Source: AgriLife Today
The success of the Texas citrus industry may hinge on a lot of variables, but a tiny fly and people with backyard citrus trees are high on the list.
Allowing fruit to linger on a tree provides a paradise for Mexican fruit flies by keeping their reproductive cycle in business, but that can slap a quarantine on citrus in the area and limit markets, according to Dr. Olufemi Alabi, Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service plant pathologist in Weslaco.
Some 27,000 acres of citrus in a three-county area of the Lower Rio Grande Valley annually yield more than 9 million cartons of fresh grapefruit and oranges plus 5 million cartons of juice fruit valued at more than $100 million, according to Texas Citrus Mutual. Alabi said an additional 1 million trees are estimated to be growing in yards of individual residences. Those trees, he said, are not managed for the fruit fly.
Additional information on how to help control the Mexican fruit fly is available at http://www.citrusalert.com/ or by calling South Texas Citrus Alert at 956-580-1917.
Through the application of science-based knowledge, AgriLife Extension creates high-quality, relevant continuing education that encourages lasting and effective change.
Learn more about Opportunities to Support Extension.