Role of healthy nursery plants in orange yield during eight years of Citrus Variegated Chlorosis epidemics
The production and commercialization of citrus seedlings inspected and produced in protected screen-houses has become mandatory in Sao Paulo State, Brazil since January 2003. This law was intended to avoid the dispersion of Citrus Variegated Chlorosis (CVC), disease caused by Xylella fastidiosa. Our objective was to compare the yield over 8 years of 'Natal' sweet orange trees grafted onto Rangpur lime obtained from healthy nursery plants and from plants artificially inoculated with X. fastidiosa. Yield was evaluated in an orchard planted in February 1999 with two treatments: (i) trees from healthy nursery plant, and (ii) trees from plants artificially inoculated with X. fastidiosa. The mean yield was 21% higher in trees from healthy nursery plants, as compared to trees from inoculated nursery plants. This difference represents a gain of approximately 203 boxes of 40.8 kg each, considering a planting density of 550 plants per hectare. (C) 2011 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.