“We’re surrounded,” he said.
Though the microscopic insect that transmits the disease, the Asian citrus psyllid, has been found across Arizona, he said the disease hasn’t been detected within the state yet, making it a rare haven for citrus trees.
The state wants to keep it that way.
While the state agency works on killing psyllids, the University of Arizona is collaborating with researchers across the nation to develop a pesticide that targets certain psyllid genes so that either the psyllids die, the psyllids can’t reproduce or the psyllids can’t transmit the disease.
The hope is that such a genetic pesticide can stop further spread of citrus greening …. For now, farmers wait, keeping an ever-watchful eye for signs of a disease that lurks on Arizona’s doorstep.