Seeking Citrus’ Holy Grail

Last month, Southern Gardens Citrus began its second set of research field trials — planting citrus trees which have shown resistance to greening in the lab. These trees were developed in conjunction with Integrated Plant Genetics, a private research company based in Alachua.

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“This field trial continues our efforts to develop a solution to the current challenging citrus diseases of greening and canker,” says Rick Kress, Southern Gardens president.

USDA Compliance

Kress says that the greening research project was initiated in 2007 and that the trees have been planted in compliance with the issued field testing permit as received from USDA’s Biotechnology Regulatory Services Department.
Consistent with the previous greening resistant planted field trials that are in place within the Southern Gardens Citrus Hendry County groves, “We will continue to follow all issued regulations related to the safety and integrity of the trial, including strict access control,” says Kress.

Fighting Together

Kress says that Southern Gardens Citrus continues to be very proactive in working with all facets of the citrus industry including UF/IFAS, USDA, FDACS, Texas A&M AgriLife Research, Cornell University, and independent researchers in an effort to combat and eliminate the HLB/greening disease.