The telltale ring scarring on navel oranges and other citrus is the work of citrus thrips, Scirtothrips citri, a pest that can have a major economic impact on fresh-market crops. Controlling citrus thrips is essential to protecting fruit quality and the accompanying price premium.
With citrus thrips the second-instar larvae do the most damage, feeding mainly under young fruit sepals, explains says Scott Chase, retail account manager, DuPont Crop Protection. “As the fruit grows, the damage moves outward, creating the familiar ring-shaped scarring. Fruit is most susceptible to thrip damage after petal fall and until it’s about 1½ inches in diameter.”
That’s why a control treatment made at petal fall is most effective, he continues. “Now citrus growers have a new option. DuPont™ Exirel® insect control powered by Cyazypyr® provides a unique mode of action against citrus thrips, as well as a cross spectrum of sucking and chewing pests, including aphids, Asian citrus psyllid and citrus leafminer,” he says. “Exirel® protects foliage and fruit from insect feeding so trees can produce a healthier, better looking crop.”
Used at a rate of 16 to 20.5 fluid ounces per acre plus adjuvant, Exirel® stops insect feeding fast. “It moves into leaves and redistributes as leaves expand, for long-lasting control,” he explains. “It also provides selective control of pests that feed on the plant tissue without disrupting most beneficial populations.”
More marketable fruit
Tree foliage and young fruit are often heavily damaged by citrus thrips, and it’s the damage to fruit that cuts into crop profits. “Effective control of citrus thrips is important in achieving blemish-free fruit, and the fresh market is all about producing great-looking fruit with consumer appeal,” says Chase.
Field trials in Visalia, Calif., groves showed navel orange trees that received two applications of Exirel® (at petal fall and summer flush) produced about 20 percent more unscarred fruit than other treatments. Similar results were seen in Mandarin trials.*
While healthy trees can withstand the foliar damage from citrus thrips, that damage impacts the tree’s productivity, notes Chase. “Because Exirel® protects the developing foliage as well as the fruit, the result is healthier, stronger trees that produce consistently better yield and quality.”
* Data on file. (WEM-08-022).
The EPA registered label contains the statement that DuPont™ Exirel® is highly toxic to bees exposed to direct treatment on blooming crops or weeds. Do not apply this product or allow it to drift to blooming crops or weeds if bees are foraging in the treatment area.
Always read and follow all label directions and precautions for use.
Unless indicated, trademarks with ®, ™ or SM are trademarks of DuPont or affiliates. Delegate ®, (Dow AgroSciences). © 2016 DuPont