See the latest research on determining nutritional needs of citrus trees with citrus greening, also known as HLB.
Researchers have long known that citrus greening, also called HLB, changes the nutritional needs of citrus trees, but the exact details are not as clear. Research conducted by the University of Florida’s Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences (UF/IFAS) has shed some light on measuring the nutritional needs of citrus trees with citrus greening, according to a Citrus Industry article. Read the details below.
Measuring Nutritional Needs of Citrus Trees
While citrus greening affects factors like yield and fruit size, according to the article, they are not good factors for measuring the nutritional needs of citrus trees. So, researchers decided to “to go with something that’s fruit independent for the study,” said Arnold Schumann, a UF/IFAS scientist with the Citrus Research and Education Center at Lake Alfred.
The team decided to look at leaf size as a measuring tool. “Anybody that’s seen a greening-affected tree will realize (that HLB impacts leaf size),” he said in the article. “You see the leaf size is not what it used to be. And it’s a most valuable variable … And if you apply remedial treatments like enhanced nutrition, you can see a change, too. The leaves do start to grow better and look bigger and more like they used to (before HLB).”
According to the article, citrus greening changes the nutritional needs of the trees in multiple ways, even changing how the citrus tree takes up nutrients and uses nutrients. Schumann is in the process of developing in-depth nutritional recommendations.
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