Pesticides to Be Applied to Bakersfield Citrus Plants

State and Kern County agriculture officers will begin applying pesticides to residential citrus trees in central Bakersfield on Thursday, after an Asian Citrus Psyllid was found in the Westchester area less than two weeks ago.

Kern County agriculture director Ruben Arroyo says one chemical would be sprayed on the plant, and another injected into the soil.

“(It’s) so that the roots can take it up,” he said. “When the insect bites into the plant, it takes up some of that insecticide.”

The insect can carry Huanglongbing, which is a greening disease fatal to citrus plants.

Arroyo says the disease could erase California’s $2.4 billion citrus industry if it’s allowed to spread.

– Anthony Pollreisz