Fighting ACP on Farms and Residential Areas Critical
By Hannah Young, Associate Editor
Pests and diseases are as prominent as ever not only for California farmers but in residential areas as well. California Ag Today recently spoke with Rick Westcott, a senior sales rep for Bayer Crop Science, about preventative materials for pests and diseases and the importance of controlling the spread of those diseases, particularly Asian citrus psyllid.
Westcott explained that the advantage of Movento, a powerful insecticide, is that it is systemic, it’s applied early, and it will translocate throughout the entire tree.
“It’s both phloem and xylem movement, so it’ll go down into the roots and then back up so it constantly recirculates within the plant,” Westcott said. “That’s what gives it the longevity of control.”
In citrus trees, Movento typically takes about 65 to 70 days to start working after circulating through the plant which helps with the longevity of the product, Westcott added.
Although Movento is not used specifically for Asian citrus psyllid, it has proved to aid in controlling the pest.
Westcott said Movento is currently being used against citrus red scale and applied during pedal fall along with thrip sprays, which farmers are applying anyway.
“It will take care of your red scale, your early red scale spray, and of course, because it also controls Asian citrus psyllid, it’s a bonus to do that too,” Westcott said. “Then the other thing that they’re doing with the thrip spray as well for katydid control, which is also an issue in citrus at that thrip timing.”
By patrolling and monitoring for ACP, the spread of HLB can also be controlled.
“The key is to keep the ACP at the lowest level possible or zero if that’s possible. [The] fortunate thing for us in the San Joaquin Valley is the fact that we do a lot of spraying for other pests throughout the year that almost everything that we put in the tank happens to also control ACP at the same time,” Westcott explained.
Westcott said that this is the reason we have not seen a huge outbreak of ACP in the San Joaquin Valley, unlike other parts of California.
“The problem isn’t in any commercial grove at this point, but it’s all residential,” Westcott continued. “It’s all concentrated in the residential areas, so there are certain products that you can use an ag that you can’t use there, but most of them, fortunately, you know, they have a label for both residential and agriculture, so they do crossover to stop them there so they don’t get here.”
HLB is still posing a threat in California, but most specifically in the Los Angeles area.
“The total amount of trees currently that are infective with HLB in the counties of LA, Orange and Riverside County is 645. And then if you compare that from a year ago: a year ago, there were only 73 trees that they had infected, and it’s changing every day,” Westcott said.