Caring for Citrus in Fall

Oct 16, 2017
Infestation of brown rot on lemon. (Jack Kelly Clark)
Infestation of brown rot on lemon. (Jack Kelly Clark)
Citrus trees need care throughout the year, including cultural practices to keep trees healthy and pest management. During the fall season, several pests can attack citrus trees in many California regions. 

Brown Rot

Monitor for this disease by checking for damaged fruit on your tree, as well as fruit in storage. Sometimes affected fruit develops a pungent odor and can ruin fruit held in storage. See the UC IPM web page on Brown Rot to learn more.

Citrus Leafminer

If you see what look like small “tunnels” on your citrus tree leaves, your tree might have citrus leafminer. The adult stage of this pest is a small, light colored moth; the larval stage feeds and develops inside the leaves of young citrus and other closely related plants.

Citrus leafminer rarely causes problems for mature trees, however, it can seriously damage very young trees. Read the UC IPM Pest Notes: Citrus Leafminer for recommendations for prevention or management.

Snails and Slugs

Snails and slugs are attracted to citrus trees and can feed on foliage and fruit. A good sign that these pests are the perpetrators of tree damage are the silvery trails of slime along the ground or on tree leaves, or even see the snails or slugs themselves. For management tips, read the UC IPM Pest Notes: Snails and Slugs.

Asian Citrus Psyllid and Huanglongbing

You may have heard of the Asian citrus psyllid and the deadly disease huanglongbing (also called citrus greening) that has been featured in the news. This disease doesn't pose a threat to humans or animals, but is deadly to citrus trees. Once a tree develops huanglongbing, there is no cure, so for this disease prevention is key.

Stopping this serious citrus pest will require everyone's help. To learn more about the psyllid and the disease, as well as what you can do, visit the UC IPM Pest Notes: Asian Citrus Psyllid and Huanglongbing Disease.

UC IPM Web Site

For information on managing other citrus pests in the garden, see the UC IPM webpage on Pests in Gardens and Landscapes: Citrus.