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Timely tendings: Spray citrus trees to eliminate pests, other problems

January is often referred to as an optional month for spraying citrus trees. Several citrus pests and nutritional deficiencies may need correcting before they cause extensive damage. Spray neutral copper for citrus scab and a light horticultural oil for scales, whitefly and mites. Micronutrients can be sprayed at the same time or added to the soil under the drip line of the tree. Micronutrients will be absorbed through the leaves and can correct the problem much faster than fertilizer added to the soil. Read and follow label directions for the correct amount to use. You can read the University of Florida/IFAS Extension publication "Your Florida Dooryard Citrus Guide: Common Pests, Diseases, and Disorders of Dooryard Citrus" online at

. Seeds from papaya can be started indoors this month. Clean the pulp off each seed and plant about ¼ inch deep in a container of potting soil. Fresh seeds usually germinate in 10 to 15 days. Under ideal growing conditions, fruit should be produced in eight to 10 months. Seedlings planted in early March should produce edible fruit by November.

Information from Carol Suggs and Theresa Badurek of the Pinellas County Extension Service and from the Hillsborough County Extension Gardening Almanac. Go to the extension websites at and

Timely tendings: Spray citrus trees to eliminate pests, other problems 01/14/11 [Last modified: Friday, January 14, 2011 3:30am]
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