Researchers Develop Electronic Citrus Greening Detector

Researchers Develop Electronic Citrus Greening Detector

University of Florida researchers have developed a tool to help growers combat citrus greening: an electronic sensor that can quickly detect whether a tree has been infected.

Photo courtesy of UF/IFAS

Photo courtesy of UF/IFAS

That early warning could give growers enough lead time to destroy plagued trees and save the rest.


“The current ground inspection is very time-consuming, subjective, and labor intensive, and also requires a lab analysis of leaf samples,” said Daniel Lee, UF professor and developer of the sensor. “Our real-time, in-field detection system can provide objective, fast, and accurate results of the disease detection.”

In 95% to 98% percent of laboratory and field tests, the sensor accurately detected the signs of citrus greening: leaves with veins and splotches that appear a pale shade of gray on the sensor’s images, an obvious contrast to the dark-gray image of healthy leaves.

UF/IFAS researchers used 10 high-powered LEDs and an inexpensive camera to assemble the sensor for a cost of less than $1,000, making it affordable for even small citrus growers, although commercial availability depends on finding a sponsor, Lee said.

Click here to find out how you can access the full UF/IFAS study on the vision sensor.

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frank gabry says:

I’M still perplexed with technology we have today, there has been no solution to Citrus greening, maybe mono-culture is not a good idea, I feel planting AVOCADO or something else, in between large tracks of Citrus , every 10 citrus grow 10 AVOCADO OR EVEN 5 AVOCADO sections to 10! all I know haven;t we learned that full scale operations work only for short time till some thing gets infected & destroys whole crops. Its the practice of wholesale track growing is the order which created this atmosphere, we need to relearn new proper horticultural practices, why it hasn’t been expounded upon is beyond belief, I understand money but to replant the same plant in area where some same plant perished is utter foolishness, is this what the industry has been reduced too? Are we so stupid? Have we not learned? Come on this is really getting crazy! i just cant read another article on planting the same crop in the same area as it just died in. Its easier just to take a block of wood & bang it on your head till one drops senseless onto the ground, or am I wrong?