From Fresno County

From Fresno County

July 11, 2013

Curly Top Ravaging Tomatoes and Melons on West Side

“In my memory, I have not seen it this bad,” noted Tom Turini, UC Cooperative Extension Farm Advisor, Fresno County. “It’s bad enough this year, that it will definitely be reflected in the yield.”

Curly Top Virus Symptoms on a cannery tomato plant in Fresno County
Some tomato and melon fields within near the Coastal Range foothills have been shredded and growers’ seeing that it was a lost cause, and disked the field up.

The damage is caused by curtly top virus vectored by the sugar beet leafhopper, (BLH) which overwinters in the Coastal Range foothills and come down when the hill side dry up in the spring. 
“The leafhoppers came down early because of the dry spring. Turini notes that Fresno and Kings counties are bearing the brunt of this, and that two or three percent of the acreage is gone because of infection. “Furthermore, the industry has lost maybe 10 to 15 percent of the tonnage in fields that have not been disked under,” Turini said. “It is a very bad season.” 

Extensive story coming in Vegetables West Magazine.

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