John Cadiz Klemack
An invasive and deadly disease that attacks citrus trees was found in Hacienda Heights March 30, and now no fruits are allowed in or out of a 93-square-mile quarantine area for the next two years. This week, state agriculture workers are going door to door to spray trees in the Los Angeles suburb. Trees infected by Huanglongbing, or yellow dragon disease, will have to be removed. The disease is carried by the Asian citrus psyllid, a small flying insect. NBC4’s John Cadiz Klemack reports from Hacienda Heights.
Spraying is underway in the San Gabriel Valley to stop the spread of a disease that, if left unchecked, threatens to wipe out California’s $2 billion citrus industry.
Those unsavory symptoms are signs that the tree isn’t getting the nutrients it needs, experts said.
They're hoping to nip this problem in the bud, before California's juicy citrus industry falls prey to a tiny bug that cost Florida billions.
Officials are urging the community to help track the disease using a mobile app, dubbed SAVE OUR CITRUS, the data from which is collected by the U.S. Department of Agriculture.
The free application, available at iTunes, allows the user to send a photo of misshapen or discolored fruit to citrus experts, who will respond with a diagnosis.