See what one Florida citrus company is doing to make bactericides more effective in fighting citrus greening, also known as HLB.
Bactericides were touted as a potential silver bullet against citrus greening, also known as HLB, when bactericides were first introduced to Florida citrus growers. However, they have not been the cure-all that growers have been hoping for. Yet citrus growers are trying everything they can to make bactericides more effective. Harold Browning with Premier Citrus ApZ shared what Premier is doing to make bactericides more effective against citrus greening at the Florida Citrus Industry Annual Conference in June. The details were shared in a Citrus Industry article. See them below.
Premier’s Efforts to Make Bactericides More Effective
According to Browning in the article, Premier is “trying to move to commercialization as quickly as possible a technology to improve the absorption of materials that would kill HLB bacteria in infected trees.” It is a laser-ablation technology that, according to the article, “makes small indentations on citrus leaves.” The thought is the small indentations will allow the bactericides to enter the citrus trees quickly and effortlessly in order to fight the citrus greening bacteria.
“The ultimate vision for this would be an autonomous machine that would both etch and deliver the material, and do it in a way that’s economically viable and efficient in terms of time. So we’re working on a series of prototypes to fine-tune the conveyance … that would lead to that kind of an applicator machine,” Browning shared.
“Our goal right now is to build several machines this year and put them in service to treat literally hundreds of acres and perhaps even multiple times on Premier property to see the improvement in prototypes, but also start looking at the impact on tree health. And once we’re comfortable with that, we want to get it out to the rest of the industry as soon as possible. So our goal is for 2019 to start making that service available,” he explained.
If successful, the technology could certainly help turn the tide against citrus greening.
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