POSTED: Tuesday, August 6, 2013 - 3:46pm
UPDATED: Wednesday, September 18, 2013 - 10:13am
BROWNSVILLE, TEXAS (KVEO NEWSCENTER 23) — It's hard to imagine the Rio Grande Valley without citrus - historically, economically or aesthetically. But ever since an Asian insect called a Citrus Psyllid infected several crops in Alamo, Valley Farmers have been keeping a watchful eye for the disease.
"It was a relatively small area that-when they found the disease, and they have not found it anywhere else here in the Valley," said Resaca Grove Farm co-owner Mike Pierce.
"Alamo's the only city in the Valley to have reported this disease. However, local farmers are still taking extra precautions by making sure their citrus crops are sprayed with chemicals and pesticides to make sure they're free of insect damage."
"The chemical is called chirpa and we-and they use that for controlling the psyllid population. If we keep the psyllid population down, then hopefully we'll keep the risk of spreading this disease, uh, to the other parts of the Valley down," said Pierce.
Using these chemicals can be critical to the wellbeing of the citrus crop because there is no known solution for citrus greening.
"They haven't come up with a solution, uh, to eliminate it or to even control it. I mean once you get it, eventually it's fatal as far as the tree is concerned, said Pierce.
Reporting in Brownsville, Marty Watson, KVEO News Center 23.