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Citrus disease attacking Florida orange groves


Photo: Video by fox4now.com

Citrus disease attacking Florida orange groves

By Katie Jones. CREATED May 10, 2013 - UPDATED: May 10, 2013

COLLIER COUNTY, Fla.- Florida citrus groves are fighting a losing battle against a disease with no cure. All the citrus groves in the state of Florida including Bob Johnson's in Collier County are in major danger of being attacked by the deadly disease known as citrus greening.

"I'm doing some re-planting on some of the early's but this ground isn't the best down here." Johnson said.

It was first spotted in the Sunshine State in 2005, but reports show this year's losses are by far the worst.

Growers said this bacteria attacks the tree which causes the un-ripe fruit to turn bitter and fall off and the worst part about this disease is after millions of dollars have been spend on research, there is still no cure.

"It is kind of like cancer. It could take a long time to actually find a cure for it." Johnson said.


The disease is known to hide in citrus trees for 2-5 years and is easily spread by insects. Johnson said he's extra careful and goes organic because he said pesticides can do more harm than good.

"I think they over spray stuff. We don't need that we need to let the good bugs eat the bad bugs that's part of the problem. The healthier you keep the tree the more it withstands anything just like a human." Johnson said.


Growers said the citrus greening situation was worsened this season because of our unusually dry winter.






Katie Jones

Katie Jones

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Katie Jones is a reporter for FOX 4 news.