This fall, many Florida citrus growers are experiencing heavy fruit drop, some even up to 50 percent.
Tripti Vashisth, assistant professor of horticulture at the University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences (UF/IFAS) Citrus Research and Education Center, recently spoke on this topic. She discussed fruit drop during the first presentation of the new UF/IFAS OJ Break meeting webinar series.
According to Vashisth, there is no single cause for the fruit to drop, rather a multitude of factors.
“Small-sized fruit are more likely to drop,” Vashisth says. She also mentioned that good tree canopy resulted in less fruit dropping.
Originally it was believed that insufficient carbohydrates in the fruit was a leading cause of drop. However, after a preliminary study, Vashisth discovered that increased drop is not associated with starvation of carbohydrates in fruit. Therefore, it is recommended that growers continue good irrigation and nutrition practices throughout the fruit-development stage.
Vashisth also recommends applying gibberellic acid (GA) during the …..
Read more about the Recommendations for Managing Fruit Drop on the Citrus Industrry website.