2014.
• Aperture:ƒ/8• Credit:Steve Rogers• Camera:DMC-LX7• Taken:November 27, 2013• Copyright:© 2013 Steven Rogers Photography All Rights Reserved• Flash fired:yes• Focal length:4.7mm• ISO:100• Location:27° 56.251′ 0″ N 81° 53.307′ 0″ W• Shutter speed:1/80s• Title:Early Pride Dieback
Today, we’re starting an experiment to see if olive trees will tolerate the caretaking conditions we typically apply to citrus groves. In the instance shown in this photo, this is one of several olive trees planting within a new planting of citrus. This is far attention more than commercial olives would see in practice, but it’s a step in the direction to see what’s involved if we want to start retrofitting citrus groves with olive trees. Perhaps this might be gradual replacement or not, but this experiment will allow us to get olives in a wide variety of locations to see how they perform over time.
• Aperture:ƒ/2.8• Camera:DMC-LX7• Taken:September 10, 2014• Flash fired:yes• Focal length:4.7mm• ISO:100• Shutter speed:1/320s
Today, I had a chance to drive around the citrus groves in this area with some visitors from California. We talked about alternative crops, marketing, and variety licensing among other things. During the visit, we happened upon a section of one of the groves showing what I would call classic, textbooks symptoms of greening. Seeing the differences in the patterns in these symptoms can be subtle, but once you get accustomed to the general look, you begin to recognize them more easily. Here are eight examples we saw today.
Citrus groves in Florida can often be overgrown with fields of wildflowers. This time of year, we till them into the earth for organic matter. Later, this same practice will help expose the soil which will help with freeze protection.