See the results of research looking at the efficacy of copper alternatives for citrus canker to use in Florida citrus groves.

Citrus canker is one of the many pests and diseases that Florida citrus growers must contend with. The bacterial infection is currently controlled using copper sprays, which are costly, time-consuming, and not great for the environment. Additionally, spraying too often with the same product can lead to the target developing a resistance. Many Florida citrus growers are interested in copper alternatives for citrus canker management. A Citrus Industry article shared the latest research into the efficacy of alternative treatments for citrus canker. See the details below.

Copper Alternatives for Citrus Canker Research

According to the article, the UF/IFAS research looked at the effects of a few different copper alternatives for citrus canker using “young seedling trees grown either in the greenhouse or in a commercial grove in Florida.” These included “a novel plant defense inducer (PDI1) and Actigard (acibenzolar-S-methyl),” “another novel plant defense inducer (PDI2),” and “a newly labeled product MC1 (copper sulfate pentahydrate; 24 ounces per tree).”

Controls used in the two trials were Magna-Bon CS 2005 (copper sulfate pentahydrate; 150 ppm) and Kocide 3000

The results were as follows, according to the article:

  • “PDI1 applied at 500 parts per million (ppm) significantly reduced the severity of canker symptoms on leaves and did not cause any phytotoxicity.”
  • “The two new products, PDI2 and MC1, were similarly effective as Kocide 3000 and reduced the number of symptomatic fruits compared to the non-treated control.”
  • “All three products [PD12, MC1, and Kocide 3000] marginally reduced the number of symptomatic leaves and number of dropped fruit due to canker.

The article maintained the trials’ conclusions were that “The two novel plant defense inducers (PDI1 and PDI2) and MC1 compound could be good copper alternatives that are non-toxic and potentially more cost-effective for citrus growers to manage canker in Florida. UF/IFAS researchers cautiously believe that at least PDI2 and MC1 will be immediately available to growers as they are already labeled for citrus in Florida — provided they continue to hold their efficacy in repeated trials in the grove.”

Griffin Fertilizer is committed to helping both growers and ranchers make sound agronomic and economic decisions in order to maximize the health of their grove and pasture. As a full-service custom dry & liquid fertilizer blender and crop protection product distributor, we will continue our mission to further advance Florida agriculture. For questions or concerns about your farm or pasture, contact us and one of our team will be in touch.