Residents in the area have been notified, said Steve Lyle, spokesman for the California Department of Food and Agriculture. He said officials have used the same preventive approach in San Diego County since 2008, when the pest was first discovered locally.
Union Tribune reporter Chris Nichols added information in the article from UC's Asian citrus psyllid and huanglongbing disease website.
"The Asian citrus psyllid is a brown insect about the size of an aphid. It attacks new citrus leaf growth and causes the new leaf tips to twist or burn back. Most concerning, it can spread bacteria that cause a citrus-greening disease known as Huanglongbing or HLB, according to a description on the University of California’s Agriculture and Natural Resources website," the reporter wrote.
This week a quarantine goes into effect in some parts of Tulare County to stop the spread of Asian citrus psyllid, according to a 3-minute story on The California Report. The decision comes after officials found ACP in traps near Strathmore and Terra Bella. For an update on the pest and the disease it can carry, The California Report's Rachael Myrow spoke with Mark Hoddle, UC Cooperative Extension specialist in the Department of Entomology at UC Riverside.
Myrow asked why the effort to prevent movement of ACP has not been successful.
"It's very difficult to police the movement of all types of citrus plants in and out of infested areas," Hoddle said. "People may accidentally and unwittingly move plants that have Asian citrus psyllid on them out of infested areas in Southern California to uninfested areas. Another way these psyllids may move is they potentially have the ability to hitchhike on farm machinery or even vehicles."
Listen to the full interview here:
Mark Hoddle, UC Cooperative Extension specialist in the Department of Entomology at UC Riverside, collected Tamarixia radiata in the Punjab region of Paskistan. After a period of quarantine, the beneficial insect was released in Southern California citrus trees beginning in December 2011.
The Press-Enterprise article said Hoddle has found three sites — two in Fontana, one in San Bernardino — where the wasp has attacked psyllid larvae, killing them.
“We’re trying to understand how big an impact this wasp is having on the Asian citrus psyllid,” Hoddle said. “It’s too early to make estimates, but (the finds are) encouraging.”
For more details on the establishment of Tamarixia, see the UC Riverside Center for Invasive Species Research blog.
Olive oil's heath benefits? It's a slippery question
Katherine Tallmadge, The Washington Post
Polyphenols are what make olive oil more healthful than other vegetable oils, like canola oil. However, when tested, polyphenols were surprisingly low in most commercially available olive oils, USDA-ARS researchers reported. They also don't live up to international or USDA quality standards, according to studies by the UC Davis Olive Center.
Studies show that, as days, weeks and months go by after harvest, the polyphenol content and health benefits of the oil diminish.
“Think of olive oil as olive juice with a maximum two-year shelf life,” says Selina Wang, research director at the Olive Center.
Covenant between almond growers and researchers
Bob Curtis and Gabriele Ludwig, The Almond Board, Western Farm Press
If managed well, commercial trials can provide benefits for growers, researchers and the industry at large, but they can pose challenges. Almond research plots are a covenant between the grower and researcher that requires both parties to communicate and understand the goal of the research.
Bruce Lampinen, UC Cooperative Extension specialist in the Department of Plant Sciences at UC Davis, says involving grower cooperators offers the research community the benefit of gathering commercial data to test promising practices or understand impacts in a real-world setting. Without this research, many of today's common practices that have led to dramatic increases in yield and improved quality, along with efficient and environmentally responsible orchard management, would not have been discovered.
The story centered around Kingsburg Orchards, one of the largest local tree fruit producers. The organization's board met recently to sample 30 experimental stone fruit varieties.
Kevin Day, UC Cooperative Extension advisor in Tulare County, said the push to find an edge in the marketplace is no surprise in today's highly competitive retail market.
"People are doing anything they can for product differentiation, including having exclusive varieties," Day said. "And the focus is really shifting to flavor."
Climate change is another reason to protect farmland
Rich Rominger and Renata Brillinger - Sacramento Bee
This op-ed piece references a new report released by the California Natural Resources Agency and the California Energy Commission that focused on a study by Louise Jackson and her team of UC Davis researchers. "Thanks to the team of UC Davis researchers and government funding for their study, we can add climate protection to the compelling list of reasons to invest in the long-term protection of California's farms and ranches," wrote the authors.
Progress reported in efforts to control growing threat to local and state citrus crops
Lance Orozco - KCLU, California Lutheran University Radio
Orozco interviews Ted Batkin of the Citrus Research Board and John Krist of the Ventura County Farm Bureau. In the six-minute story, Krist mentions work by Mark Hoddle, UC Cooperative Extenison specialist in the Department of Entomology at UC Riverside, to introduce natural enemies of Asian citrus psyllid to help bring down populations of the exotic pest.
Neil O’Connell, UC Cooperative Extension advisor in Tulare County, a citrus expert, recommends that field staff also be well versed on these issues since they are in the field daily during the citrus harvest.
Huanglongbing, a disease spread by Asian citrus psyllid, is the worst citrus disease in the world. The disease was detected on one tree in Southern California in March, the first such find in the state. Officials are asking for farmers and home gardeners to be on the look-out for other HLB-infected trees.
O'Connell says deficiencies of zinc, iron and manganese can resemble leaf symptoms found in trees with HLB.
"Some deficiencies have fairly similar symptoms," O'Connell said. "If you are very familiar with deficiency patterns in these elements then it is much easier to separate this out. You can recognize whether the problem is zinc, iron, manganese, or another deficiency while possibly ruling out HLB."
A distinguishing characteristic of HLB infection is a yellow area that crosses from one interveinal area to another, O'Connell explained.