What is believed to be the most northern HLB find in Florida was made the first week of November in a backyard Satsuma tree in Tallahassee. A homeowner sent photos of the tree’s symptoms to Leon County Extension horticulture agent Mark Tancig, who collected samples that were confirmed as HLB.
“I’ve told the homeowner he should remove it (the tree), and he’s going to get on it after he gets back from the Thanksgiving holiday,” Tancig reported.
University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences (UF/FAS) entomologist Xavier Martini believes this is the state’s farthest north HLB find. He said no other HLB finds had been made in the Tallahassee area. Martini plans to scout the area soon.
Martini, who works at the North Florida Research and Education Center (NFREC) in Quincy, said the nearest commercial citrus groves to the find are in Quincy and Monticello. Those cities are approximately 23 miles and 32 miles, respectively, from the Tallahassee find.
HLB has previously been found in North Florida in Franklin, Suwannee and Taylor counties, Martini reported.
Martini said UF/IFAS has developed a five-point HLB strategy for growers in North Florida that goes by the acronym SAFER:
- Scout your grove (sticky traps and flush inspection) for Asian citrus psyllids (ACP) on a regular basis, especially from June to November.
- Act: If you find ACP in your grove, do not wait. Treat immediately with a foliar application. Scout your grove one and two weeks weeks later to see if the application has been efficient. Contact your local IFAS Extension agent.
- Find trees with HLB: Visual inspection. Send any suspicious samples to the plant clinic at the …..