Citrus Canker question!

Palm Bay, FL(Zone 9b)

I moved to this house 1 1/2 years ago. I fell in love with the two old native sour orange trees in my back yard. I love the smell of orange blossoms. After the storms Jeanne and Frances came thru last year one of the trees immediately started to die and the other is sickly and did not produce fruit this year. I've heard that the canker was spread in those hurricanes and I'm wondering do I have it? I want to call in the AG dept and have my trees checked but I'm so worried about making this step. Neighbors up and down the street have beautiful mature citrus trees of all kinds. Because they are within the quarantine boundry from me their beautiful fruitful trees will be destroyed by the state too. If I have canker I want to know so I can get rid of it and be safe to start all over again in two years.
What would you do?

This message was edited Aug 17, 2005 12:00 PM

Gainesville, FL

If you really do think it may be canker then call them so they can check. Chances are if your tree has it then others in the area may already have it as well.

This is one of those things that makes me glad I'm well north of the commercial citrus belt.


Palm Bay, FL(Zone 9b)

So many people have sentiment in their beautiful citrus trees. Received as a Fathers Day gift or a Birthday gift kind of sentiment. They watched it grow from just a tiny thing. The trees have blessed them with tons of fruit during the years. Too watch a healthy looking tree that a loved one gave me be cut down and hauled away just because a neighbor has canker down the street would break my heart. I've seen how much it hurts them on the local news. I just hate having to be a part of that kind of sadness.
Maybe my trees are just old and ready to kick the bucket. I'm praying real hard that it will be just as simple as that. I'll know for sure in the near future.

Thank you Alan.

Fort Pierce, FL(Zone 10a)

Alan, I may be wrong, and frequently am, but the citrus canker doesn't hurt the trees, just blemishes the fruit. The reason for the panic and tearing down trees is to keep it from spreading north into the citrus growing counties. Because the fruit cannot be sold, if it got into the big groves it would wipe out the complete industry. My county, St. Lucie, is next to Indian River county which is the site of the most famous Florida groves. My neighbor across the street has one lovely orange tree, and every month, just like clockwork, the inspector comes by to check it. O.K. so far. I wouldn't tell anyone, GOOGLE citris canker to learn more, and you might also post on the DG Forum about trees, or fruit bearing trees for advice on your tree problem.

I lost my trees in Miami and it broke my heart. I just had to tell myself it was for the greater good.

Palm Bay, FL(Zone 9b)

Thanks Patti. Another symptom of canker is the tree does not bear fruit. I have alot of money invested in baby citrus trees of all kinds. From what I've learned so far this canker affects all citrus. I don't want blemished ugly fruit on any of my citrus trees ever. The fruit is part of the beauty of the tree. If my older trees are infected then my investment goes down the drain too. It all has to go. Your property is quarantined and you are not allowed to grow citrus for two years after the trees are removed.
Even though I understand the reasons why these trees are destroyed I can guarantee that I would go ape if they went to my moms house and killed the huge tangerine tree I gave to my dad years ago I would have a temper tantrum that would probably be on the national news. My daddy's gone now and he loved that tree.
I'm still trying to learn more about this canker before I make my decision.

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