Citrus

Citrus Industry

Save + Maintain Trees with MitoGrow™

 

Aqua 3-IA is the ultimate addition to your citrus care routine and is user friendly and cost effective. Use of Aqua 3-IA encourages and improves overall nutrient and water uptake, thereby enhancing vigor and growth as well as tolerance to environmental stress. MitoGrow is currently looking for strategic partnerships to get this product to citrus growers and help address the HLB problem.

 

A New Approach to Treating HLB

 

In 2019, MitoGrow began working with industry leaders in both the agriculture and research sectors to find a better solution for treating HLB infected trees. Trials conducted with MitoGrow’s water soluble products by Texas A&M AgriLife Research have yielded exciting and significant results. These lab studies have shown MitoGrow’s citrus product can significantly reduce the number of bacteria that cause HLB in citrus root tissue. Unlike MitoGrow’s arbor care product that has a vitamin-hormone exemption, this new product requires EPA approval and is currently going through the EPA registration process.

 

Aqua 3-IA was developed to work with the plant’s natural growth processes, and is therefore compatible with all cultivation methods designed to enhance plant growth and development. MitoGrow has not found any common care treatment or practice that is not complementary with the application of Aqua 3-IA.

 

MitoGrow’s approach to treating trees with this new product is at the roots, via drenching or through irrigation systems. This patent pending product makes use of biostimulants to aid in stimulating new growth and fighting HLB. This coupled with ease of application has industry experts excited. Further, these university studies suggest Aqua 3-IA could work just as well, if not better than, antibiotics in decreasing bacteria in infected trees and without the controversy.

 

All plants are in ceaseless competition with their environment for survival. There are constant stressors from insects, as well as viral, bacterial and fungal diseases. For most of evolutionary history successful plants were those that were able to outgrow these assaults. Commercial citrus varieties have been bred with production volume and fruit quality as the primary focus rather than survival. The grower is now responsible for the tree’s survival, but despite their best practices some diseases are impossible to prevent, such as HLB. Yet trees are still able to resist (outgrow) disease if they are provided ideal growing conditions.

 

What is HLB?

 

Huanglongbing (HLB), commonly known as citrus greening disease, is a disease spread by the Asian citrus psyllid. This sap sucking bug feeds on the stems and leaves of citrus and can carry the bacteria that causes the disease.

 

Why is HLB devastating to the industry?

 

As the name might suggest, it causes green citrus. Most would equate green citrus with not being ripe and unripe fruits often taste bitter and lack sweetness. This is essentially what HLB is doing to citrus, causing it to be green, bitter and even causing the fruit to be deformed, making it undesirable to consumers and eventually killing the tree. As of 2016, HLB has caused more than US$4 billion and 30,000 jobs to be lost in Florida’s economy. Click here to see the global impact of HLB.

 

Current Treatments for HLB

 

  • Treat trees with antibiotics
  • Kill the Asian citrus psyllid via parasites and pesticides
  • Setup quarantines
  • Remove and destroy infected trees
  • Increase nutrition until trees (and fruit) are no longer viable

 

None of these treatment methods are an effective way of stopping the spread of the disease and protecting other trees. While some of these methods are generally okay for the environment, others could have serious consequences and the use of antibiotics is a highly controversial method to treat HLB.

 

The Florida Department of Citrus recommends: “To slow the progression of citrus greening in infected trees, trace amounts of nutrients are applied to the leaves or to the roots. Providing better nutrition helps trees fight against citrus greening and enables them to continue to produce quality fruit for an extended period of time. Nutritional treatments are continuing to be extensively researched in mitigating the effects of citrus greening.”

 

Best citrus cultivation practices include highly managed irrigation and nutrient application systems, strict pesticide application schedules, netting and other physical barriers. The formulation of Aqua 3-IA is designed to enhance the effectiveness of applied water and nutrients while working effectively with the other recommended practices.

 

The increased root growth rate in trees treated with Aqua 3-IA allows them to absorb a greater percentage of the applied water and nutrients before they pass out of the root zone. This results in better plant health with the same or even reduced amounts of nutrients and water. Aqua 3-IA also increases citrus top growth and innate resistance to diseases.

 

For More Information

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