Deadly Citrus Disease Reaches Mexico, Threatens California

Photo by Dvortygirl
Photo by Dvortygirl
Los Angeles Times, 8/18/2009

Leaders of California’s $1.6-billion citrus industry said Monday that a disease that was killing orchards worldwide was now rooted in Mexico, and experts warned that it was headed toward the state.

Citrus greening disease has infected six citrus trees on Mexico’s Yucatan Peninsula, spread by an infestation of the Asian citrus psyllid.

There’s a virtual insect highway across the width of Mexico, and once the aphid-like insect hops on, California is in trouble, said Beth Grafton-Cardwell, a UC Riverside entomologist and director of the Lindcove Research and Extension Center, east of Visalia.

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